Elections and budgets dominate Town Meeting 2019

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Town Meeting Day 2019 Vermont

Town Meeting 2019! Clockwise: Warren voters vote by a show of hands on funding for knotweed control. Leo Laferriere, Waitsfield Conservation Commission, urges support for the town’s restroom, recreation and conservation fund. Fayston Select Board chair, Jared Cadwell, explains the budget. Moretown voters listen to a budget presentation.

Town Meeting 2019 was a day of budgets and roads as well as the election of local officials when Valley voters headed to Town Meeting on March 5.

In Moretown, Kristen Rodgers was the winner of a two-way race for the final two years of a three-year term on the Harwood Unified Union School District (HUUSD) Board. The seat opened up last fall when Peter Langella resigned and the HUUSD Board appointed Linda Hazard to the seat. Both ran for it this week, with Rodgers prevailing 136-118.

A second contested school board seat in Warren went to Jonathan Clough, who ran against Kristin Parker for a three-year seat that Alycia Biondo had held. That vote was 140-106. Warren also elected Camilla Behn to the select board to fill the balance of a term that had been held by Mary Alberti. Warren voters faced a four-way race for two library commissioner seats. Alex Maclay and Linda Tyler won those seats with 186 and 142 votes, respectively, defeating challengers Jordy Baker with 109 votes and Roger Hussey with 27 votes.

HUUSD BUDGET

Voters approved the Harwood Unified Union School District budget of $38,600,862 by a vote of 1,062 to 852 with 15 blank. The HUUSD maintenance reserve article seeking $1 million passed by a vote of 1,332 to 569 with 27 blank votes and one spoiled vote.

Waitsfield voters elected Kellee Mazer to a two-year seat on the select board that had been held by Kari Dolan, who stepped down to work full time as a state representative. Mazer received 128 votes, defeating Ted Laskaris with 123 votes and J.B. Weir with 83 votes. Waitsfield voters elected Jeremy Tretiak to the HUUSD Board, replacing Rob Williams.

Fayston voters re-elected select board member Chuck Martel after a challenge from Michelle Gaboriau. Voters re-elected moderator Rick Rayfield, along with town clerk and treasurer Patti Lewis. Fayston voters elected Tim Jones to the HUUSD Board, replacing Jill Ellis.

In Duxbury voters re-elected moderator Dan Senning, town clerk Maureen Harvey and town treasurer David Specht. Voters also returned all select board members to their positions with some swapping of terms. Mari Pratt was elected to three-year term, Jerry McMahon to a two-year term, Bob Magee to a one-year term, Keith Garcia to the balance of a three-year term and Dan Schillhammer to the balance of a three-year term. Torrey Smith was re-elected to the HUUSD Board.

Voter turnout was low throughout The Valley. In Warren, 266 of the 1,501 registered voters cast ballots this week. In Waitsfield, 388 of 1,449 registered voters cast ballots. In Moretown, 298 of the town’s 1,460 registered voters cast ballots. In Fayston, 131 of the town’s 1,239 registered voters cast ballots. In Duxbury, 210 of 1,145 registered voters cast ballots.

See individual reports from each town inside, including discussions about whether to pave dirt roads, why Duxbury suddenly needs a new town garage, bringing Fayston’s Town Hall into ADA compliance, budget issues and more. Stories begin on Page 7.

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