St. Albans Voters Reject New Garage, Agree To Keep Junk Ordinance

Nov 10, 2015

Voters in the town of St. Albans said no Tuesday to a plan to move the town garage and salt shed to another town-owned property. Voters also chose to support a new junk ordinance approved by the select board in August.

Article 1 asked the voters to approve $2.5 million to construct a new municipal works complex to another town –owned property. It failed 408 to 256. A second article asked voters for $268,000 to construct a new salt shed. It also failed, 359 to 336.

Town manager Carrie Johnson says the current building, along with the salt shed, is located on Lake Champlain and isn’t big enough to hold all of the town’s trucks.

"If we need to expand, which we do need to do fairly soon, we don't want to put more impervious surface right next to the lake," she said before the vote.

The building would have been paid for with anticipated local option tax revenue and would not have raised taxes.

Article 3 on the ballot asked voters to "rescind the junk ordinance approved Aug. 24, 2015." That item was included after a petitioner was able to collect the signatures of 5 percent of registered voters to put the ordinance up for a vote. Just 259 voted yes and 431 said no, so the ordinance will take effect.

Johnson says the ordinance sought to define "junk" and regulate the amount of debris that can be on a property. It includes exemptions for agriculture.