Ex-Derry board member Aragi dies; town projects move forward

By Bruce Frauman
©2017 Telegraph Publishing LLC

In the midst of a thunderstorm on Sept. 5, Londonderry Select Board chair Paul Gordon  announced the death over the weekend of former Select Board member Cathy Aragi, who served on the board from 2014 to 2016.

The late Cathy Aragi in this Telegraph file photo.

“Cathy served the board in a great capacity and worked very hard for our community. She fought well and hard and we express our condolences to her family and friends and we will miss her greatly,” Gordon told the meeting. Here is Aragi’s obituary in the Manchester Journal.

According to the Danbury News Times, a memorial service will be held at the S. Londonderry First Baptist Church at 11 a.m., Saturday Sept. 30 followed by refreshments at the Londonderry Rescue Squad, where she was an active member for 15 years.

All-Seasons to build salt shed

At its Aug. 21 meeting, the board had awarded building the new salt and sand shed to All-Seasons Construction of Springfield, but Gordon said this past Tuesday that there was some confusion on All-Seasons’ part as to the terms of the agreement.

After a lengthy discussion with All-Seasons, Gordon said “we have come up with what we believe to be a solution,” with the paving portion awarded to O’Brien Paving at a cost of $13,500. All-Seasons will now do the work except asphalt and electrical at a cost of $167,734. Barton Electric will do the electric work for $4,800. The total cost will still be below the $200,000 allotted to the project.

The board agreed to a approve the contract with All-Seasons pending a review by the town attorney.

Town, zoning admin posts combined; Town Plan hearing set

Planning Commission member Dick Dale says the Town Plan is now in the Select Board’s hands. All photos by Bruce Frauman unless otherwise noted.

Following the announcement that Stephanie Thompson was resigning as town administrator to take a job as a public health analyst, Gordon said the idea of combining her post with the vacant zoning administrator job has yielded most of the eight candidates. He added that the search committee will begin evaluating the candidates, although there is no closing date to the application. Gordon also thanked Thompson for her two years of service.

The board will hold a public hearing on the proposed Town Plan at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 2, with the Select Board meeting to follow immediately. The Town Plan is available on-line at the town’s website and hard copies are available from the town clerk. Planning Commission member Dick Dale told the board that any changes in the plan are now up to the Select Board. Board members are to bring changes to Gordon by Sept. 11. 

In other action

  • Treasurer Tina Labeau said the town clerk’s office started selling the new Transfer Station punch cards and “a bunch of people came in to buy them.”  After Oct. 2, punch cards will be required to dispose of solid waste.
  • Board member and Road Commissioner Jim Ameden said the town has taken delivery of a new plow truck, which is now in service. Ameden said due to equipment failures, the town has agreed to rent roadside mowing equipment and is on a waiting list. He added that he expects the equipment to be available the week of Sept. 11.
  • Demolition has begun on the Genser property.

    Gordon said the board is not ready to finalize wording for signs on use of the Prouty property. Board member George Mora referred to a suggestion from fellow member Bob Forbes that “all town property be firearms free.” Ameden said he was “not interested in making town-wide policy,” at this time, but confining it only to the Prouty property.Gordon and Mora will work on the wording of the signs to be posted at the entrance of the land. that will prohibit firearms use and limit night usage. Gordon said, “We should get the signs for the Prouty land and look at the other ones down the road.”

  • All the asbestos has been removed from the former Genser property, with demolition beginning this week. Once the building is down and removed, Gordon said, “We’ll put something on the Community Forum page and assemble en mass for a celebration.”
  • Finally, all permits for the Town Office planning project have been received, the last being wetland permits. Work is expected to begin next spring. Dale asked that the generator pad and ditch move forward as quickly as possible.
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  1. Kelly Capen says:

    I Would like to thank Bruce for his reports !