Weybridge Town Meeting Preview 2019

WEYBRIDGE — Weybridge voters at their town meeting next week will be asked to take a first step in reorganizing their community library.
Article seven on Weybridge’s warning asks voters to dissolve the Cotton Free Library Board of Trustees. Plans call for that board to be replaced by a committee that would work to resuscitate a public library that has been inactive for more than two decades. A major reason: The 106-year-old library building, located off Quaker Village Road, has deteriorated and needs significant repairs before it can be put back into public use, according to local officials.
Residents will vote on a proposed 2019-2020 general fund budget of $156,850. That’s around $30,000 more than the current $126,123 spending plan. Selectboard Chairman Don Mason said the budget plan includes $25,000 that would be added to a new fire equipment replacement fund. Voters last year agreed to make that $25,000 commitment on an annual basis, within the general fund budget.
The 2019-2020 highway fund request comes in at $511,900, up only slightly from this year’s spending plan of $509,119.
Other articles on Weybridge’s town meeting warning seek:
•  $25,000 for local fire protection services.
•  $17,000 to continue the town-sponsored recycling program.
•  Up to $95,000 to buy a John Deer 444K loader for the highway department. The purchase price would be borrowed from the town’s equipment fund and replaced over a five-year period.
•  A combined total of $26,775 for various nonprofits that deliver a variety of services to Weybridge residents.
There are no contested local elections on the ballot this year. Running unopposed are Alix O’Meara, selectboard, two years; Megan Sutton, selectboard, three years; Spence Putnam, town moderator, one year; Kristine Bowdish, town constable, two years.
Weybridge will, however, get to weigh in on a five-person race for three Middlebury seats on the Addison Central School District board. The race for the those three-year seats involves incumbents James Malcolm, Lorraine Gonzalez Morse, Steve Orzech, and challengers Betty Kafumbe and Ryan Torres.
Local voters will also cast ballots for ACSD board candidates Amy McGlashan and Mary Cullinane, running unopposed for three-year terms representing Ripton and Weybridge, respectively.
Proposed 2019-2020 spending for Weybridge Elementary School will be reflected in a global ACSD budget that voters will field on March 5. That budget proposal is for $37,794,916, to fund Middlebury Union middle and high schools, the ACSD central office and the seven member elementary schools in Bridport, Cornwall, Middlebury, Ripton, Salisbury, Shoreham and Weybridge. The ACSD spending plan reflects a 1.9-percent increase in local education spending and a 3.35-percent boost in spending per equalized pupil, compared to the current year.
If approved, the budget is expected to result in an education property tax rate of $1.6080 for Bridport, up slightly from the current $1.60, according to the ACSD’s fiscal year 2020 budget book.
Weybridge town meeting will start at 7 p.m. on Monday, March 4, at Weybridge Elementary School. Australian ballot voting will take place the next day, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., at the Weybridge Town Clerk’s office.

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