Town Meeting Wrap 2015: Addison

ADDISON — If Town Meeting Day polling is any indication, voters in Addison were willing to open up their wallets for most items on the school and municipal warnings — except for the Vergennes Union High School’s general operating budget. As in the other five towns that feed VUHS, Addison voters on Tuesday rejected the proposed $10.47 million high school spending plan; in Addison the tally was 140 no, 123 yes.
Residents did, however, approve the level-funded Addison Central School spending plan of $1,543,138; the vote was 166 yes, 98 no.
The high school budget faced an uphill battle as school administrators had budgeted an increase in spending of about $1 million, or 11 percent, over the one that district voters approved on the second try last spring. The increase was to help dig VUHS out of its deep financial hole and would better reflect the cost of operating the school after years of underfunding key items by previous administrators.
Without an approved high school budget, it was too early to talk about property tax impact in Addison.
On the municipal spending front, residents voted, 190-67, in favor of the proposed $303,038 budget for the town office and administrative spending in 2015-2016, a decrease of almost $4,800. The highway budget of $682,712 (which represented an increase of about $31,600 from last year) passed 198-60.
Overall, that town spending represents an increase of about 2.8 percent from last year.
There will be a new face on the Addison selectboard, as incumbent Joy Pouliot chose not to seek re-election. Newcomer Peter Briggs won a two-year term on the selectboard with 241 tallies; he was unopposed.
Also winning unopposed elections to the selectboard were incumbents Jeff Kauffman, the board’s longtime chairman (a three-year term with 236 votes), and Roger Waterman, who was appointed in 2014 to a vacancy and earned a one-year term with 237 votes.
Longtime Addison Central School Board member Rob Hunt was unopposed and won another three-year term with 190 votes. One empty seat on the school board had no takers. 

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