Addison town, school talk land swap

ADDISON — This past Thursday the Addison Central School board met with members of Addison’s Town Hall Committee to discuss cleaning up land ownership issues around the school, the town clerk’s office and the nearby former Addison Town Hall.
The meeting came in advance of proposed July 2017 unification, which would transfer ownership of school property to the new unified district.
Currently, Addison Central uses some land near the entrance of the school that the town actually owns, plus other town-owned land on which to park buses. Meanwhile, the town uses some school land for its larger parking area, and also would need some school-owned property if the town were to renovate the now-vacant former Addison Town Hall into a town office building and community center. Town officials have been studying that idea for a decade.
With the March 1 vote set on whether to unite Addison Northwest Supervisory Union schools under one-board governance, Addison town and school officials agree they would like to have the right entities have title to the right land.
If ANwSU towns vote yes and unification passes, towns would sell their school property to the unified district for $1 before July 2017, with the provision that any of those properties would be offered back to the towns for $1 if it were no longer used for educational purposes.
ANwSU Superintendent JoAn Canning said Addison town and school officials are working on a memorandum of understanding that would work toward those transactions before July 2017.
“The town has been in touch with the school board over a period of time over whether they could do a land swap,” she said.
To move things along, last week the school board voted to ask residents on March 1 to grant the board the authority to make such a deal with the selectboard.   
“The board did agree there would be an additional article that would go to the voters asking them to authorize the board to negotiate a land swap,” Canning said. 

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