Manager's Message July 2019
From the Desk of Milton Town Manager Don Turner, Jr.
The dog days of summer have arrived and we’re busy around town.
Over the last 10 weeks I’ve enjoyed walks with residents as part of, “Walking with the Town Manager.” It’s been a great way to engage with locals and to answer questions about town happenings. I hope you’ll join us for a walk soon. We meet each Tuesday at 6:00 p.m. The location changes but is posted on the Milton Recreation Facebook Events page.
We all know that Vermont summers don’t last. That’s why our recreation and parks department is making the most of the season. Recreation Day Camp at the Fieldhouse began in June and has been popular. Bombardier Park has hosted the weekly Tuesday night concert series, the July 4th festivities and a number of other very popular events this summer. It’s great to see these types of events where we can show off our facilities and boost our local economy.
Recreation Master Plan efforts continued July 10 with two focus groups. The groups provided feedback and ideas for the future of our recreation system. We were pleased to receive their input and hope you’ll weigh in via our survey: www.miltonvt.gov/recreation
There’s no shortage of activity in our library. Hunger Free Vermont and the Milton Town School District (MTSD) have partnered to provide free lunches there for kids 18 and under. The program will run through Aug. 16, with meals served between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Adult Summer Reading Bingo is in full swing. Through Aug. 31 Miltonians can download a bingo card on the library’s website or stop by to pick one up, directions are available there too. This month’s prize is a gift certificate for two for a gourmet meal on the Champlain Valley Dinner Train.
The buildings and grounds staff is busy keeping our town municipal properties looking good. We hired three part-time staff members this summer. Maizy Mooney, Bailey Reilly, and Carson Desranleau are all Milton students and have done an exceptional job this summer. We’ve enjoyed having them aboard and we truly appreciate their efforts.
This summer we also welcome Ashley Toof Public Works Engineer and Shannon Maynard Finance Clerk to the team. Sadly, we bid farewell to Jean Hudson and Will Sanderson. Hudson served on the custodial staff and Sanderson as a wastewater operator. We’re thankful for their service to the community.
Our Town Clerk’s Office is adopting a new state issued Vital Records Issuance Management System. The system requires residents to provide identification and fill out an application for certified copies of personal records. Thanks for your patience as we learn the ropes. Also new to the office are updated rates for land records. As of July, document recording costs $15 per page, property transfer tax returns $15 per document, and survey plat recording fees $25/sheet. These fees are state mandated by the legislature and a significant portion goes into reappraisals. A town wide reappraisal is in the works. We’ll likely go out for bid on the reappraisal within the next 45 days. Our Common Level of Appraisal (CLA) is about 95 percent. When the CLA drops below 100 percent the difference must be made up in a higher tax rate. The reappraisal should even out the disparity.
As the weather warmed up, calls cooled down for Rescue. The summer months are often the slowest for ambulance services. But despite diminished calls, Rescue had no shortage of happenings. In July, we promoted Shannon Roberto and Joe Gannon from per diem to full-time EMS workers with Milton Rescue; making them Milton’s first full-time EMS staff. Their positions reduce our reliance on per-diem advanced EMTs which should help our budget.
Last week our new fire engine arrived. It’s the last of six vehicles and machinery purchased with a $1 million bond voters approved in March 2018. The staff and I are very appreciative of taxpayers supporting the equipment needed to operate our town.
In June, Milton Police Department participated in the Vermont Law Enforcement Torch Run to support the Special Olympics. Some of our officers have participated in this great event for several years. We’re proud of the force for participating and representing our town. The police department “Creemee with a Cop” program has been a success. Our officers love rewarding kids with a free creemee for their safe choices and good deeds.
The Highway crew is busy at work filling potholes, ditching, grading and mowing around town. This September F.W. Whitcomb will pave sections of Everest, Lake, North, Cooper, East and Bear Trap Roads.
The Lake Road water main replacement project continues but should be completed by the end of October. Work on the East Road Bridges will begin in the next few weeks. We’re excited to say the Southern Gateway project is set to begin soon too.
Get out and enjoy Milton while the weather is still nice. I look forward to seeing you around town soon.
Please feel free to contact me at the Town Manager’s office 893-6655 or email me and I will be happy to assist you.