March 3, 2016

Hinesburg Town Meeting

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Hinesburg (Mar.1) – Residents of the town of Hinesburg, Vermont traveled to Champlain Valley Union High School, Monday night, to attend their town meeting.

Town meetings have long been a tradition as a way for residents to be appreciated and to discuss the town budget and voice their concerns.

The main subject of Hinesburg’s meeting, was the increase in town budget of $153,000, which would cause an increase in taxes for homeowners, said Michael Bissonette, chairperson of the town selectboard.

One of the reasons behind Hinesburg’s budget increase is due to paying for the new 2015 snowplow, said Andrea Morgante, selectboard member.

She said that even though the mild winter has saved them fuel and salt costs, the plow and a new town garage for the snow plow and other highway maintenance vehicles, are part of the budgetary increase.

Besides the snowplow, John Trefry, selectboard member said that the new fire engine will be costing Hinesburg $98,000 per year for five years until they pay off the loan.

The new engine and some new proposed equipment will be saving the fire department time, money and manpower, said Trefry.

A highlight of the meeting was the update from Hinesburg’s representative, Bill Lippert, who addressed the budgetary issues at the state level.

“Needless to say, the budget is the main challenge for the legislation this year,” Lippert said.

Lippert addressed healthcare and assured the town that they are working hard to ensure health care coverage for Vermonters.

He, also, spoke briefly on the marijuana bill and said that he has heard strong arguments for those for and opposed to legalization.

“Frankly, I think it’s a challenging issue,” said Lippert about marijuana legalization.

He said that national and state policies on incarceration aren’t right and that the issue of marijuana legalization touches on both drug abuse and healthcare issues.

“I’ll be honest, I have some real reservations,” Lippert said.

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