Grafton to present wind project questions to Iberdrola; bids for town garage sale now open

By Gloria Dufield
©2015 Telegraph Publishing LLC

Economic and workforce development, the Grafton wind energy project and the sale of the old town garage property topped a very brief Grafton Select Board meeting on Monday, Aug. 3.

Alex Beck explains the number of jobs that are expected to be available in the region within five years. Photos by Gloria Dufield,

Alex Beck of Southern Vermont Economic Development Strategies explains the number of jobs that are expected to be available in the region within five years. Photos by Gloria Dufield,

Alex Beck, Young Professionals coordinator for the Southeastern Vermont Economic Development Strategies, gave a brief overview of his organization’s work in both Windham and Bennington counties.

He told the group that through programs like school liaisons and a new business accelerator program, it looks to develop both the workforce and the economy in both counties. A hiring survey identified 3,500 jobs that would be available in the next five years in Windham County in the manufacturing, green building and health care industries.

The Wind Information Subcommittee presented the board with five pages of questions relating to the wind project. The committee had organized the questions according to who it thought should answer the questions: the Select board and Planning Commission; wind project developer Iberdrola, or landowner Meadowsend Timberlands Ltd. – or both.

The majority of questions will be addressed to Iberdrola. Board chair Sam Battaglino asked Melissa Belcher of Meadowsend to forward the questions to the both companies and asked for a timely response. Battaglino said the answers would be made public and would also be available on the town web site. You can view the questions by clicking here.

Advertising for the sale of the town garage will run for four weeks, however there have already been requests for bid package information and those that are interested should contact Grafton town administrator Rachel Williams in the Select Board office at  grafton@vermontel.net or (802) 843-2552.

The next Select Board meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 17 at Grafton Elementary School.

A small turnout and a short meeting for the Aug. 3 Grafton Select Board.

A small turnout and a short meeting for the Aug. 3 Grafton Select Board.

In other news

Peter Jeziorski asked why tax collector Jan Atwood had not been giving reports at Select Board meetings on delinquent taxes. Chairman Battaglino said he would look into this for the next meeting.

  • Road foreman Danny Taylor said that paving on Route 121 will start the week of Aug. 17 and that roadside mowing is also scheduled to start soon.
  • The sand contract was awarded to Eastman Sand & Gravel. Eastman had provided sand last year and its price at $11.90 per cubic yard was one of the lowest bids this year.
  • Alan Sands asked why FACT-TV had not recorded the last two Select Board meetings. Battaglino relied that it was up to FACT-TV to send a videographer. In addition to taking minutes, Rachel Williams is also audio record each meeting.
  • Grafton will use its portion of a $32,000 High Meadows grant for plantings to stabilize banks and help with erosion,  review and update the town’s floodplain ordinance and a public education center that will provide an information stream table. The grant is divided among Grafton, Windham, Rockingham and Westminster.
  • FEMA buyouts are in varying stages of progress for three properties damaged by Tropical Storm Irene. Through a federal grant, these properties can be converted into recreational areas. Some of that work could begin in late fall.
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Filed Under: FeaturedGrafton Select Board AgendaLatest News

About the Author: Gloria Dufield is a Green Mountain Union High School and University of Vermont graduate. She has more than 15 years of experience working in higher education libraries. Her most recent writing includes marketing projects for a Vermont GIS company as well as articles for a weekly publication.

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