Quantcast

Is a flier misleading voters in Middlebury? - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Is a flier misleading voters in Middlebury?

Posted: Updated:
MIDDLEBURY, Vt. -

With Town Meeting Day one week away, some Middlebury residents are fired up about a last-minute flier sent out to voters. Town officials say the mailer informs residents about a $6.5 million project for new town offices. The bond vote will be on the ballot next week.

"I don't like people lying in my face," said Ron Kohn of Middlebury.

Some Middlebury voters are outraged after a selectman spoke out against his own board Tuesday night. Craig Bingham is raising concerns about the accuracy of a town flier promoting an upcoming bond vote.

"Looking at the outside of the mailer I noted that there are several errors on the 'Tax Impact' portion of the mailer," said Middlebury selectman Craig Bingham.

The pamphlet was sent to thousands of Middlebury voters detailing the plans and costs of a major project for downtown. The $6.5 million proposal would demolish the current town offices and build a new facility across town. A recreation space would also be created.

"I think it's a total win-win for the town of Middlebury. And I think that we desperately need to do this. This is an energy efficient hog," said Nancy Malcom of the Middlebury Steering Committee.

Malcom helped drafted the flier and is standing behind its accuracy. She says it is standard procedure for every big town project. Malcolm says Middlebury hired a third party to calculate the professional estimates. Residents will then have to vote if they support a bond to foot the bill. But Bingham says the numbers are wrong and misleading.

"I am deeply disturbed that false information has been published under the name of our town. I am disappointed that my taxpayer dollars have been spent on what comes off as a flagrant attempt to mislead the voter," said Bingham.

The flier also highlights problems with the existing facility, like code violations and issues with asbestos, insulation and crumbling bricks.

But Bingham says town records from April show a fire marshal determined the building was up to code.

"While they are not specific violations that the towns been charged with -- if you were to do a renovation -- all these codes violation issues would have to be remedied and resolved," said Select Board Chair Dean George.

George says the town has been surveying the building for years and experts advised them that renovations simply were not worth the huge costs.

Some residents say they appreciate the flier, while others claim it was an attempt to sway their votes.

"The scare tactics that are being used are probably the most egregious part of this. The idea that they must take the money and sell this piece of ground -- which for a lot of people, represent the family jewels," said Kohn.

The total price tag for the bond vote is $6.5 million, but town officials say Middlebury College will be paying for $4.5 million of that in order to have the land where the town offices currently are. That leaves taxpayers to foot the remaining $2 million.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • N.H. man killed in Lunenburg crash

    N.H. man killed in Lunenburg crash

    Monday, September 1 2014 11:33 PM EDT2014-09-02 03:33:55 GMT
    One man is dead following a tractor trailer rollover in Lunenburg.
    One man is dead following a tractor trailer rollover in Lunenburg.
  • 2 charged with skid-steer joyride on I-89

    2 charged with skid-steer joyride on I-89

    Monday, September 1 2014 10:15 PM EDT2014-09-02 02:15:25 GMT
    The theft of some construction vehicles caused chaos on the Interstate this weekend.
    The theft of some construction vehicles caused chaos on the Interstate this weekend.
  • Bike racers wrap up weekend events

    Bike racers wrap up weekend events

    Monday, September 1 2014 9:59 PM EDT2014-09-02 01:59:03 GMT
    The Green Mountain Stage Race took to the streets of Burlington Monday.
    The Green Mountain Stage Race took to the streets of Burlington Monday.
  • Allergy sufferers brave ragweed season

    Allergy sufferers brave ragweed season

    Monday, September 1 2014 7:08 PM EDT2014-09-01 23:08:26 GMT
    If you're sneezing, your nose is running and you're eyes are itchy once again this year -- you're not alone. Fall pollen counts are peaking in our region and proving tough for allergy sufferers looking to enjoy the outdoors.Despite a spate of heat and humidity, the signs of fall are undeniable. Cooler temperatures and color are on the way. And even though many think of spring as "allergy season" due to tree pollens, this time of year can be particularly tough for allergy sufferers, too -- bec...
    If you're sneezing, your nose is running and you're eyes are itchy once again this year -- you're not alone. Fall pollen counts are peaking in our region and proving tough for allergy sufferers looking to enjoy the outdoors.Despite a spate of heat and humidity, the signs of fall are undeniable. Cooler temperatures and color are on the way. And even though many think of spring as "allergy season" due to tree pollens, this time of year can be particularly tough for allergy sufferers, too -- bec...
  • Holiday drivers find lower prices at the pump

    Holiday drivers find lower prices at the pump

    Monday, September 1 2014 6:59 PM EDT2014-09-01 22:59:21 GMT
    Drivers this holiday weekend found lower gas prices at the pump.
    Drivers this holiday weekend found lower gas prices at the pump.
  • Sanders addresses Labor Day rally

    Sanders addresses Labor Day rally

    Monday, September 1 2014 6:51 PM EDT2014-09-01 22:51:52 GMT
    Community members gathered in Burlington's Battery Park Monday to celebrate Labor Day -- and hear from Senator Bernie Sanders.Union leaders addressed the importance of employees supporting one another. They also thanked the community for supporting Vermont's unions. Senator Sanders says the holiday is for working people to not only celebrate their gains, but to also address issues facing the working class."There's a lot of work in front of us if we're going to make sure that our kids and our ...
    Community members gathered in Burlington's Battery Park Monday to celebrate Labor Day -- and hear from Senator Bernie Sanders.Union leaders addressed the importance of employees supporting one another. They also thanked the community for supporting Vermont's unions. Senator Sanders says the holiday is for working people to not only celebrate their gains, but to also address issues facing the working class."There's a lot of work in front of us if we're going to make sure that our kids and our ...
  • Authorities seize animals from Santa's Land

    Authorities seize animals from Santa's Land

    Monday, September 1 2014 4:32 PM EDT2014-09-01 20:32:03 GMT
    The Windham County Sheriffs Department says it seized multiple animals from the theme park this weekend.
    The Windham County Sheriffs Department says it seized multiple animals from the theme park this weekend.
  • Body discovered in Massena

    Body discovered in Massena

    Monday, September 1 2014 4:02 PM EDT2014-09-01 20:02:43 GMT
    New York State Police are investigating an unidentified body found in Massena.
    New York State Police are investigating an unidentified body found in Massena.
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WCAX. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.