WARDSBORO >> The turnout at Town Meeting was scarce, but about 50 percent of registered voters showed for the primaries.
Seven articles were passed with little discussion, according to Town Clerk, Jackie Bedard. Bedard will in fact being wearing multiple hats after this election as she was voted in to three positions.
"I would say I was surprised at what a large voter turnout we had for the presidential primary, it's usually way lower than that and almost 50 percent from our checklist of eligible voters voted," said Bedard. "Town Meeting had an average attendance, about 60 at the most, out of 505 isn't a very good representation."
Seven articles were passed at the meeting where several positions were filled, such as: moderator (one-year term), Bob Backus; Town Clerk (one-year term), Jackie Bedard; Town Treasurer (one-year term), Jackie Bedard; Selectboard (three-year term), Michael Fitzpatrick (uncontested); Selectboard member (one year), Mitchell Plimpton (incumbant); Selectboard member (one year), Kathleen Andersen; Lister (thee-year position), Michael Hull; Auditor (three-year position), Nancy Meinhard; Trustee of Public Funds (three year), Pearl Dewy; First Sonstable (one-year term), Joe Novick; Second Constable (one year), Jerry Rathburn; Collecter of Delinquent Taxes (one-year term), Jackie Bedard; Town Agent (one-year term), Cherie Keeler Moran; Town Grand Joror (one-year term), Cherie Keeler Moran; Cemetery Commissioner (five-year term), Janice Hull and Library Trustee (five-year term), Mark Fernandes.
Bedard guesses that perhaps 60 people showed up to the meeting, but with some of the results it showed that 44 individuals voted on certain articles.
Article 4 was passed little discussion, which approved the Selectboard budget as published at $926,248. Bedard said this was reported as a 1 percent increase from 2015.
Article 5 was passed and approved for social service agencies. This budget went up about $3,600, from $95,909 to 909,509. Bedard said the increase was due to expenditures toward the fire department, library and Grace Cottage Hospital.
Article 6, voted to raise $843,857, which is a total sum of money going to raise by taxation to support the selectman's budget, payment on Gilfeather bridge, and voted allocation for Article 5.
Article 7: Adjourn
The only controversy was surrounding a gentleman's concerns with the Selectboard. First he asked why they did not fill a vacancy and then he asked why each officer did not give a faithful bond to the town which is under statue. Board members responded that they have not done so for years and that their insurance protects the town against monetary losses.
Power went out in the night where Town Meeting was held and did come back on until 8:30 a.m. Bedard said this didn't allow her a lot of prep time before the meeting, but that it was not anything too serious and the power was back on in time for the 9 a.m. meeting.
As for the primaries, there were 220 total votes, 150 toward Democrat and 70 to the Republican side. U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., won the Democratic vote with 134 votes and Hillary Clinton came in second with 16. On the Republican side, Donald Trump won with 29 votes; Marco Rubio, 15; John Kasich, 19; Ted Cruz, 5; Chris Christie,1 and Ben Carson, 1.
Maddi Shaw can be reached at 802-254-2311 ext 275.