by Ken Signorello
July 20, 2020
At the July 6th Selectboard meeting, a motion was passed to schedule a public meeting to collect public input on Policing.
Instead, at the July 21st meeting, Unified Manager Evan Teich presented a $25,000 contract he arranged with Creative Discourse, an organization run by his East Street neighbor, Sue McCormack.
Contract details may be seen here. Although not mentioned in the contract, Sue expects to include Tabitha Moore, NAACP Vermont Director. The first step is a survey which may be completed here.
Regarding Merger, In light of the Trustees’ conversation last week and the impending August 24th deadline, there was consensus that a November vote is unlikely for a number of reasons.
The actual “go / no go” decision may be made at the next Joint Selectboard and Village Trustees meeting on July 28th.
Selectboard Meeting Run Down, July 20th
Andy Watts reintroduced the idea of having a vote on popular Charter Changes such as putting the budget approval on Australian ballot.
Pat Murray argued that taking popular clauses out of the merger charter might make merger harder to pass.
History repeats! Back in March of 2014 a group of residents, including Bruce Post and Bob Bates, began advocating for moving budget approval from an in-person Town Meeting to Australian Ballot.
The Budget-to-Ballot group came to be convinced by then Village Trustee Elaine Haney, among others, to wait patiently for additional Charter Changes to be included on a future ballot. That never happened.
Should the joint boards put off the merger vote for now, there was strong consensus that a future voting date should be committed to, and worked toward.
Tax Rates Set
The Town budget increases approved in March were thrown out in light of the COVID pandemic and instead a near level funding rate was approved. An increase of just .06% or just $.84 on the average-value ($280,000) home.
Appointed to the Conservation and Trails Committee were Casey Clark, Diana Wood.