I’ll be live-blogging the meeting again, so follow along and feel free to ask questions. They’ll be getting started soon, and I’ll be adding regular updates in the comments below.
The biggest news of the Tuesday meeting of the Brattleboro Selectboard came not from the agenda but introductory remarks. The Town manager announced that Planning Services Director Rod Francis was leaving Brattleboro in the next couple of weeks.
This was followed by an unscheduled but surprisingly active discussion of aggressive panhandling in the downtown area.
Beyond those matters, the skatepark hired a design firm and got some extra cash, contracts and grants were approved, the utility budget passed, a long resolution was adopted, and more.
There will be no Town panhandling sign. That was the split decision of the Brattleboro Selectboard Tuesday evening.
The board had an active and long night. Much of it had to do with financial matters and planning, such as approving a letter of intent to rent space in the Municipal Center, reviewing long term financial plans, buying a fire truck, debating the thickness of single use plastic bags, and contemplating energy issues.
Budget season starts officially at the next meeting, but it peeked its head in and said hello this week.
Brattleboro’s Town Manager revealed the results of his summer explorations of issues of diversity, inclusion, and equity. He got generally good reviews for the summary of his report, but more than a few requested some additional specifics be included. Brattleboro seems to be in a good position to make progress over the long term, but benchmarks and budgets might help.
The pesky panhandling sign returned in a semi-uncertain form, with wording in question and sponsoring organizations and services asking for their logos to be removed. The private effort was to be a collaboration, but appears to have offended a few too many.
The board also signed a statement in support of other climate agreements being signed around the globe. (For Kate O’Connor’s sake, I’ll say here that Brattleboro has been working on climate issues for a long time, is committed to action, and will continue to be so.)
All this, and possibly more.