(from Annual Report ending December 31, 2016)
Activities in Waterford progressed smoothly during the year with no major disruptions. We continued to work on the Town’s on-going projects and made excellent progress on all fronts. The Town continues to function well and to provide a high level of services to the residents.
The Planning Commission completed updating and revising the Waterford Town Plan during the year with the assistance of a consultant from the Northeast Vermont Development Association. We received a Municipal Planning Grant in 2015 to fund the work by the consultant, and after a public meeting to review the Town Plan it was adopted by the Selectboard. During the year the Town applied for a second grant for 2017 to engage the contractor to work with the Planning Commission on implementing recommendations made in the Plan.
We also engaged a consultant to conduct a study and develop a Local Hazard Mitigation Plan for the Town. This project was also funded by a grant from the State. The final Plan was adopted by the Town, submitted to the State for review, and has been submitted to FEMA for review and approval. Having an approved Hazard Mitigation Plan increases the funding provided by FEMA in the event of a disaster.
We continued to work on the tax appeal filed by TransCanada for Moore Dam. During the year all of the other court cases related to other dams were settled, and we have continued negotiations with TransCanada. The State and Town continue to believe the value of the dam is higher than the amount proposed by TransCanada, and the Court has scheduled a mediation session for January 4, 2017. This mediation should conclude the tax appeal.
The Selectboard worked with the Road Foreman and the Waterford Fire Department to make sure they have the proper equipment. During the year we replaced the Highway Departments grader with a updated model; we received a high trade-in value for the current grader and were able to use government pricing to further reduce the cost. We assisted the Fire Department with the replacement of their Rescue Truck; the current truck was at the end of its useful life and did not have the capacity to meet current needs.
Other activities of the Selectboard include the addition of a fourth employee in the Highway Department, purchasing two “Welcome to Waterford” signs and installing them at both ends of Route 18, updating the restrooms in the Town Office/Town Library building, and ordering new signs for most of the cemeteries in Town.
We would like to thank all of the elected officials and appointed board members for their service during the year. These residents contribute their time and effort and assist the Selectboard in making timely and accurate decisions. We have special thanks to Lisle and his crew for their excellent maintenance of the Town roads, and for Joanne and Jessy for their work in the Town Office.
Board of Selectmen: Brent Beck, Gary Allard, Fred Saar