Manager’s Message - January, 2020
From the Desk of Milton Town Manager Don Turner, Jr.
Happy 2020! Looking back on the first month of the New Year, our team has accomplished a fair amount of work. And we’re looking forward to more projects and programs to come.
Committed to creating a vibrant downtown, we’re working on those projects that can be completed during this chilly and icy weather. We’ve commenced work on a gabion retaining wall as part of the Route 7 Gap sidewalk project. Crews worked diligently and completed this portion of the project last week.
We’ve also been busy preparing for the Cherry Street sidewalk work and Main Street sidewalk between Railroad Street and East Road. A new crosswalk is being discussed for the intersection of McMullen/Railroad/Kingsbury, too. These projects should help create a more walkable town. We are evaluating the safety of a number of intersections around Town at the request of residents.
Recreation’s Winter and Spring Program Guide is now available. It’s jam-packed with activities to keep residents active during these cold months. We had another exciting Winter Festival last weekend despite the severe winter storm on Friday. And despite all the snow and chill, our team has begun planning summer camps and this year’s Music in the Park series. We cannot wait to sit in the green grass and enjoy live music from talented local bands. The final draft of our Recreation Master Plan is now complete and available for review at www.miltonvt.gov.
Our Dog Park has been kept operational this winter by a group of dedicated volunteers. We can’t thank them enough. We’d like to remind owners that dog registration is due by April 1. Registration requires dogs to be up to date on rabies vaccinations. The town will supply a new tag for each registered canine.
If you’ve stopped by the town offices recently and are wondering why our team has been moving around it’s because we’re undergoing some much needed renovations. We’re restructuring to better utilize space, improve efficiency and enhance customer service. Further, the building was built in 1995, upgraded efficient lighting, upgraded restrooms and flooring were well overdue. The changes will include combining our planning, zoning and public works offices as well as relocating the finance and assessor’s offices. Our goal is to have most of the work completed prior to Town Meeting Day. The costs related to the renovations is being covered by savings from vacant positions.
We’re currently seeking two new team members to replace some outgoing staff. Michael Burris and Taylor Yeates are moving on from posts as the Planning & Development Review Director and Public Safety Director & Rescue Chief, respectively. We’re sad to see them go but excited to welcome newcomers to our offices.
Our police department has successfully recruited two new officers to fill vacancies. We welcomed new officers, Anthony Schiavo and Andrew Bates, to the force last month. Schiavo joins us from the Rutland County Sheriff’s Department. Andrew Bates, attended the Vermont Police Academy’s orientation and passed the physical fitness test. Bates began basic training on Monday 1/27/20.
The FY21 budget proposal increases spending by $385,700 or 4.8%. The month ahead will be a busy one in preparation for Town Meeting Day. We hope you take the time to look over the proposed budget and articles to ensure you’re informed at the polls on March 3. As always, we’re open to any questions from our residents and look forward to seeing you at the public forum Monday March 2.