A combative public greeted the selectboard to kick off their Tuesday night meeting. The quick version: downtown is unsafe and your website sucks.
After that was out of the way, the board was treated to a discussion of I-91 exit 1 bridge repairs next spring and summer, emergency housing plans, and about EMS transition items such as potential municipal revenue, the RFI process, and a new project-related website.
Brattleboro Selectboard endorsed a plan put forth by Town Manager John Potter that offers an aggressive summer schedule for gathering input from board members, staff, EMS providers , other towns, and the public. It kicks off at the next board meeting and will be a regular item for the second meeting of each month until decisions have been made.
Brattleboro will celebrate Juneteenth henceforth. The Agricultural Loan Fund has been updated to serve more people and the board held a first reading to find out the details. And green burials and properly-oriented Muslim burials will soon be options at the local cemetery
The Brattleboro Selectboard approved bike and pedestrian plan that, when implemented, will create a network of sidewalks and bike lanes throughout the town.
The board debated possible changes to budget meeting times, considering a return to the days when budgets would be held on off-days at odd times rather than regular Tuesday evenings. They also approved a one year extension for Golden Cross ambulance service.
New Brattleboro Selectboard members Peter Case and Franz Reichsman attended their first regular meeting since swearing-in. They were treated to discussions of rules and goals, the Windham Regional Commission, Representative Town Meeting, hazard mitigation, and more.
Town Manager John Potter suggested the board have a retreat to discuss short-term and longer-term goals and budgets, to which the board readily agreed.
Chair Ian Goodnow had an unusally rough night. He was 40 minutes past his usual 8 pm break time as he explained to the board his new goals for keeping the meeting on schedule. This included his new desire to limit public comments to just two minutes per person, per agenda item.
The Brattleboro Selectboard held a very long first meeting of Spring.
Despite pleas from the public, they pressed on with many issues they felt could not wait for new board members. From Community Safety to ARPA, the board ignored suggestions to improve their public perception and to increase public input.
A special hearing by the Brattleboro Selectboard to consider health violations cited at 16 Washington Street had much discussion by all concerned – except one key individual: the property owner. Kurt Daims didn’t attend his hearing, and the board did not look kindly on such an action. He did issue a statement via BCS delivered to the board, but it wasn’t enough.
The new train station project was again described in detail, ARPA funds were discussed, the tree ordinance was adopted, and more.
Hi all. It’s a selectboard meeting night and usually I’d willingly volunteer to sit through the 3-4 hour thing and type up everything everyone has to say. It’s a bit hard for me to do tonight, though. I’m tired, slightly injured, and would rather tell you about a dream I had about the selectboard. It’s a good one!
I’m tired because I just got back from a weekend in Buffalo, cleaning out the family home of 80+ years. It was built by my grandparents, was the first place I was taken after being born, the site of many a Christmas and visit, as well as family weddings, births, Thanksgiving dinners and more.
Public restrooms were a major topic of discussion for the board at the regular Tuesday meeting. Nothing, of course, was decided. The board also allowed the Assessors ask Representative Town Meeting Representatives to agree to a town-wide re-appraisal of taxable properties.
There were financial and EMS updates, and a discussion of further revising meeting agenda formats to reflect anticipated times of agenda items. (Good luck with that… says this reporter.)
The Brattleboro Selectboard held their first regular meeting of the new year, and new Town Manager John Potter was on hand to answer questions and advise the board.
They discussed changes to the liquor license application requirements, backing off a previous BAPC suggestion that hasn’t had the desired results. They also had an extended discussion about the type of Representative Town meeting to hold this year, and heard from the public about homeless people and cold weather.
The Brattleboro Selectboard held their final regular meeting of 2022, taking up issues of finance, cannabis, and EMS services. The AP Triton report gave the board four options of EMS services. The top recommendation of the consultants, though, was to get Brattleboro Fire Department up to national performance standards asap.
The board also heard a well argued critique of their recent police budget discussions.
A long night of budget talk, with nods to McNeill’s. Plus, Interim Town Manager Patrick Moreland admits he forgot to add in repayment of a bond in the preliminary budget.
Should we fill more potholes? Should we build a year-round pool? Will homes get re-assessed soon? Is it called global warming? These are the issues of the day.
Quite a few business and organization directors had harsh words for the Brattleboro Selectboard regarding downtown crimes, especially at the Transportation Center. Almost all mentioned break-ins or thefts, and quite a few reminded the board that the Transportation Center is town-owned and municipally- controlled. In other words – it’s your problem.
After many hours, the board voted to get price quotes on a new camera system for the Transportation Center, and possible consider some other steps, maybe, after we do a timeline and budget season is coming up, y’know. Can’t promise anything, but we feel your pain.
The new bike ordinance was almost adopted by the Brattleboro Selectboard, but it looked strange upon a second review, and was delayed until the next meeting.
Reps from AP Triton said they, too, would not be giving much weight to community input gather by their own community survey on EMS feasibility. They will present four options, but not a preferred choice, and will leave it to the board to come to their own conclusions. They are also 75% done with their work, but would love to hear from the public at their Wednesday night meeting.
The board bought their simulation machine, and started a Charter Review Commission at the last moment possible, despite earlier requests to get the process going multiple times in the past few years.
The Brattleboro Selectboard continued to celebrate their EMS decisions, and voted to make a third ambulance and 24-7 AEMT position permanent.
The board also discussed diversity and inclusion, especially as it relates to Republicans, and contemplated the best way to interview and appoint committee members.
The Brattleboro Selectboard got into a rather detailed discussion of DV Fiber’s plans to provide high speed internet throughout southeastern Vermont. It stated out as a simple request for some closet space, but expanded into a description of the network and coming plans for service.
The board also approved a grant application for housing assistance and accepted a grant for bike paths.
The Brattleboro Selectboard continued their careful consideration of abortion rights. They heard testimony about the possible town resolution from the Town Lawyer and a State Representative in addition to members of the public. In the end it was decided to do nothing, the safest option for now.
Brattleboro will be getting energy saving incentives and rebates as part of a special program with Efficiency Vermont. They especially want to hear from renters!
The Brattleboro Selectboard discussed their own powers of resolution and whether they could do anything at all on the issue of abortion rights. They decided their lawyer-approved resolution needed more teeth, but also no chance of disruption to the State, and maybe funding, but not any special funding, and maybe something else as yet undetermined. They’ll take up the urgent issue again at their next meeting.
There were grave concerns about data collection and not sharing any data with bounty hunters. A bit later, board members were impressed by the ambulance data being collected locally and asked for even more EMS data from the Fire Department.
It was a gloomy and restless mood amongst many members of the public. Many expressed feelings of impending doom. Two asked for a special session of Representative Town Meeting.
It was a really long Brattleboro Selectboard meeting with not much getting done! They heard about downtown safety issues, but took no action. They approved a mural design they couldn’t see. There will be more places to buy liquor. The preferred bridge design was selected. And then it was 10:30 pm with discussions of a woman right to choose and EMT issues, among other things, still awaiting ample discussion. They ended up postponing much of the agenda to a future meeting.
The Brattleboro Selectboard agreed to the Golden Cross contract addendum of a free 90-day extra staff and ambulance offer, which the Fire Chief explained came at his suggestion.
They also held a first reading about fines and penalties for rental housing violations, heard public comments about cameras, announced a possibility of a downtown police substation, learned about Tri-Park’s current situation, and more.
The Brattleboro Selectboard held one of their longer meetings in some time. The public was active! Complaints about downtown crime, lack of action on climate change, and open meetings kept the board busy until after 10:30pm.
Of note, the Town acknowledged their violation of open meeting protocols and adopted a new two-part process to make sure it won’t happen again. This wasn’t enough for most people, who wanted a more detailed accounting of the EMS decision making process.
The board changed RTM districts to conform with state updates, adopted Utility and Parking budgets, and poured luke-warm water on a suggestion to bring back the electric trolley.