In other action, the board set the fiscal year 2014 sewer rate at $315 per equivalent connector unit (ECU). The board also scheduled sewer billing to be performed on September 16, and March 14, 2014. John Lazelle from the wastewater treatment plant reported that the town has an allowed daily flow of 135,000 gallons, but is currently using only 75,900 of that. Lazelle said that sewer usage and cost have gone down overall, with the biggest increase coming from changes in the student population at Deerfield Valley Elementary School. Lazelle said the relocation of the high school next year will be something to keep in mind as well. The town may want to keep the current allocation for the building after the high school moves out, depending on what might occupy the building next, as well as its future classification.
The selectboard approved the closure of a portion of Beaver Street for the Deerfield Valley Farmers’ Day Fair, but noted there has been controversy in town about the event. Closures will occur on Thursday, August 15, and Friday, August 16, from 4 to 10:30 pm, Saturday, August 17, from 9 am to 10:30 pm, and Sunday, August 18, from 8:30 am to 10:30 pm.
Selectboard members Jake White, Diane Chapman, and Susie Haughwout all said they had heard backlash over safety concerns from residents as well as town employees. “There has been some pushback from the community,” said Haughwout. “This is a huge event and a lot of people aren’t behind it. We need to communicate better that this is about community health and economic health.”
Murphy suggested the board hold a post-event review to address where concerns may be in following years. This will help the town avoid controversy two weeks before an event is set to begin.