HANCOCK — The Hancock town meeting ran pretty smoothly on Tuesday as residents gathered for the first time in the town firehouse while the town hall gets repairs.
Those in attendance rejected one article — it asked whether they wished to spend $50,000 on a used tanker truck for the fire department. But the rejection came only as a housekeeping matter since the $50,000 appropriation was added to the town spending plan.
The town spending plan, which was warned as $417,470, was amended to $467,470 so the tanker truck expenditure would appear there. Voters then approved the spending plan on a voice vote.
Residents also OK’d appropriations to a dozen organizations, the largest of which is $19,380 to White River Valley Ambulance.
School spending for the coming year proposed at $847,654 was approved by voice vote. That amount was down 12.2 percent from the current year due largely to changes in the number of students in town. It is estimated that spending per equalized pupil would rise about 1.2 percent to $17,344.
Bruce Hyde, Hancock’s representative to the White River Valley Supervisory Union school district, discussed the April 11 vote on whether to created the Granville Hancock Unified School District. If this is approved, and some other moves in the White River Valley SU are approved, Granville Hancock would see four years of property tax breaks. In addition to the tax breaks, it is hoped that the unification would level out the swings in student numbers and thus swings up and down in the education taxes residents pay. Town Clerk Olivia Drury said preserving school choice seemed to be important to those involved in the discussion. A hearing on the merger will be held April 10, 6 p.m., at the Hancock Town Clerk’s office.
Selectman John Ross was returned for another three-year term on the selectboard without opposition. At a school board meeting on Tuesday, board member Monica Collins took over as chair from Ross.
Incumbent school board member Kenneth Troumbley was also re-elected unopposed to the school board. School board member Rose Juliani told Hancock residents that if they approve the school unification item on April 11 causing her term to expire April 30 then she will not seek election to the school board again.
After many years on the library board, Geraldine Twitchell stepped down and Jody Troumbley took her place.
Marge Ross again organized a wonderful pot luck that was enjoyed by all after the meeting.
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