Cavendish Update 1/18/19: Town Mtg Prep/SB/Fire District 2

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This special edition of the Cavendish Update has been made possible by donors who wish to remain anonymous. 

Thank you to the Cavendish Fire Department and all those who donated to make it possible to purchase a generator for the Cavendish’s Shelter, which is at the Cavendish Baptist Church. While we expect lots of fluffy snow from the approaching storm, it’s good to know that hot showers and food will be readily available if needed. Donations are still being collected to help with the installation of the generator and can me made to Cavendish Volunteer Fire Department Att: Emergency Shelter Initiative, PO Box 453, Cavendish VT 05142

The forecast includes a snowstorm warning-Sat 4pm to Sun 4pm-and will be followed by frigid temps. Please check on neighbors, particularly those who are home bound.

 

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1/18/19 Cavendish Update

1. Open Positions for Cavendish Elected Officials

2. Select Board Budget Meetings

3. Cavendish Related News

4. Warning Annual Meeting of Cavendish Fire District #2

5. Events

 

1. OPEN POSITIONS FOR CAVENDISH ELECTED OFFICIALS: Those interested in seeking an elected office, petitions are available at the Town Clerk’s Office, Monday-Friday, 9-4. Deadline for filing with the Town Clerk nominating petitions for town offices, to be voted on by Australian ballot, is January 28, 2019 by 5pm. Election will take place on Tuesday March 5 at the Proctorsville Fire Department. Positions open are as follows:

Town Moderator                    1 year

Select Board                            3 year and 2 openings for 1-year terms

Town Agent                            1 year

Lister                                       2 positions for 3-year terms

Auditor                                   1, 2 and 3 year terms

Library Trustee                       5 year

Trustee of Public Funds         3 year

Town Grand Juror                  1 year

GMUSD                                 3 year

 

2. SELECT BOARD BUDGET MEETINGS: As part of the budgetary process, the Cavendish Select Board (SB) is meeting Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout January, unless otherwise noted. Budget meetings are not filmed, but minutes are available at the Municipal Website. Below are some of the activities and decisions made during these meetings:

• Windsor County Sheriff’s office: In Cavendish 12 hours per week to enforce speed limits and respond to emergency calls if they are in the area. Requesting an increase in the hourly rate from $53 to $55 with mileage rate .60¢ per mile. Town manager Brendan McNamara noted that tickets have been higher due to more tickets being issued during the 103 construction.

• Eliminated Bruce McEnaney’s position of Asst. Town Manager. McEnaney will remain as sextant.

• Will include the consideration of the Black River Health Center exemption from property taxes for a period of 5 years on the Town Meeting Warning

 

3. CAVENDISH RELATED NEWS

Route 131/103: There are considerable concerns about the lack of lines on 103 as well as the condition of 131, to say nothing of the intersection of the two roads. This was a major topic of conversation at the Cavendish Select Board Meeting on Monday night. Cavendish representative Annmarie Christensen replied to an e-mail on this topic January 17 (Thursday), I have been working on it and anticipate hearing more tomorrow. I understand from the project manager that signs will be installed later this week or early next week on Rt 103 informing motorists driving north and south bound lanes of turns onto route 131. Proctorsville resident Mary McCallum talked about the difficulties route 103 is posing this winter in a commentary for VT Public Radio Faded Fog Lines .

GMUSD Finance Panel Deadlocks, Sends Budget Options to Full Board: Monday night, the Two Rivers Supervisory Union (TRSU) board rejected the request of the Green Mountain Unified School District (GMUSD) to reopen the supervisory union (SU) budget and look for some cuts that would lower the district’s assessment for SU services. [See Chester Telegraph for information on this meeting ] Tuesday night, the GM finance committee was back in session trying to get a 4.3 percent budget increase down below 3.5 percent. But, in the end, the panel deadlocked and decided to present a menu of options to the full GMUSD board, which must finalize a budget at its monthly meeting on Thursday, January 17. The spending plan proposed on Tuesday would represent a per pupil cost of $15,904.59. The SU calculated an estimated tax rate of $1.49 before an Act 46 merger credit reduction of $.06. The tax rate would be further increased or decreased by each town’s Common Level of Assessment. The higher the CLA above 100 percent, the lower the tax rate for that town and the lower the CLA the higher the tax rate. This year, the CLA for Andover is 100.87 percent, Baltimore is 97.17 percent, Cavendish is 113.67 percent and Chester is 117.73 percent*. Chester Telegraph

Help for Government Shutdown Employees: Black River Good Neighbor Services in Ludlow reminds any government employee who is having trouble meeting financial obligations that we stand ready to help with food or heating assistance. They are located at the thrift store, 37B Main Street in Ludlow.

3Square VT Users-Shutdown Impact: Due to the government shutdown the Department for Children and Families (DCF) will be issuing February 3SquaresVT benefits early, on January 20th. These benefits will be for the entire month of February, so it is important that participants budget accordingly.

DMV To Clamp Down on Car Inspections: Vermont drivers received a postcard from the DMV alerting them of car inspection changes. Cars that didn't meet emissions requirements ended January 15. The state instructs repair shops to direct customers to check their warranties to make sure they don't spend money that they don't have to. And if the emissions repairs aren't covered, to help them with a waiver if they can't afford the fixes. For repairs that cost more than $200 and are not covered by dealer warranties, car owners can still get a one-year waiver.

Increasing Number of Scams Targeting Vermonters: WCAX has a special report on scamming in Vermont. If you wish to be notified of scam alerts by text, e-mail or call, sign up the University of Vermont’s Scam Alerts

State of Vermont Workers 2018: Ten years after the start of the Great Recession and more than eight years after it officially  ended, there are signs of recovery in Vermont. The economy has continued to grow, if more  slowly than the rest of the country. Yet whatever growth or prosperity the state has achieved, many have not benefited from it. Average Vermonters still struggle to make ends meet. The economy is improving, but not for most Vermonters: For the past 13 years State of Working Vermont has told the same story. This year again, because the fruits of economic growth have not shown up in the pockets of a  lot of Vermonters, the indicators point to mixed results. More Vermonters were working, yet at  the end of 2017 their numbers were still below the all-time high of 344,135, reached in 2006.  Poverty fell a bit last year, but for young Vermonters, Vermonters of color, and single parents  the rates remained high. Fewer families were relying on the Reach Up program for assistance in  2017, but still nearly 70,000 Vermonters lived in poverty, and over 75,000 depended on 3SquaresVT  to get enough to eat. In the large majority of families with children, all parents in the household worked, but affordable, high-quality childcare was out of reach for many of them. State of Working Vermont 201

Mobile Wireless in Vermont: In October and November of 2018 The Department of Public Service (PSD) conducted a drive test of the state of mobile wireless coverage in Vermont. The initiative was undertaken primarily to demonstrate that good cause exists to expand the territory in the state  that is deemed eligible for forthcoming  federal grants. The two largest carriers, AT&T and Verizon have a similar number of blocks where they have at least some service-72% Verizon, 74% AT&T. 65% of the tested blacks have service from both AT&T and Verizon; with 54% of these  tested blocks having speeds better than 0.256 kbps. Verizon has the largest number of blocks with the highest speeds. The report, issued Jan. 15, contains an interactive map of findings. DPS

4. WARNING ANNUAL MEETING OF CAVENDISH FIRE DISTRICT #2: The legal voters of Cavendish Fire District #2 are hereby notified and warned to meet at the Meeting Room at the Cavendish Town Office on Tuesday, February 12, 2019 at 7:30 pm to act on the following articles:

Article 1:To hear and act on the Auditor’s report (position vacant)

Article 2:To elect officers as follows:

• Moderator for one year (currently Abraham Gross)

• Prudential Committee Member or one year term (Currently Scott Ranney)

• Prudential Committee Member for three-year term (Currently Stuart Lindberg)

Current members are Stuart Lindberg-term up 2019; Scott Ranney-term up 2019; Robert Evens-term up 2021; Clerk for one year-currently Michele Lindberg; Tax Collector for one year (Town Manager-Brendan McNamara); Treasurer or one year-Currently Bob Evens; and Auditor for one year (currently vacant)

Article 3: To see if the legal voters of District #2 will raise money and in what amount or the purpose of defraying expenses for this fiscal year July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020

Article 4: To conduct any other business to come before the meeting.

Minutes from 2018’s Annual meeting are available on-line. Financials are also available on-line

 

5. EVENTS: The Cavendish Town Budget process is now underway and the Select Board will be meeting on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6-8 at the Cavendish Town Office as part of this process.

JANUARY 18 (FRIDAY): Municipal utility payment due

JANUARY 21 (MONDAY): Martin Luther King Day Town Office closed

JANUARY 23 ( WEDNESDAY): Foxes in our Midst workshop. Free open to the public. Speaker is Michael Clouth from the Southern Vermont Natural History Museum; 6 pm at the Cavendish Town Office. Sponsored by CCCA. Refreshments served. FMI: Claire Walker at 226-7259.

JANUARY 27 (SUNDAY): SunCommon in conjunction with the Cavendish Community and Conservation Association (CCCA) will host a free workshop to discuss solar power generation and battery storage; 1 pm; Crows Bakery on Depot St. in Proctorsville. FMI: Robin Timko 226-7736

FEBRUARY 12 (TUESDAY):  Cavendish Fire District #2 Annual Meeting; 7:30 Pm Cavendish Town Office. Warning information is available at the Cavendish Connects Calendar.

MARCH 4 (MONDAY): Town Meeting

MARCH 5 (TUESDAY): VOTING! Proctorsville Fire Department from 10-7.

For information on upcoming events, go to the Cavendish Connects Calendar. For area events, check the Okemo Valley Chamber of Commerce calendar.  

IF YOU READ THIS PLEASE HELP SUPPORT CAVENDISH CONNECTS

Cavendish Fire District 2 Annual Meeting Minutes Tuesday February 13, 2018

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Cavendish Fire District 2 Annual Meeting Minutes: Tuesday February 13, 2018

 Those in attendance: Michele Lindberg, Lorens N. Lindberg, Diane McNamara, Carly Snyder, Jason Nareau, Rebecca Pixley Nareau, Shane Turco, Brian Fitzgibbons, John Turco, Karlene Glidden, Robert Glidden, Brendan McNamara, Ken Emery, Abe Gross-moderator, Robert Evens-Treasurer, Stu Lindberg-Prudential Committee chair.

 be Called the meeting to order 7:34 p.m.  Abe discussed state rules regarding agenda items and then read the meeting warning.  

Article 1 To hear and act on the auditor’s report.

Article 2 To elect officers as follows

• Moderator for one year.  (Currently Abraham Gross)

• Prudential Committee member for three year term (currently Robert Evens)

Current members are: Stuart Lindberg-term up in 2019, David Burgess, term up in 2020, Robert Evens-term up in 2018, Clerk for one year (currently David Burgess)   Tax collector for one year(Town Manager-Brendan McNamara)  Treasurer for one year(currently Robert Evens) Auditor for one year(currently vacant)

Article 3 To see if the legal voters Cavendish Fire District 2 will raise money and in what amount for the purpose of defraying expenses for the fiscal year July 1, 2018 to June 30th, 2019

 Robert Evens made a motion to approve the agenda. Bob Glidden seconded. All approved.

 Diane McNamara made a motion to add an Article 4 to the agenda called “any other business”.  Bob Glidden seconded. All approved.

 Bob Glidden made a motion to accept the Auditor’s report. Seconded by Michele Lindberg. All approved.

 Diane McNamara made the motion to elect Robert Evens for a three year term as a Prudential Committee member. Bob Glidden seconded.   All approved.

 Diane McNamara made the motion to elect Michele Lindberg as secretary for a one year term, seconded by Bob Glidden. All approved.

 Bob Glidden made a motion to elect Brendan McNamara as tax collector for one year. Seconded by Rebecca Nareau.  All approved.

 Lorens Lindberg, Sr. made a motion to elect Robert Evens as treasurer one year. Jason Nareau seconded.

 Auditor for one year. No one nominated. Position remains vacant.

 Carl Snyder made a motion to accept the proposed budget of $67,985 stating that it “seemed reasonable and responsible” Motion seconded by Lorens Lindberg, Sr.  Abe asked for discussion. Discussion ensued.    Stu Lindberg informed that voters that due to an unanticipated period of extreme cold the heating costs at the station had gone over budget by nearly $3000.  Stu made a motion to increase the budget by $3000.   This motion was seconded by Lorens Lindberg, Sr.  All approved.

 Under Article 4. Carl Snyder asked about the status of merger talks between the Cavendish Fire District 1 and Cavendish Fire District 2.  Carl gave the history of a few years back at town meeting where there was a nearly unanimous straw poll taken in favor of unifying the two departments in order to save taxpayers money and increase departmental performance.

 Stu Lindberg, to the best of his ability, explained that there exists a specific and detailed legal process for this merger to take place which includes approval by the Vermont Legislature.

 Bob Glidden stated that “it is debatable if any cost savings would be found in merging the fire departments.” Stu Lindberg stated that “it was possible to save money but  unsure of any cost savings as one never knows what kind of unexpected legal and financial burdens the state might impose upon the departments and the town while going through the process.”

 Michele Lindberg suggested that any private citizen interested in pursuing a merger take action on their own and contact the Vermont Secretary of State’s office or the Vermont League of Cities and Towns.

 John Turco made a motion to adjourn. Seconded by Bob Glidden.  All in favor.  Meeting adjourned at 8:24 p.m.

Cavendish Update 1/11/19 News/Events

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1/11/19 Cavendish Update

1. Cavendish Related News

2. Upcoming Programs from CCCA

3. Events

 

1. CAVENDISH RELATED NEWS

GMUSD Committee Asks TRSU to Reopen its Budget: For the second time in the two years since its inception, the Green Mountain Unified School District Finance Committee is asking the Two Rivers Supervisory Board to reopen its budget to find savings that will help reduce its funding increase from 4.31 percent or nearly half a million dollars. Chester Telegraph

 CAES Open: The year 2019 is off to a great start, at least according to Chester-Andover Elementary School Principal Katherine Fogg. Fogg, along with her team of teachers and other staffers and some 240 elementary school-aged children are finally back in their rightful school building as of Jan. 3, 2019, after a trying start to the school year. VT Journal

Tracking the Shutdown’s VT Impact: On Thursday, NPR had a half program on how the Government’s shutdown is impacting Vermonters. If you receive 3SquaresVT benefits, Hunger Free VT there is information on how to make sure you continue to receive benefits during the shutdown. NPR

Administration’s Memo Envisions Single School District for VT: In a draft policy memo dated Jan. 1, administration officials, led by Education Secretary Dan French, outline a radical idea for Vermont’s schools. In it, they suggest consolidating all school districts into one, abolishing the State Board of Education, and establishing four regional administrative entities, each with its own school board and superintendent, to oversee schools in the area.

2. UPCOMING PROGRAMS FROM CCCA

Solar Power Generation and Battery Storage: SunCommon in conjunction with the Cavendish Community and Conservation Association (CCCA) will host a free workshop to discuss solar power generation and battery storage on Sunday, January 27th at 1:00 p.m. at Crow’s Bakery on Depot Street in Proctorsville. Residents of any town are invited to attend.

 

The presentation will be both informational and educational, focusing on the steps to take in order to install solar at your home, or to join a community to share in a solar installation. Further, using the Tesla Powerwall you can capture excess solar power and use it during a power outage to keep your freezer frozen, your heater heating, your water flowing and your lights on. FMI: Robin Timko 226-7736

 Foxes in our Midst: On January 23rd at 6:00 p.m. CCCA will sponsor the next Walk and Talk Series presentation at the Cavendish Town Office, 37 High Street in Cavendish.

Michael Clough, representative of the Southern Vermont Natural History Museum will speak about an animal that lives in our midst and that we see quite often, but that we don’t know much about – the Fox. Hear about the habitats, mating habits, difference between the red and brown fox, their predators, and their diet. He will highlight the Fox’s ecology, habitat, and behavior. Also, the talk will focus on the best ways for humans to avoid conflicts. Come learn more about this beautiful animal. FMI: Claire Walker at 226-7259.

 Refreshments will be served at both events.

3. EVENTS: The Cavendish Town Budget process is now underway and the Select Board will be meeting on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6-8 at the Cavendish Town Office as part of this process.

JANUARY 14 (MONDAY): Cavendish Select Board Monthly Meeting 6:30 pm

• TRSU Board Meeting at CTES, 6-8 pm. See TRSU website for more information

JANUARY 18 (FRIDAY): Municipal utility payment due

JANUARY 21 (MONDAY): Martin Luther King Day Town Office closed

For information on upcoming events, go to the Cavendish Connects Calendar. For area events, check the Okemo Valley Chamber of Commerce calendar.  

IF YOU READ THIS PLEASE HELP SUPPORT CAVENDISH CONNECTS

Cavendish Update 1/4/19: TRSU/RT 103/News

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This issue of the Cavendish Update has been made possible in part by a donation from Peggy Svec. Thank you for your continued support.

 

CHECK THE CAVENDISH VT FACEBOOK PAGE DAILY FOR THE LATEST NEWS You don’t have to be a Facebook subscriber to see this page.

1/4/19 Cavendish Update

  1. Cavendish Related News

2. Transfer Station News

3. Events

 

1. CAVENDISH RELATED NEWS

Cavendish, Vermont Historic Timeline Updated: In January, the Cavendish Historical Society updates the Cavendish history timeline and makes it available at The Dish.

Two Rivers Supervisory Union/School Budgets: What is the role of the board in governing the Two Rivers Supervisory Union (TRSU)? This is especially applicable in the case of the Supervisory Union where the board’s financial decisions are not subject to approval by voters. Even before the new, post-Act 46 TRSU board came into being in July, several board members had questioned the expenditure requested for Ogment, an online system for “curriculum mapping and management” developed by EvoText of Burlington, Mass., and championed by Curriculum Director Michael Eppolito. Currently TRSU is the only school system using Ogment in VT, and Fred Marin, Cavendish’s rep to the TRSU, states that he’s searched for other places that use Ogment and couldn’t find any. Chester Telegraph

There are growing concerns that this year’s budget process is not much different than last year. The teachers have been told that $500,000 needs to be cut from the budget in order keep the overall increase between 2.6% and 3.5% (cost of living). It would appear that spending funds for an unproven piece of software does not to be a cost saving measure, particularly when teachers are already using PowerSchool and Google to store data and information. Further, as was discussed at length last year, what are the goals of the TRSU? Where’s the vision? On a more practical level, since Cavendish Town Elementary School’s (CTES) principal is on a one-year contract, what is being done for evaluation? Could the school be in the same position it was last year?

Route 103 Winterization More Touching Up: According to the VT Agency of Transportation, route 103 needs a bit more work. Between Ludlow Village and Mount Holly is still “milled,” leaving the surface rough and uneven. The temporary coating along that stretch didn’t hold. Milled roadways hold more water and thus are more dangerous when they freeze. Other issues include road lines being worn away. Agency of Transportation officials inspected the road on Dec. 28 and gave Pike Industries two weeks to come up with a plan to improve safety along the portion of road in question. AOT has suggested the company put up warning signs, which it has, and make more use of raised road markers where the paint isn’t holding. Rutland Herald

Concerns Raised Over New Springfield Hospital Consulting Firm: As Springfield Hospital begins a contract with Quorum Health Resources to understand its financial woes; the hospital’s physicians and staff are sharing concerns about Quorum’s financial mismanagement and lawsuits. Quorum, the Tennessee-based company that manages about 200 hospitals in 38 states, and its parent corporation, have faced numerous lawsuits over the past two decades for negligence, fraud and secrecy. VT Digger

VT Minimum Wage Increase: In Vermont, the minimum wage increased Tuesday from $10.50 per hour to $10.78. The Vermont wage is indexed to inflation. The minimum wage for tipped employees increased to $5.39 from $5.25. The federal minimum wage is $7.25, which was last raised in 2009.

 

2. CAVENDISH TRANSFER STATION NEWS: A couple of quick reminders:

Mercury is in more than thermometers: It can be in gauges, switches, flame sensors and temperature probes as well as in button cell batteries. You can learn more about these devices at the VT Agency of Natural Resources website. Such items cannot be disposed in the regular trash. If you have questions, or wish to have a device checked, please call Bruce MeEnaney-226-8045.

Christmas Batteries and Lights: Just a reminder that all types of batteries can be recycled at the transfer station, along with those strands of lights that no longer work.  If you missed the special Christmas post on recycling, go to Recycling Christmas Cavendish Style.

3. EVENTS: The Cavendish Town Budget process is now underway and the Select Board will be meeting on Tuesdays and Thursdays in January from 6-8 at the Cavendish Town Office as part of this process.

JANUARY 8 (TUESDAY): GMUSD Finance Committee Meeting, 5:30 pm at CTES

JANUARY 14 (MONDAY): Cavendish Select Board Monthly Meeting 6:30 pm

JANUARY 18 (FRIDAY): Municipal utility payment due

JANUARY 21 (MONDAY): Martin Luther King Day Town Office closed

For information on upcoming events, go to the Cavendish Connects Calendar. For area events, check the Okemo Valley Chamber of Commerce calendar.  

IF YOU READ THIS PLEASE HELP SUPPORT CAVENDISH CONNECTS