Promotion of Brattleboro was a primary topic at the regular meeting of the Brattleboro Selectboard Tuesday. Blue Whale Public Relations had some typical Zoom-related delays but otherwise gave a solid report on their early efforts to reach out to the media.
Hybrid meetings will continue for a while longer, favorable financing for the water treatment facility was announced, new stop signs are official, and Union Station might be sold for a dollar in order to save as much as $100,000.
Brattleboro Utilities and Parking Budgets for FY22 were adopted by the selectboard Tuesday evening. They also had an extended discussion of dependent care and reimbursing selectboard members for costs incurred.
Some DPW purchases were approved, a new ski jump skier statue will be manufactured and given to the town for winter display, and more.
The Brattleboro Selectboard will continue to review FY22 proposed budgets for the Parking and Utilities Funds at their next regular meeting. Either or both may be adopted.
The board will also buy two new dump trucks, discuss placement of a ski jumper sculpture on Main Street during winter months, figure out details of dependent care reimbursement for themselves, and consider buying a summer sidewalk tractor. You can bring up other items not on the agenda during public participation.
1. Academy School Addition project financing method and project timeline
2. Use of Reserves and Fund Balances for capital improvements
3. FY21 Fiscal Year to Date Statement
1. Call to Order
2. Approval of Minutes – December 2, 2020 and January 12, 2021
3. Preparation for FY22 WSESD Budget 2.23.21 Information Hearing
4. Academy School Addition project financing method and project timeline
5. FY21 Fiscal Year to Date Statement
The Brattleboro Selectboard spent the bulk of their primetime evening discussing a proposal from the Tenants Union of Brattleboro. They heard from tenants and landlords about a wide range of issues, realized the problem was bigger than what Brattleboro can solve by itself, but pressed on to work on an ordinance limiting what landlords collect and how that money is used. A new board will be created to hear rental housing security deposit disputes.
The Brattleboro Selectboard will hold a special meeting on Tuesday, September 22, 2020, on Zoom (with no physical location due to the ongoing social distancing requirements of COVID-19). It is anticipated that the Board will enter into executive session at 5:30pm to discuss the negotiating or securing of real estate purchase or lease options and the appointment or employment or evaluation of a public officer or employee. The Board will reconvene the business meeting at 6:15pm. The attached agenda contains information about how to access the meeting remotely, including the required “passcode.” Information about how to connect to the meeting is also posted on the homepage of the Town’s website. ASL interpreters will be available for deaf and hard-of-hearing community members.
NOTICE OF BOARD MEETING
The Windham Southeast School District Board will host a Public Information Meeting meet remotely at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 23, 2020 via Zoom:
There were many big issues at Tuesday’s meeting of the Brattleboro Selectboard but the biggest of them all was an extended discussion about dismantling a racist system by defunding the Brattleboro Police. Citizens were rather clear and consistent in asking that the General Fund budget be voted down, and that funding for the police be reassigned to social services.
The system moves slowly, they were told, and their attention should be placed on next year’s budget process. The board committed to making a re-evaluation of community safety a priority in the near future, but passed the budget by a 3-2 split vote.
Brattleboro utility rates will be going up at the next virtual meeting of the Brattleboro Selectboard. New water and sewer rates, the parking and general fund budgets, and salary increases will be approved.
The Town Manager will give a COVID-19 update, Brattleboro will consider joining a communications district, the Municipal Center renovations will inch forward, and more. You can bring up other items not on the agenda, of course, during public participations.
There is a current call across the nation to defund the police and to use that money for other things such as human services or education:
“Community groups advocating for defunding have put forward differing strategies, some merely opposing police budget increases, others advocating mass reductions, and some fighting for full defunding as a step toward abolishing police forces. Some initiatives are tied to the fight to close prisons. All are pushing for a reinvestment of those dollars in services.”
What does Brattleboro’s police budget look like?
The Brattleboro Selectboard held another virtual meeting Tuesday night. Utility rates are set to rise, the General Fund end-of-year looks pretty good, the FY21 Parking and Solid Waste budgets were discussed, preliminary options for holding Representative Town Meeting were presented, and dogs were warned of their illegality. Read on for the details.
An important school election is coming up! The WSESD Annual Meeting vote is Tuesday, June 30, 2020.
Follow this link for Information about the Windham Southeast School District FY ’21 Budget Vote including links to the Warning and a Sample Ballot.
The Budget Vote on Tuesday, June 30 is via Australian Ballot
The Brattleboro Selectboard will approve their own budget for the first time, due to a special act of the Vermont legislature to bypass Town Meeting Representatives this year in an effort to get the budget approved prior to the new fiscal year on July 1. The board will also discuss options for convening a Representative Town Meeting at some point.
Water and sewer rates will be raised, downtown parklets for businesses will be purchased, the Solid Waste Fund will be discussed and might be folded into the General Fund, another COVID-19 update will be given, and even more will happen during this packed agenda. Prediction: watch as Selectboard members mention that they hate the dog warrant language again this year! “It’s the owners, not the animals…” You can bring up other items and animals not on the agenda during Public Participation. Just don’t ask your questions in the chat room of the virtual meeting.
The Brattleboro Selectboard had a long discussion about their long discussion last week about face coverings. Is it too strict? Not stick enough? What about the children? They then moved on to a discussion of raising water and sewer rates to help pay for the new water filtration plant. Is 6% a year too much? Is 2% too low?
The final discussion was of the parking system, and how with no income and continued expenses, the budget doesn’t look so good. Should the Parking Fund remain an enterprise fund or be rolled back into the General Fund? And who has the best ceiling?
The Brattleboro Selectboard will hold a special meeting on Tuesday, May 26, 2020, at 6:15pm. In keeping with Governor Scott’s “Stay Home – Stay Safe” order, this meeting will be held with no physical location using GoToMeeting. The attached agenda contains information about how to access the meeting remotely. ASL interpreters will be available for deaf and hard-of-hearing community members.
The Brattleboro Selectboard passed a resolution at their Tuesday meeting requiring face coverings to be worn by customers and employees in all retail establishments. It was part of an expanded discussion of COVID-19 and business issues.
Many agenda items relating to Utility and Parking budgets were postponed to a special meeting next week.
COVID-19, and the Utilities Fund, will be the primary focus of the next regular, virtual meeting of the Brattleboro Selectboard.
The FY20 year-end budget will be reviewed, a new treasurer will be appointed, they will discuss the parking budget, and Brattleboro will apply for some grants. You can bring up other items not on the agenda during virtual public participation.
The Brattleboro Selectboard held a quick meeting to approve the FY21 budget, Town Meeting warning, and Representative Town Meeting warning. They also discussed a planned sidewalk for the new Hinsdale Bridge and changes to RT 142.
During public participation, citizens questioned the police chief about the recent uptick in vehicle break-ins.
The Brattleboro Selectboard will hold a special meeting on Tuesday, January 28, 2020, at 6:15pm in the Selectboard Meeting Room at the Municipal Center. An ASL interpreter will be available for deaf and hard-of-hearing community members.
Brattleboro Town Manager’s Office