Chester sets Special Town Meeting over loader purchase for June 10

By Shawn Cunningham
© 2019 Telegraph Publishing LLC

On Friday May 10, the Chester Select Board approved a warning for a Special Town Meeting to vote on the purchase of a new loader for the town garage.

According to board chair Arne Jonynas, the funding for the loader was included in the town’s capital plan but was inadvertently omitted from the warning for the March 5 Town Meeting Day vote.

The Special Town Meeting will be held at 6 p.m. on Monday, June 10, 2019 at Chester Town Hall, 556 Elms St., and voting will be from the floor.

According to Town Manager David Pisha, the current loader has a number of problems and just taking care of the worst problems would cost $18,000 to $20,000 with no guarantee that it would hold up.

The town has a second loader, but it is expected to be used for the six to eight week period of gravel extraction on the land purchased for the backup water tank. The board decided on the special meeting after looking at several other options, including working with a single loader and renting a loader for the gravel extraction — if the Act 250 permit is completed and approved by this summer.

On May 1, Public Works Director Graham Kennedy told the board that the department has been using two loaders as long as he has worked there and probably longer.

The cost of the loader is $165,000 to be paid over four years.

A second Special Town Meeting will likely occur in September or October, so that town voters could decide on a whether to go ahead with plans for new emergency services building.

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