WILTON — With the approval of the majority of annual Town Meeting voters, selectmen plan to spend the upcoming year researching alternatives to the current recycling policy, with the hopes of lowering overall costs.

Alternative plans include having a private company pay for trash disposal, enforcing mandatory recycling or having a pay-per-bag policy for trash being disposed of.

Selectwoman Tiffany Maiuri said selectmen would be exploring any option they could think of and the possibilities were not limited to the alternatives presented at the meeting.

Selectman Tom Saviello, also a state senator, said in the Legislature, there was a bill considered that could have increased the cost of disposing trash by $14 a ton. He said that while the bill was defeated, residents should anticipate costs going up in the future, and he said selectmen wanted to proactively find ways to lower costs.

“The goal is to get more into the single-sort. So how do we do that?” he said.

Selectmen said the approval vote won’t mean the board will adopt any specific change, but now plan to explore options and present their findings for a vote at next year’s town meeting.

Along with the recycling option research, voters approved a nearly $3 million budget, up $40,300 from the budget proposed by the selectboard.

Voters approved an additional $30,000 be added on to the budget to purchase another cruiser for the police department. Police Chief Heidi Wilcox told the voters that while she only requested one cruiser in her proposed budget, the department was in need of two. Currently, she said, there is only one cruiser at the department that has under 100,000 miles and is safe for officers to use in pursuit.

Residents approved $10,000 for town office parking lot pavement. The budget committee recommended deferring on the parking lot maintenance.

Barry Hathaway, chairman of the finance committee, said the budget committee had a goal of keeping the budget under a certain limit and had cut the $10,000 to make it under that limit.

Voters also approved $252,683 from surplus to reduce the tax burden. Alternatively, the budget committee voted to use $155,000 to decrease the tax burden.

Outgoing selectman Terry Brann said the $100,000 difference was because he felt the taxpayers that are voting in the current budgets should reap the benefits of the current surplus.

“This is your money. This money isn’t people’s sitting in the future,” he said.

Kaitlin Schroeder — 861-9252

[email protected]

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