Town Meeting Preview 2015: Salisbury

SALISBURY — Business at Salisbury’s annual meeting will include some proposed changes to the way in which the town clerk and treasurer are selected, as well as the manner in which they will be expected to perform their respective jobs.
The March 3 Australian ballot in Salisbury will include six separate articles calling for town charter changes relating to the clerk and treasurer positions. If approved (and endorsed by the Legislature), they would allow the town to:
•  Appoint (as opposed to elect) the treasurer for a term of one year.
•  Elect a town clerk for a term of up to one year, and clearly delineate the responsibilities of that job. According to the proposed charter change, the town clerk would take on duties stipulated by state statutes, as well as 10 additional assignments that would include: Assisting the public during town office hours, maintaining the electronic email files of town officials ensuring that privileged information is not divulged, assisting in the production of the annual report, and attending the first monthly meeting of the selectboard.
Residents will be asked to approve a general fund budget of $200,097, down slightly from the $202,067 that voters OK’d for the current year.
The proposed highway budget comes in at $442,587, up from the current $393,359.
Other articles on the Salisbury town meeting agenda seek:
•  Elimination of the office of auditor and re-establishment of the local board of auditors.
•  Establishment of a “paving account” to which the community can add funds to maintain its highways.
•  A combined total of $72,460 for the Salisbury Volunteer Fire Department and a variety of Addison County-based social service organizations.
The Salisbury Community School spending plan is being proposed at $1,691,196, which would be a 3.9-percent increase compared to this year’s budget of $1,627,202. But Salisbury’s K-12 homestead education property tax rate is being forecast at $1.80, which would be a 10-cent bump from the current rate of $1.70.
School officials explained the jump in the tax rate is in part due to the fact that the school has less reserve revenue to apply to this year’s spending plan.
There are no contested local elections this year. Running unopposed are Wayne Smith, one year, moderator; Susan Scott, one year, town clerk; Jackie Devoid and Tom Scanlon, three years and two years, respectively, selectboard; and Daniel Kuczynski, one year, town lister.
There are currently no takers for a three-year term and two two-years terms on the Salisbury Community School board.
Salisbury’s annual meeting will be held on Monday, March 2, at 7 p.m. at the Salisbury Community School. Australian ballot voting will take place the next day, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., at the town offices.

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