New highway truck may finally be ready for town
by Margo Avakian
Nov 12, 2013 | 3026 views | 0 0 comments | 92 92 recommendations | email to a friend | print
HALIFAX- “If all goes to plan,” highway supervisor Bradley Rafus told the selectboard at Tuesday’s meeting, “we should have the new truck by the middle of next week.”

The truck is now being painted, and it will be delivered to Concord, NH, where crew members can pick it up. It has taken a lot longer than the town anticipated - or contracted for - for the new truck to be finished. Long enough for the board to welcome Rafus’ suggestion that the town’s purchasing policy should include provisions for deadline and penalty clauses. Once the board members were persuaded that the end of the wait really is near, they voted to advertise the old truck for sale; a minimum bid will be set.

A quarterly report from Deerfield Valley Rescue showed a drop in calls to Halifax, with only seven for the quarter. EMS chief Christina Moore noted that “we normally get 40 to 50 a year.”

Co-emergency management directors Ross Barnett and John LaFlamme had already submitted their report, but there was a follow-up discussion centered on communications equipment and facilities. The new DSL service will soon be up and running; when it is, the satellite service will be discontinued.

No one present was happy to hear board and broadband committee member Earl Holtz say that the wireless broadband service promised by VTel for the end of 2013 may not materialize until sometime in 2015. FairPoint, however, is extending access to DSL “a lot deeper into town than we expected,” Holtz said.

Selectboard chair Edee Edwards asked if anyone would be willing to attend a training session for writing community block development grants. Edwards, who is particularly interested in getting assistance for long-term emergency planning, is already too overscheduled to attend, and neither of her colleagues felt able to do so. Edwards lamented the lack of grant-writing expertise in the town, citing the planning commission’s experience with rejected applications. “But you do have someone with grant-writing experience here in town!” said Moore, who has successfully handled reimbursement for the Irene recovery projects. Edwards had not been thinking of Moore’s work as grant writing, nor was she aware that Moore has written grants for town-related services before. “She wrote a grant for the fire department,” observed board member Lewis Sumner. “It was good.”

“So are you willing to go to this?” Edwards asked. “I’m definitely going,” Moore replied.

In other business, Edwards reported that the town’s employer account with Vermont Health Connect has been set up, and the necessary information has been given to the employees. The town has an appointment with a navigator set for November 15 at 5 pm.
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