It was a tremendously busy month in the Town Offices as we prepared for Town Meeting Day. Thank you to all the registered voters who came out to cast their ballots on March 1, as well as those who voted early and absentee. View the official election results (PDF).
Thank you for voting – and for your support of the Town’s initiatives
It is an encouraging sign when the community supports a proposed budget, as it indicates that residents see the value of the services it will provide. With the approval of our FY23 budget, we will be able to:
- heavily invest in paving our roads;
- hire a lieutenant for our police department and a chief for our rescue department; and
- support improvements to the working environment of our town government.
Our team was likewise thrilled to see a resounding “yes” vote on Article IV. Its passage will enable us to build a new public works facility (highway garage) on land near Bombardier Park. The new building will better serve our team and our community by affording more workspace, and storage for town vehicles and machinery, all in a central location.
From the Town Clerk and Treasurer's Office
Ahead of Town Meeting day, our Town Clerk’s Office was greatly occupied with preparations from truing up the registered voter list, to folding, stuffing and mailing out more than 177 absentee ballots.
Although Town Meeting Day is now over, our team is already looking ahead to future elections. Town Clerk Kristin Beers recently testified to the House Government Operations Committee to express the Town’s interest in retaining two voting districts. The state’s current redistricting proposal would split Milton into three voting districts. We will keep you updated on developments.
In addition to election preparations, regular Town Clerk and Treasurer’s office duties continue. Mid-February was the suggested payment date for taxes, and we have been processing payments ever since. As of February 17, we collected about 53% of taxes billed in August 2021, on track with payments at the same time last year.
Water payments were due in February. Our team mailed out more than 2,500 bills ahead of the deadline and only 150 residents received water shut-off notices. Phase one shut offs will occur starting March 7, and phase two shut offs will take place in mid-March. Based on historic numbers, we anticipate less than 10 shut offs will occur.
From the Library
The Milton Public Library remains open for curbside pickup Monday – Wednesday. Doors are open for patrons to browse the collection in-person Thursday – Saturday. The library now has copies of federal tax forms available at the back entrance on curbside pickup days and inside the front door during open hours.
From the Public Works Department
Our highway department has, quite literally, had a heavy lift the past couple of weeks. With deep snows came the need for frequent and sustained plowing efforts. Our team has also worked to thaw frozen culverts, fix damaged mailboxes, clear sidewalks and shovel hydrants out of the snowpack. While it will be a few months yet before temperatures allow for extensive road work, we’ll be putting the spring paving job out to bid soon.
The town water and wastewater plants are running well. With the recent installation of our dissolved oxygen probe we have resumed testing for BOD (Biological Oxygen Demand) in-house.
From the Recreation Department
The parks were abuzz last month with the Winter Festival. Our Recreation Department partnered with The Venue to host a Grand Opening event on Feb. 11, with about 80 people in attendance. Sledding contests, ice skating, snowshoe hikes and chili takeout filled the duration of the weekend. Check out this Facebook post for a recap with photos from the event.
Recreation’s Ice Out tickets will remain on sale through March 15. Entrants can place their bet on when the ice will thaw on Arrowhead Lake. The person with the closest guess to the official date & time will receive 50% of the total proceeds from ticket sales. The remaining proceeds will be used to support our town’s annual July 4th celebration. Tickets are available on the Recreation department website or at a partner location, including: Raj’s Liquor and Beverage, Frey’s Deli, Arrowhead Lodge, The Grill and Uncle Ronnie’s.
Summer Camp registration should open around mid-month. Interested community members can check for updates on the Recreation page of the Milton website or the Milton Recreation Facebook page.
From Planning and Zoning
Our planning and zoning team spent February preparing for projects to come. Planning Director Cymone Haiju attended an I-89 Advisory Committee meeting where the group approved recommended policies and investments regarding lowering greenhouse gas emissions and vehicle miles traveled. The group also learned that the Chittenden County Regional Planning Commission will soon release a technical assessment report regarding a new Milton exit off I-89.
From the Town Manager's Office
Of late, my efforts have centered on providing the community with information on ballot items ahead of Town Meeting Day. Our team created a Town Meeting Day postcard that was mailed to all residents, and shared information on social media ahead of the election. We also put together informational videos and literature that were made available on our website and in the Town Offices.
Again, I am grateful to everyone who researched the measures and came out to vote during this election. The resounding “yes” votes on our budget and highway garage articles show a strong commitment to the development of our town. We look forward to getting to work on FY23 projects soon.
Don Turner, Jr.
Milton Town Manager
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