The roof is collapsing on Brattleboro's reluctance to make improvements to the town's fire and police facilities.
The town has been trying to advance a multi-million dollar construction project for more than 15 years, and during that time important maintenance work has been put off.
During this past weekend's heavy rain, the roof drains on the fire station backed up and water streamed into the building, damaging the ceilings on a few rooms.
Brattleboro Fire Chief Mike Bucossi says it was only a matter of time before the situation caught up with the town.
"There's things that have been held together with duct tape and bubble gum, with the intentions of trying not to throw good money away, knowing that this project was coming down the road," he says.
The town is trying to get the most recent project started, which may include moving the police station down to the Brattleboro Reformer building.
Bucossi says he hopes the town is finally ready to commit to the project.
"I'm frustrated now," he says. "I understand things take time to move forward. But there's no excuses to delay these projects anymore. None."
The selectboard hopes to put the project before town meeting representatives in March.