Cavendish Update 8/2/19: Taxes/SB Mtg/Break-Ins/Events



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8/2/19 Cavendish Update

1.Cavendish Tax Rate Calculation Error

2. Cavendish Break-Ins

3. Cavendish Related news

4. Wednesday Concert: Chris Kleeman

5. Events

1.TAX RATE CALCULATION ERROR: At the July 29 Select Board (SB) meeting, Cavendish Town Clerk Diane McNamara informed the board that an error was made in calculating the FY 19-20 Fire District tax rates. According to the unapproved minutes of this meeting, posted to the Municipal website, Diane said she miscalculated the fire district tax rates for the 20192020 tax bills, which had already been mailed out. She handed out some information to the Board showing that the billed rate, the corrected rate, and the resulting shortfall which totals $194,737.

Diane explained that there are three options to make up this shortfall-sending out supplemental tax bills, resetting the tax accounting system and issuing new tax bills, or borrowing the money and making it up on next year’s bill. She discussed the pros and cons of these options with the Board.

The Board decided that sending out new or supplemental bills would cause a lot of confusion for taxpayers and mortgage services, and that borrowing the money or taking out a line of credit would be less disruptive. They agreed that the Town should send out a letter to all taxpayers to explain the situation.

Below is a copy of the letter sent to Cavendish Property Owners. If you have questions, please call the town office 802-226-7291.

July 30, 2019

Dear Property Owner,

This letter is to inform you of a math error that was made in the calculation of the FY19-20 Fire District tax rates and to explain how we plan to resolve it.

The impact of this error is as follows:

Fire District #1 tax rate was set at 0.0008 rather than 0.0801 per $100 of assessed value resulting in a shortfall of $116,835 in fire district tax collections for this year.

Fire District #2 tax rate was set at 0.0007 rather than 0.0672 per $100 of assessed value resulting in a shortfall of $77,903 in fire district tax collections for this year.

The Select Board members considered several options to resolve the shortfall of funds and made the decision to borrow the funds during the FY19-20 tax year in order to meet the budgets of both Fire Districts. This means that the FY19-20 Fire District shortfall will be added to the FY20-21 Fire District tax rates.

We sincerely apologize for this error and for any confusion it may cause. Please feel free to call the Town Clerk/Treasurer’s office with any questions you may have.

Cavendish Town Treasurer/Tax Collector

2. CAVENDISH BREAK-INS: In the last six weeks, there have been reports of break ins and/or items being stolen in both Cavendish and Proctorsville. According to the VT State Police, on 07-30-19 at approximately 1:50 pm, a resident of Cavendish reported swimming at the Gorge near Power Plant Road when she learned from other swimmers that her vehicle had a smashed driver's side window.  The resident returned to her vehicle and found that an unknown person(s) entered it and stole a wallet containing her Vermont issued identification card and other items. Anyone with information on the incident is asked to contact the Westminster State Police Barracks at 802-254-2382 and reference case number 19B104410.

It turns out multiple people are reporting that their cars were broken into and items stolen while swimming at the Cavendish Gorge.

The immediate reaction is that these are drug related crimes. However, that can't be confirmed or denied, nor is it known whether the criminals are coming from Cavendish or neighboring towns.

Unfortunately, like every place in the country, Cavendish is not immune to the drug epidemic. To help those impacted by addiction, there is information on line at the Cavendish Connects website: Cavendish Resources for Addiction: Drugs and Cavendish Resources for Addiction: Alcohol

To reduce the risks of break ins and thefts, please use the following resources:

• Car:  Tips From a Former Car Thief on How to Protect Your Car

• Home: Protect yourself from home invasion

• Second Home Owners: 5 Tips for Securing your vacation home

Be mindful of who is in your neighborhood and take note of unusual behavior. Be particularly aware of second homeowner properties as they are often more likely to be targeted. If you see something that doesn't seem right, call 911 and report it to the state police.



Timko Replaces Kell on the Select Board: In addition to dealing with the Fire District Tax Rate (see Item 1 above), the Select Board approved George Timko as the replacement for SB member Michael Kell, who resigned due to a move out of state. If Timko is interested in completing the three-year term of Kell’s, he will need to run in March 2020. Other business conducted at the meeting included, Jill Flinn’s letter of resignation as Animal Control Officer and approval of the Golden Stage Inn’s request to sell alcohol at the upcoming Honey Festival.   

Water Tests for the Black River: Little Ascutney did not test safe this week. Water testing was done on July 31 after a heavy rain the previous evening, which may have had an impact on test results. All other areas tested safe.  Thank you BRAT for your continued dedication to the Black River and the safety of those who use it. Note that anything above 235 CFU is considered unsafe for recreational purposes. Specific results are as follows:

Cavendish Gorge: 40 CFU (Safe)

Greven Field: 161 CFU (Safe)

Buttermilk Falls: 59 CFU (safe)

Little Ascutney: 1,550 CFU (Unsafe)

Tolles Power Dam:50 CFU (Safe)

News from the Cavendish Historical Society (CHS): It’s blueberry picking time at the McEnaney’s-354 Miner Road, Chester.  This is one of the fundraisers that supports CHS’s Young Historian’s program.  Loads of plump, organic berries waiting for you. While picking buckets are available, you’ll need your own container for taking them home.. If it’s daylight, they’re open. No dogs, but. kids are welcome and those under 12 get a free pound if they pick them themselves. $3.00 a pound (not pint).  The CHS Newsletter is now on line:

Bottled Water Pulled from Shelves in VT Stores: State officials announced Thursday that multiple brands of generic bottled water sold in-state have PFAS levels more than five times above Vermont’s new standard. The company that owns the spring, Spring Hill Dairy, provides bottled water under store-brand labels at Shaw’s, Cumberland Farms, CVS (Ice Canyon), Best Yet, 365, IGA, HyTop and Food Club. VT Digger


4. CAVENDISH CONCERT: CHRIS KLEEMAN: On Wednesday, August 7th at 6:00 p.m., weather permitting, the Vermont based master blues singer and legendary song stylist, Chris Kleeman will perform at the Cavendish summer music series on the Svec Memorial Green in Proctorsville. This concert is sponsored by Good Earth Landscape Company. As always, the concerts are free and open to everyone.  Rain dates will be announced on the Cavendish Facebook page. For more information please call Robin at 226-7736.



AUGUST 7 (WEDNESDAY): Concert at the Proctorsville Green, 6 pm. Free and open to the public. Chris Kleeman (Blues guitar) sponsored by Good Earth Landscaping

AUGUST 14 (WEDNESDAY): Concert at the Proctorsville Green, 6 pm. Free and open to the public. Yankee Chank (Cajun/Zydeco dance band) sponsored by Murdocks

AUGUST 17 (SATURDAY): The Annual Chrome & Craft Festival at the Fletcher Farm School for the Arts & Crafts on Route 103 in Ludlow. From 10-4 (rain or shine).

AUGUST 21 (WEDNESDAY): Concert at the Proctorsville Green, 6 pm. Free and open to the public. John Sullivan and Friends sponsored by DG Bodyworks.

SEPTEMBER 14 (SATURDAY): VT Golden Honey Festival. 10-4 Part craft fair, part food festival, the VT Golden Honey Festival is a community favorite. Located on the lawn of the Golden Stage Inn, 399 Depot St. in Proctorsville. Proceeds of this event will benefit VT Coalition of Runaway and Homeless Youth (Ludlow and Proctorsville. For vendor and other information: or 802-226-7744 (Julie).

SEPTEMBER 18 (WEDNESDAY): 2-6 Pm Hazardous Waste Collection at the Springfield Transfer Station. For a printable list of what to bring and what not to bring, click on the Southern Windsor/Windham Counties Solid Waste Management District.

The next collections will be in the spring of 2020. FMI: 802- 674-9235

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