WINDSOR — Residents agreed to shake a little more money into the town’s salt budget at the annual Town Meeting, because the cost of road salt increased after the initial budget had been set.

Voters put an additional $20,000 into the town budget for road salt and $5,000 more for fuel for the public works department to help cover the escalated cost of both of those items. That upped the public works budget to $517,120.

And they agreed to put another $2,000 into General Assistance, upping it from the proposed $4,000 to $6,000 for the account used to help residents struggling to make ends meet.

“They thought $4,000 might not be enough, so they increased it to $6,000,” Theresa Haskell, town manager, said of that change.

She said those changes are not expected to alter the town budget’s impact on taxpayers, and the budget is still not expected to require a property tax increase.

About 40 residents met for roughly two hours June 16 for the annual Town Meeting, approving the proposed town budget of $1.96 million budget as proposed, other than those three additions.


Haskell said the cost of salt to spread on town roads to melt snow and ice went up by $20 a ton after the budget had been set, which she said could have left the town about nine loads of salt short of what it usually uses over a winter.

The additional funds will come from the town’s unassigned fund balance account, a fund made up of money unspent in previous years, so the changes are not expected to directly impact the property tax rate.

A proposal to purchase a new fire truck, an E-One/Freightliner tanker truck, to replace the department’s 1986 tanker truck, was approved by residents after some discussion.

The truck will be purchased with $54,000 from the town’s fund balance and $300,000 the town would borrow. At an estimated interest rate of 4% and paid back over six years, the town would pay $42,000 in interest in addition to the tanker truck’s purchase price.

The town budget is up due to increasing expenses, such as salaries and fuel, and plans to put money into reserve funds for future purchases and projects, according to officials.

Those projects include a townwide property revaluation that Haskell said could take place in 2024 or 2025. Voters agreed to put $70,000 into a reserve account this year to help pay for the revaluation.

Haskell warned residents at last year’s Town Meeting the town had not undertaken a property revaluation in about 15 years and would need to do one in the next few years to keep its property values in line with state standards. Last year, residents agreed to add $25,000 to the reserve fund for a revaluation, which brought it to about $65,000. Haskell estimated last year a revaluation could cost about $200,000.

Elections were held just ahead of the Town Meeting, at the polls June 14. Elected in a contested race for Regional School Unit 12 board of directors was Monique Crummett, with 126 votes, beating out Edward Pollard III (89 votes) and Erica Ontiveros (52). Elected in uncontested races were Andrew Ballantyne, who will sit on the Select Board; Aaron Ellis, Moira Teekema and Jason Ready, who will sit on the Budget Committee; and Joe Bradbury, who is an alternate to the Budget Committee.

As the meeting closed the Select Board presented Haskell with a plaque recognizing her “For 17 years of service to the Town as well as expertise during the (COVID-19) pandemic to keep staff and the Town safe while remaining fully open,” as the award states.

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