Manager’s Message - August 2020
As I write our town’s August recap, there’s a slight chill in the air and the crickets are chirping summer’s swan song. It’s been an unusual summer but an enjoyable all the same. I know I’ll miss the long sunny days and green grassy fields. But there is plenty to look forward to this fall as we wrap up some last road repairs and look to planning our town’s next projects.
Our town clerk and treasurer’s office has been busy as ever. Though most of our public interactions remain over the phone or through the municipal building’s drop box we’re happy to hear from our community.
August was a rush with the state primary election. We had 2,671 people vote in the election far surpassing our average of 1,139 for a town or school budget vote. Thanks for getting out the vote. We are aware the ballots are too large for the municipal building’s drop box and are working on alternatives for the November election. We look forward to seeing you cast your ballot soon.
Our town clerk and Treasurers office remains open by appointment due to COVID-19. If you are looking to pay your utility or tax bill? Please consider these options: 1. Pay online at miltonvt.gov following the “Online Payments” option (you will need your account number) 2. Place your payment in an envelope in our secure drop box outside the main doors to the Municipal building at any time 3. Mail a check to us at Town of Milton PO Box 18 4. Call the Clerk & Treasurer’s Office to set up an appointment to pay in person. Appointments are currently being offered between 8am and 12 noon, Monday through Thursday. If you have any questions regarding payments, amount due, or deadlines or have made a payment recently and your payment has not cleared your bank account within 10 days of sending to us, please call our office at 893-6655 Ext. 1 and we can help.
Our town clerk and treasurer’s office was also busy last month mailing out delinquent water bill notices. The notices explained that we are not shutting off the water this cycle, but the delinquency remains a liability and a lien against the effected properties. We know this is a tough time for everyone and are happy to provide additional information to any community member with questions about this process. We encourage residents to contact John Gifford to set up a payment plan or check out the Vermont Department of Public Service for information on programs to help establish, maintain or restore utility service.
Summer’s end was further solidified as our camps wrapped up last month. We are so grateful for our hardworking counselors who made things safe and fun during this abnormal time. A big thanks to our campers for respecting new health and safety rules, as well. Our fall and Winter Recreation Guide is now out. We have print copies in the municipal building as well as several spots around town. The guide is also available online. This season’s guide contains a nice mix of in-person and online programming. Registration is now open, and we hope to see you join in on the fun. This week marks our last with Recreation and Parks Director Kym Duchesneau. Kym has been a loyal team member for 13 years and committed herself to bettering our town’s recreational opportunities. We will be said to say goodbye on Friday, Sept. 4.
We are excited to have a Jenna Tucker on as our new Recreation and Parks Director. Jenna has been able to spend a week with Kym prior to her leaving and is eager to jump into this new role. We look forward to seeing what Jenna and Ben have in store for future programs and events.
Our library has welcomed more community members in this month as we transition into visits by appointment. It’s been nice to have library patrons perusing the shelves again. We continue curbside pickup for those who prefer not to enter the library at this time.
A big thanks to our librarians for staying connected with the community through this tough time. It seems like our team pivoted overnight to create online resources like “Teen Space” videos, reading guides and craft ideas for kids of all ages. We were proud to have our very own Library Director, Susan Larson, featured on WCAX last month as part of a story about public libraries taking on “added importance” during the pandemic. We couldn’t agree more how important it is now more than ever to have libraries for education and engagement.
Our library team continues to plan and provide new resources like anti-racism programming and, soon, a new homeschooling resource page on our website.
As our young community members head back to school in new ways, our police department wants to remind residents how some things never change. Buses will soon be driving kids to and from school and it is imperative that motorists drive carefully when near them. You may notice school buses transporting children on days and times that are outside the norm due to COVID-19 and new scheduling. Please be patient and remember it is illegal to pass a bus when its red lights our flashing.
The Public Safety Department also welcomes community members in need to stop by the municipal building for cloth face masks that were donated by the state. There is a table set up outside the building for mask pick up, community members can also email our Public Safety Director, Michaela Foody, for more information.
We hope you’re getting outside and making the most of these last long, warm summer days. Thanks to all of our community members for taking the necessary precautions to keep each other safe during COVID-19. We look forward to better days when it is safe to gather and masks aren’t needed. But in the meantime, I look forward to seeing you around town, and greeting you with a socially-distant hello!