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January 6th, 2011
MIDDLEBURY — Those working in Middlebury College’s sustainability office are feeling a bit more “chipper” this week.
On Tuesday, Middlebury College employees began harvesting the first batch of wood chips from its willow test plot in two fields to the west of the campus off Route 125, bringing the school’s biomass plant one step closer to processing its own wood fuel.
BRANDON — A fire destroyed the headquarters of a well-respected local building company after firefighters were called to the business twice on Sunday.
Firefighters first responded to Naylor and Breen Builders on Route 7 South in Brandon at about 2 p.m. Sunday after getting reports of smoke and flames. Brandon Fire Chief Bob Kilpeck said that fire began in the paint finishing room of the building, which housed offices in front and a cabinetry shop in the rear.
VERGENNES — The first of five forums on Addison Northwest Supervisory Union unification under one-board governance will be held on Tuesday at Vergennes Union High School.
The meeting on the proposal to operate the four ANwSU schools under one 12-member board will begin at 6:30 p.m. and run for a scheduled 90 minutes.
The five ANwSU towns will vote on unification on Town Meeting Day. All five towns must vote yes if the change is to be adopted.
MIDDLEBURY — The nation of Haiti will mark a somber anniversary on Jan. 12, the date one year ago on which a magnitude 7 earthquake devastated the capital city of Port-au-Prince and surrounding communities.
Members of the Memorial Baptist Church of Middlebury are planning a trip to Haiti with aspirations of making the earthquake anniversary more about hope than about somber reflection.
STARKSBORO — Kerry Kurt runs her general store a little bit differently than the average business owner.
On any given afternoon, one might approach the Horse n Rebel Grille and Gallery on Route 116 in Starksboro and find a note on the door reading, “Out on the farm, call if you need me,” accompanied by a phone number.
And it’s not unusual for Kurt to return from her chores to find that people have left notes for her on the counter inside with a dollar for the Arizona Iced Tea, or an old saddle.
MIDDLEBURY — Singer/songwriter Ezra Axelrod’s upcoming album, “American Motel,” represents the Middlebury College alum’s journey through the last few years.
Axelrod’s music represents the meandering experience of many 20-somethings that publications like The New York Times and “The Atlantic” reported on this past summer.
Middlebury residents have received a real bargain from town taxes during the past two years as taxpayers have benefited from the same level of services with no additional tax increases. Think of that. While food prices have gone up, health care has skyrocketed 20 to 30 percent, and most other expenses have seen inflationary hikes of 4 percent or more, town taxes held steady.
It is not surprising, then, to see a projected increase of 2.13 cents on the municipal tax rate in the draft budget, and possibly more if the select board or townspeople think additional town spending is beneficial.
“Honey, listen,” my father says, “you and your brother are 99 percent likely to give back to society. But there’s always that 1 percent, and you’ve got some artistic tendencies.”
This was a motivational speech given to me the summer after my junior year of college.