By RUSSELL JONES
PROCTOR — The Proctor Selectboard approved a bid for $96,818 from Wright Construction Company Monday night to repair the front wall of the town office building. The front wall is currently braced to keep it from falling onto the sidewalk in front of the building, according to Town Manager Stan Wilbur. A state grant of $20,000 was received in January to partially fund the project.
Wilbur would like to get the remaining $76,818 from the Mortimer Proctor Trust fund and has filed an application with the trust. Wilbur said he is unsure if the result of the application will be back before Town Meeting so he will also put the question of funding to the voters.
“If we get the funds from the trust we’ll use those,” Wilbur said. “If not we’ll have to find other funding.”
A project to repair the Clerk’s office was also included in the application.
A mandatory pre-bid meeting was held Monday afternoon with contractors to view the Town Clerk’s office in preparation of a project that would address deficiencies in the office that were found recently.
“We had five prime contractors and a couple of sub-contractors,” Selectboard chair Bruce Baccei said. “Hopefully we’ll have some good numbers on that.”
The Clerk’s office was found needing extensive restoration after an air quality investigation was conducted. The total estimate for the office project is $112,000, not including some costs associated with moving the operation of the clerk’s office during renovations, and any new equipment that may be necessary.
“It’s all subject to funding,” Baccei said, regarding the two construction projects.
Last year at Town Meeting, voters approved $15,000 for mosquito spraying, but because the funding was not received until June, the board decided to hold those funds until this year.
“The board felt it would be better to wait to spend that money until this year so they could start early in the season with spraying and get better results,” Wilbur said.
Two of the select board members plan to attend a BLSG Insect Control District board meeting this Thursday to find out how much spraying they can purchase with the $15,000.
The BLSG has permits to spray the areas of Brandon, Leicester, Sudbury, Goshen, Pittsford, and also Proctor, but Proctor is the only town in that group that is not a member of the district and would have to negotiate spraying rates.
The BLSG has been in the midst of a lawsuit with Toxics Action Center, which is represented by the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic at the Vermont Law School over the validity of the spraying permits.
Toxics Action Center argues that the state should not have authorized BLSG to spray toxic pesticides because the documentation submitted by BLSG as part of the application process was incomplete. The cost of litigation has, in turn, caused spraying rates for member town’s to rise this year.
The board also dedicated the annual Town Report to Ray Beyette. Baccei presented Beyette with a copy of the photo and dedication page at the meeting and listed his many achievements. Baccei praised Beyette as being a member of the selectboard, fire department, planning commission, zoning board, transit district, Beaver Pond Committee, tree warden, inspector of lumber, solid waste district, and ancient roads committee.
“You forgot weigher of coal,” the quick-witted Beyette said with a smile. “I feel honored. Sometimes I’m a little hard to put up with, and I thank everyone who’s ever had anything to do with me.”