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Town Meeting preview: Royalton voters opt out of floor meeting, tackle budget

Published: 2/9/2021 9:49:07 PM
Modified: 2/9/2021 9:49:06 PM

Hot topic: Though Royalton voters decided to keep their floor meeting at Town Meeting last year, they will be forgoing one this year in light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. “We would really like folks to know that this is a pandemic necessity, not a permanent change,” said Victoria Paquin, the town administrator, in an email. “We are looking forward to a traditional Town Meeting next year.”

Budget: Expenses in the general fund decreased by $12,500 to $1.35 million in the proposed budget compared with the one voters approved last year. To support that, $1.09 million would be raised by taxes, a decrease of $18,100. In the meantime, expenses in the highway fund are proposed to go up $5,900 to $1.04 million of which $837,000 is to be raised by taxes, for an increase of $13,300 over last year.

When taken together, the slight decrease in the amount to be raised by taxes for the general fund balances out the slight increase for the highway fund, Paquin said. Town officials don’t expect a change to the tax rate unless the grand list changes value, she said.

Noteworthy articles: Voters also will be asked to establish a conservation reserve fund to be used for the stewardship of lands with ecological, cultural or recreational significance to the town.

Contested races: There are no contested races, according to Town Clerk Karmen Bascom.

When and where: An informational meeting is planned for 6:30 p.m. Feb. 23 via Zoom. Town Meeting voting by Australian ballot will be open from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m March 2 in the White River Valley School Auditorium in South Royalton.

— Nora Doyle-Burr

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