Public Post

The first day students returned to Montpelier's Union Elementary School after their spring vacation on Monday also turned out to be the first day construction crews began work on School Street on the city's new district heating project. City officials knew this would cause some traffic headaches, especially during school drop-off and pick-up times. But they say the situation couldn't be helped if the city's district heat project is to be kept on track. A new construction schedule was...

VPR’s Public Post pores through municipal public documents, posted online, to bring you local news from Vermont’s cities, towns, villages and gores. When we find something interesting or otherwise newsworthy, we send out a tweet. We follow up on the bigger stories at the VPR News Blog. Here are some tweet highlights from the past week: Charlotte #VT lowering speed limit from 50 to 45 on Hinesburg Rd., from Spear St. to Hinesburg town line. #BTV #PublicPost #OpenGov #VPRNews — Amy Kolb Noyes (...

Around 90 people came out to the Folsom School and Community Center last week for a special meeting of the South Hero Select Board. They were there to discuss the idea of enacting interim zoning measures to limit the size of commercial, industrial, and professional service buildings in town. The discussion among the public, planning commissioners, selectmen, and members of the zoning board of adjustment lasted well over an hour. The meeting minutes do not reflect a specific building project...

VTrans

Last week the Vermont Transportation Board officially expanded the Scenic Route 100 Byway to encompass 138 miles through 20 towns in central and southern Vermont. To be clear, Route 100 hasn't changed, just the "byway" designation has been expanded to new portions of the road. So, why are so many towns and businesses along the route so excited? It's all about marketing. The push to expand the byway came from regional planning commissions and chambers of commerce along the route, representing...

Voters in Vergennes are being asked to consider a scaled-down version of the new police department that was defeated on Town Meeting Day. Last month city voters defeated the $1.85 million project by just ten votes. The final tally , which was confirmed by a recount, was 292 yes to 302 no. The city went back to the drawing board and scaled back some aspects of the project, based upon voter feedback. In total, 1,400 square feet were trimmed from the building footprint, and the reduced footprint...

It's a story that's repeated across the Vermont landscape: historic barns - once treasures in their communities - falling into a near-terminal state of disrepair. Fortunately, thanks to motivated citizens who step forward to help, the story sometimes has a happy ending. That's the storyline a community group in Williston is hoping to write for the Brennan Barn. According to Williston's website, the Brennan Barn is one of the oldest barns in western Vermont. The English style farming barn was...

Dollar General Continues Vermont Expansion

Apr 23, 2013

Based on the number of stores it operates, Dollar General is the largest discount retailer in the country. According to the company’s 2012 annual report, hundreds of new stores were opened last year. It's also clear that Dollar General has found a home in Vermont. There are 17 Dollar General Stores in Vermont, compared with six in New Hampshire, three in Massachusetts, and four in Connecticut. The company lists no outlets in Maine. This week the Georgia planning commission is expected to...

VPR’s Public Post pores through municipal public documents, posted online, to bring you local news from Vermont’s cities, towns, villages and gores. When we find something interesting or otherwise newsworthy, we send out a tweet. We follow up on the bigger stories at the VPR News Blog. Here are some tweet highlights from the past week: @ jaypeakresort building plans for 2014: medical center, recreational center & more residential units. #NEK #PublicPost #VPRNews — Amy Kolb Noyes (...

Pipeline Info Campaign Is Under Way In Cornwall

Apr 18, 2013

The exact route for the proposed second phase of Vermont Gas's natural gas pipeline in Addison County has yet to be determined. Vermont Gas announced five possible Phase II routes earlier this month, three of which would take the pipeline through the town of Cornwall on its way to the International Paper mill in Ticonderoga, N.Y. However, Cornwall isn't waiting for a final determination to inform residents about risks that could come with the Addison Natural Gas Project. The town's spring...

Montpelier Sewer Problems Plague Winooski River

Apr 18, 2013

Water and sewer customers in Montpelier will be receiving some advice with their April bill on what is and is not acceptable to flush down the toilet. This comes after a wad of industrial cleaning rags was found to be the cause of a backup in the system on March 11. The result was an estimated 360,000 gallons of effluent discharged into the Winooski River. In his weekly report on Friday, City Manager William Fraser wrote: The cause of the overflow was a plug in the collection system in front...

Nature-Based Learning Coming To Craftsbury

Apr 18, 2013

Two educators in Craftsbury are working to bring nature-based learning to town for children as young as 3 years old. This month Anna Crytzer is launching a new outdoor program, currently called “Forest School,” modeled after the Earthwalk program in Plainfield. Based out of Sterling College, Forest School will offer programing for school-aged children, including homeschoolers and public school students. Meanwhile Anne Hanson would like to start a similar program for preschool children, in...

VPR’s Public Post pores through municipal public documents, posted online, to bring you local news from Vermont’s cities, towns, villages and gores. When we find something interesting or otherwise newsworthy, we send out a tweet. We follow up on the bigger stories at the VPR News Blog. Here are some tweet highlights from the past week: May 14 Plymouth #VT will vote on reinstating $68K in budget for Windsor County #Sheriff services. #PublicPost #tmdvt #VPRNews #SoVT #police — Amy Kolb Noyes (...

By keeping the birds in mind when planning haying, brush-hogging, and property development, landowners can help protect Vermont’s grassland bird species that are suffering from dwindling habitat. That’s the message the Charlotte Conservation Commission is trying to spread via a brochure entitled Grassland Birds in Charlotte: Our Role in Their Future. Unlike many other Vermont towns, much of Charlotte’s landscape remains unforested and undeveloped today. This gives us a special opportunity to...

Waitsfield has a plan to address issues with failing septic systems in town, but first it needs to dabble in a little archaeology. The first phase of the town’s “decentralized wastewater project” calls for a 1,500-gallons-per-day dispersal field in a lot next to the Waitsfield United Church of Christ, and about 60 meters off the banks of the Mad River. However, authorities have determined that there’s a good chance that a field near the river could have some important archaeological artifacts...

Voters in Ludlow are being called to the polls for a special town meeting vote Tuesday, May 7, to consider two spending items. The first question on the ballot seeks a $180,000 bond to finance the balance of a new fire truck. ARTICLE I Shall the voters of the Town of Ludlow authorize the Select Board to finance the purchase [of] a new Fire Truck (replacement for two existing trucks) with a Municipal Bond in the amount of $180,000.00 for a term not to exceed 15 years? The cost of the said...

VPR's Public Post pores through municipal public documents, posted online, to bring you local news from Vermont's cities, towns, villages and gores. Here are some tweet highlights from the past week: Halifax #VT Select Board is asking @ usps for a refund on town reports never delivered. #SoVT #PublicPost #VPRNews #wheresmymail — Amy Kolb Noyes (@AmyKolbNoyes) April 1, 2013 Peeper crossing guard training Thursday at the North Branch Nature Center! northbranchnaturecenter.org/AMP.htm ...

The Black River Academy Museum in Ludlow, has something of a mystery on its hands. When the museum opens for the summer on June 6, it will be exhibiting a new display of World War I artifacts, donated by several area residents. Among the items to be displayed is the liquid storage container pictured above. But neither the donors nor museum personnel know how to classify the container. An article in the Mt. Holly Chit Chat newsletter states: The mystery liquid container has the words, on one...

Now What? That's a fairly common question at select board and school board meetings this time of year, especially in down economy years. What happens after municipal officials invest time, energy and money planning a project that the voters turn down at town meeting? Should they throw in the towel? Scale down the project and ask again? What about trying to do a better job explaining why the project is needed? Case in point is Shaftsbury's attempt to build a new town garage this year. On Town...

Planners in St. Albans know downtown parking is going to be a hassle this spring and summer. The city's downtown revitalization project will certainly make negotiating Main Street worse, before it makes it better. So to keep shoppers and other downtown business clientele coming, the city is offering up free off-street parking. The town's website states: Some on-street parking will be temporarily blocked by the project. The city is allowing for free 2 1/2 hour parking in the City Hall lot off...

April showers bring out more than May flowers. They also signal the return of frog and salamander populations, including Vermont's iconic spring peepers. But increased development can mean more hazardous migrations for native amphibians. Montpelier's North Branch Nature Center is training volunteers to help ensure frogs and salamanders that made it through our Vermont winter will survive the trip to their spring habitats.The North Branch Nature Center piloted its Amphibian Monitoring Program...

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