News, Wolcott

Selectboard Set to Vote on Budget at January 17 Meeting

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by Gazette Staff

WOLCOTT – At its January 3 regular meeting, the Wolcott Select Board voted to add a property to the buyback program, made final changes to its draft budget for next fiscal year, and accepted bids for work to be done on town buildings.

Devon Woods, who lives along North Wolcott Road in the village, addressed the select board regarding the condition of her property following the July flood. Board chair Linda Martin noted that the state has visited the property and acknowledged an imminent risk to safety. Woods feels that it is not safe for her family and her to live there, and any financial assistance being offered by the government is insufficient. Woods stated that she desperately needs the property to be included in a buyback program. After discussion, the board voted to move forward with an application for the property to be included in the buyout program. Martin will meet with Woods to complete the necessary paperwork.

The board discussed individual line items in the draft budget and made adjustments. The final vote on the budget will be at the January 17 select board meeting.

The board discussed whether to include the Lamoille County sheriff’s budget in the select board budget or have it as a separate article at town meeting. The board will agree on the finalized warning at the January 17 meeting.

In his project manager report, Kurt Klein reported that the town is still meeting with FEMA and could receive a settlement letter from the municipal insurer soon. Klein also said that estimates are being sought for an air exchange system at the town garage.

In the agenda slot for select board review/action, Martin discussed the properties that have been approved for a buy-out and what the next steps in the process will be.

Also, the town is looking into purchasing a guardrail to be installed at a location along North Wolcott Road.

The board had previously discussed seeking additional state funds for the wastewater project. The request was increased to $1,435,000, the maximum that can be requested.

The siting of the septic system on elementary school property was approved last month. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) regarding the use of the land needs final approval. The board agreed to have the town’s attorney review the MOU. Wolcott is on a priority list with the Clean Water State Revolving Fund, which provides low-cost financial assistance for water projects.

The board then reviewed estimates for repair and improvements to the Fire and Highway Department building. Sight Above Carpentry, LLC submitted an estimate of $1,270.75 for material and labor to remove existing rain gutters and facia board from the rear of the building, add support, and reinstall the facia and gutters. Gould Corporation submitted an estimate for work on the exterior of the building, including installation of motion-activated lights for a total of $1,455. The board voted to accept the estimates. Invoices for the work will be paid from the building maintenance fund.

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