WHITEFIELD — Whitefield voters will gather for the annual Town Meeting on Saturday to vote on the 51 warrant articles that include three new ordinances and other items such as a townwide property reevaluation and repairs to a culvert in town.

The proposed $3,796,028 town budget is an increase of 2% over last year’s $3,711,925 budget.

Saturday’s Town Meeting is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. at Whitefield Elementary School on 164 Grand Army Road to vote on warrant articles 3 through 51.

Before the Saturday gathering, the town will host an election on Friday from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Central Fire Station on 24 Townhouse Road to vote for the open positions within the town and on the moderator of Saturday’s event.

Of those positions, all candidates are running unopposed for the town positions — Kathleen Goetzman is running for Regional School Unit 12 board of directors, Glenn Angell is running for planning board and for the two open select board positions, Seth Bolduc and Keith Sanborn are on the ballot.

Goetzman and Bolduc are new candidates — Goetzman moved to Whitefield in 2020 from Columbia, South Carolina, and Bolduc moved to town seven years ago.


Town Administrator Yolanda Violette said most of the proposed increases are standard increases due to inflation and costs that go up each year. Violette said she didn’t know if the tax rate will increase until the Regional School Unit 12 and county budgets are finalized.

The tax rate is currently at $17.89 per $1,000 of property value.

“We haven’t really changed the budget or things within it; it’s just increased with other things increasing,” Violette said.

The largest proposed increase to the budget, article 14 — at 32% — is for administrative benefits and salaries. Violette said it’s part of the standard increases to salaries, insurance, social security and other related areas for the town employees. It went from $164,498 to $218,714.

Three new items on the warrant are articles 28, 29 and 30, which include a $50,000 first-installment payment for a townwide property reevaluation; $30,000 to replace the Joy’s Pond Culvert on Hunts Meadow Road; and $70,000 to pave the parking lot where the salt shed is, respectively.

Operation of the town government, article 15, increased by 2.8% from $110,976 to $114,032 due to the increased costs of office supplies, legal services, audit fees and other office-related expenses.


Article 17 covers the planning board and code enforcement officer. It increased by 28% to include $500 stipends for the planning board members and went from $11,330 to $14,556. The facility maintenance budget, article 18, decreased by 26%, from $53,011 to $38,851.

“Specific projects were completed so we removed some (money) from it this year,” Violette said. “It makes it look like it dropped a lot, but it’s because we removed the projects from last year.”

Operations of the Whitefield Fire Department, article 19, increased by 18% for higher stipends, specifically for the fire chief. The article went from $97,563 last year to a proposed $114,887 this year.

The three ordinances on medical marijuana cultivation facilities, building codes relating to the facilities and an ordnance on solar panels, have to be voted and approved by Whitefield voters in order to go into effect.

The ordinances around the medical marijuana cultivation facilities and the updated building codes are closely related and prepare for the possibility of bringing a marijuana facility to Whitefield, Violette said. The ordinance around the facilities limits the town to having just one such facility and it does not impact residents having the ability to grow up to six plants on their land. Specifically, the building codes were updated and amended to strengthen sections about noise, odor and change in use, Violette said.

And the last ordinance will allow town officials 180 days to draft and research an ordinance around solar energy. If the town is successful in creating an ordinance, it would go on agenda for a public hearing in October, to be voted on at the next election in November. If it’s not accomplished, the select board will have another 180 days to do so to get it on the March ballot for next year’s Town Meeting.

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