By Lani Duke
Castleton approves budget
Castleton’s Select Board ventured into new fiscal waters when it approved its very first capital budget plan on Dec. 28. Voters will have the opportunity to vote their opinion on the plan in March. In the words of Town Manager Mark Shea, “If you pay a little as you go, you don’t have to pay that interest rate.” If approved, the budget would set aside $30,000 toward a new town office, with an additional $1,000 added to the fire department’s part of the budget. The board approved the budget plan 4-1; Selectman James Leamy dissented.
The selectmen also voted to offer for sale 18.28 acres of town property on Sand Hill Road, with the intent that the purchaser use it for economic development, and that both the Select Board and the town approve the sale. The land had been given to the town by the university in 2009; its appraisal value is $69,500. It is not adjacent to the campus and the school had no plans to develop it.The deed on the property restricts its use to economic development; if it were to be used for something else, the university could repossess the land. Like the capital budget plan, the property sale would also be used to generate assets for the town, eventually to be used for a new town office.
Volunteers needed on local boards
CASTLETON—Town government is looking for a few good men and women who are willing to serve their community by filling vacant seats on boards and commissions. Currently, the town needs applicants for its Development Review Board, Planning Commission, and Recreation Commission. To apply to any of these, mail or hand deliver a letter of intent to 1655 Main Street, P.O. Box 727, Castleton, VT 05735.
Crime spree hits Poultney
POULTNEY—Someone has been breaking into Poultney businesses on Main and East Main, York, and Furnace streets, as well as rifling through unlocked vehicles. Missing items include small electronic items, alcohol, cigarettes, tools, and cash.
Burglars broke into the Trolley Stop restaurant on October 31, taking the cash register, owner Andrew DelPezzo said. Burglars cut a bar off a metal door to get into Mark Teetor’s Riverside Motors and cleaned out its cash box Nov. 1. Although the cash was gone, his tools were untouched.
Between sunset Nov. 3 and sunrise the next morning, someone broke into the East Poultney General Store and Riverside Motors. Store owner Carol Stierle said the burglars came in through the kitchen window while she was upstairs. Missing were almost all the cigarettes, small bottles of liquor, and petty cash; the intruders also tried to break into the ATM. At Riverside Motors, the thieves grabbed “a small amount of cash.” Someone also broke into Wescott’s Garage that night but apparently took nothing.
During the morning of Nov. 13, someone entered the front door of Daniel McMurry’s garage on York Street, walking off with a red strongbox containing job-related work orders. McMurry had left the garage unattended and the door unlocked.
Presumably, the same individuals came back to the Trolley Stop, looking for more during the night of Nov. 13. Would-be thieves tried to pry open the back door but failed to gain entrance.
The Rutland County Sheriff and the Vermont State Police have been working together to trace down leads but have not announced any arrests. Individuals with information that would help the investigators may call the Vermont State Police at (802) 773-9101, anonymously submit a tip text “CRIMES” to keyword “VTIPS,” or use the vtips.info.
Benson Village School students participated in a “Clash of Coins” as 2015 ended. Students raised more than $370 for Ronald McDonald House. Students also donated food items.
Castleton Elementary students are collecting empty shoe boxes and new items to fill them, such as toys, books, school supplies, socks, ball caps, toy jewelry, sun glasses, and more. Plans are to get the filled boxes into the hands of underprivileged children around Valentine’s Day 2016.
Castleton Elementary art students are learning to use a 3-D printer. Eighth graders have been asked to research an item found in a Washington, D.C. museum or gallery, and replicate it as a 3-D print. The replications go on display in the school library, accompanied by QR codes that give the viewing students information about the original items.