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Vergennes city meeting wrap-up 2018

VERGENNES — Vergennes residents on Tuesday strongly backed a 20-year, $500,000 bond to support the purchase of a new pumper truck for the Vergennes Fire Department. The vote was 401-96.
The new truck will replace a 24-year-old pumper that department leaders said is becoming unreliable and expensive to repair. City residents do not vote on the municipal budget; rather the city council will approve a budget at the end of June.
City Manager Mel Hawley recently estimated the bond will add 0.2 cent to the Vergennes, Panton and Waltham tax rates in 2019-2020 and about 0.67 cent in 2020-2021, and then slowly decline from there over the life of the bond. 
No contested races were on the ballot. Three council incumbents ran without opposition: Lynn Donnelly (382 votes), Matt Chabot (362) and Renny Perry (359), who as senior alderman recently took over as mayor following Michael Daniels’ resignation.
Mark Koenig (425 votes) was returned to the Addison Northwest School District (ANWSD) board without opposition.
All nonprofit organizations that requested funding earned support.
Vergennes voters backed the proposed $21.1 million ANWSD budget, 355-145. It won overall, 952-551.
School officials estimated that budget could increase the tax rate in ANWSD communities by about 8 cents, depending on final legislative decisions.  
The ANWSD tax rate increases would mean around $80 of additional taxes per $100,000 of assessed value for those property owners who pay based solely on the value of their homes. About two-thirds of area residents pay based on their income and would get prebates.
Vergennes voters also backed a $7.63 million ANWSD bond proposal, 355-145. It won approval overall, 987-515. School board members said the bond would pay for a critical list of energy efficiency, fire safety and security problems at all four district schools.
Board members have emphasized the bond will not increase taxes due to savings through the energy improvements and to revenue from a solar array proposed for the Vergennes Union High School roof, and because payments on the bond that funded the 2000 VUHS renovation and expansion will soon end.

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