Voters to decide on future of Essex and Essex Junction

Published: Nov. 1, 2021 at 11:20 PM EDT|Updated: Nov. 2, 2021 at 5:32 AM EDT
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ESSEX JUNCTION, Vt. (WCAX) - Essex Junction residents will decide Tuesday whether they want to separate from the town of Essex.

This has been an ongoing debate for years. Since a failed merger vote last spring, officials from both municipalities say they’ve been working on logistical aspects of a split, such as the parks departments and law enforcement.

If the split goes through, the town of Essex will lose 42% of its tax base.

Essex Selectboard Chair Andy Watts said it’s unlikely the separation will fail.

“The village has said they will be hiring their own manager,” Watts explained. “We are discontinuing the joint management agreement. The next steps from there -- both municipalities will need to figure out what their management is going to look like.”

If and when the separation vote passes, the Legislature will have to approve the charter change. Watts said he doesn’t expect that to happen until about April.

In-person voting is taking place from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Essex High School.

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