BELMONT — Selectmen were updated Monday about the progress on plans for a Sunday Farmer's Market at the Tioga Pavilion by Gretta Olson-Wilder, the town's special events coordinator.
She told selectmen that she has been developing guidelines for the market based on those in place in other communities around the state and that one of the key issues she is attempting to resolve is whether or not the individual vendors will be required to have their own liability insurance.
The Tioga Pavilion is located next to the Belmont Mill and has a 26 foot by 80 foot covered common area. It was built last year using grant funds from the federal Land & Water Conservation Fund, which also funded a river walk along the Tioga River.
Plans call for a Farmer's Market from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on four Sundays during the growing season, June 28, July 26, August 30 and Sept. 20.
Wilder said that she has discussed the proposed guidelines with a craftsperson who is interested in operating a booth at the market as well as a farmer and that they gave her different opinions about the liability insurance requirement, with the crafter saying that was fine by her but the farmer saying that he would not participate if liability insurance is required.
She said that some farmer's markets have their own liability insurance like Canterbury while some have very strict requirements for vendors, like Concord.
Selectman Ron Cormier said ''if you want to put strict liability rules in, don't bother going any further. You'll have a problem getting participation. If you require it, they won't come,'' said Cormier.
Town Administrator Jeanne Beaudin said that blanket liability insurance would cost the town about $500.
Selectman John Pike said that he wondered whether the Laconia Farmer's Market required vendors to have liability insurance, noting that many vendors there were selling out of the back of their pickup trucks.
''I'd like to know what the other towns close to us do. It would make their lives (the vendors) and ours a lot simpler if we knew,'' said Pike.
Beaudin said that it was not so much an issue for vendors as it was the town and noted that Castleberry Fairs, which runs crafts shows in the area, carries liability insurance for its vendors.
Cormier suggested that if it was standard practice to require liability insurance then the town could charge an extra amount above the $15 farmer's market vendor fee to help pay for it.
Wilder said that she would research what requirements nearby communities have in place on liability insurance for farmer's markets and bring that information back to the board.
Selectmen also discussed a proposed facility use policy for the Corner Meetinghouse and the Tioga Pavilion and agreed that the minimum fee should be $50 and that there should be a requirement for a $250 refundable deposit to ensure that the facilities were cleaned and that there was no damage to them.
Selectmen accepted a proposal from Castagna Consulting to host a meeting on Monday, May 4 at 7 p.m. on ''What's Next for the Belmont Mill?'' and asked Beaudin to approach the Shaker Regional School District with a request to use one of their facilities in case the turnout exceeds the capacity of the Corner Meetinghouse.
Also approved was a payment in lieu of taxes agreement with Belmont Elderly Housing for a payment of $20,039.06 in 2015.
- Category: Local News
- Hits: 314