2016 Bridport Town Meeting Wrap Up

BRIDPORT — Bridport at its town meeting this week agreed to join a unified Addison Central School District (ACSD) that will represent all seven Middlebury-area communities, and passed all of the money items on its warning.
Townspeople also picked Joan Huestis over David Bronson, 202 to 194, in a two-person race for one spot on the selectboard.
Bridport residents voted 334 to 98 in favor of the unified ACSD, which will govern all of the schools in the Addison Central Supervisory Union under a single budget (see related story, Page 1A). Townspeople also participated in the election of all 13 ACSD board members, and helped resolve a contested race for Bridport’s seat on the new panel. In that race, Bridport School Director Suzanne Buck defeated Addison Central Supervisory Union board Chairman Rick Scott by a 1,538 to 1,182 tally, with votes coming from all seven towns in the union. In Bridport, the polling went for Scott, 244 to 137.
The proposed Bridport Central School budget of $1,562,807 for the 2016-2017 passed by a 298-135 vote.
Residents OK’d, by voice vote, a combined town-highway budget for 2016-2017 that will require a property tax levy of $947,144.
Also gaining voter approval were articles seeking:
•  A $315,000 replacement project for the Crown Point Road Bridge. The town has applied for up to $175,000 in state grants to help pay for the span, also known as the Sunderland Bridge.
•  Up to $217,000, in the form of a five-year loan, for the purchase of a new grader.
•  $10,750 for the purchase of a wood chipper.
•  A change in the town charter that would allow the selectboard to appoint the town clerk and treasurer, who will be able to reside outside of Bridport. The current town clerk and treasurer will be invited to continue in their respective jobs.
•  $12,500 for the Bridport Fire Department.
•  $8,000 for the Town Line First Response.
•  A combined total of $23,023 for various charities and nonprofits that benefit Bridport residents.
Those running unopposed for local office this year included Earl Audet, selectboard, two years; Valerie Bourgeois, town clerk, one year; Irene Zaccor, town treasurer, one year; Paul Plouffe, Bridport school director, one year; and Rick Scott, UD-3 school director, two years. There were currently no takers for a two-year spot on the Bridport School Board.

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