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Proposed city playground now in jeopardy

Posted on April 16, 2015 |
By Andy Kirkaldy



VERGENNES — The proposed East Street preschool playground appeared to be on life support after Tuesday’s Vergennes City Council meeting.

Project designer David Raphael of Middlebury landscape design firm LandWorks told the aldermen on Tuesday he could no longer continue to devote time to the project, and that because of needed sitework it appeared even the scaled-down version approved by aldermen this winter could not be built for its $42,000 price tag.

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City to offer recreation survey

Posted on February 23, 2015 |
By Andy Kirkaldy



VERGENNES — Vergennes aldermen have given the go-ahead for a recreation survey to be distributed at the city’s annual meeting at the Vergennes Opera House on the evening of Monday, March 2, and made available at the Vergennes Fire Department polling station during voting hours on March 3.

At their Feb. 17 meeting aldermen reviewed a draft of the 10-question survey, which is being written by Mayor Bill Benton; Dustin Hunt, a Vergennes resident who works for the Middlebury recreation department; and city resident Kathy Rossier.

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Four candidates seek three city council seats

Posted on February 19, 2015 |
By Andy Kirkaldy



VERGENNES — The Vergennes Town Meeting Day ballot will offer a race among four candidates — two incumbents and two newcomers — for three seats on the Vergennes City Council.

The race will not include Senior Alderman Randy Ouellette, who chose to step down after a decade.

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Opinion: Vergennes city council candidate is highly qualified

Posted on February 9, 2015 |
By Lynne Perry



On Thursday, Jan. 29, you reported on candidates running for Vergennes City Council. I would like to take the time to offer more information on Jeff Fritz.

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City may buy waterfront land for park, trail

Posted on February 5, 2015 |
By Andy Kirkaldy



VERGENNES — Vergennes aldermen on Jan. 27 met for the second time in two weeks behind closed doors to discuss a land deal with Mayor Bill Benton and his sister Betsey Benton.

Ownership of that land, along Otter Creek, could help the city create a park on the river’s east side while connecting the city’s MacDonough Drive docks with Main Street. The city has, since 2010, leased the parcel from the Bentons for a nominal annual fee. The land is in the flood plain, limiting its value.

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Opinion: Fritz not just a good renovator

Posted on February 5, 2015 |
By Terry Faith Weihs Terry



In Thursday’s, Jan. 29, article, “Vergennes duels set for city council,” longtime Addison Independent reporter Andy Kirkaldy describes candidate Jeff Fritz, as “best known in Vergennes for purchasing a large Victorian Main Street home in 2011 and renovating it before moving there from Washington state.” While committing substantive energy and resources to the restoration of one of our most important Vergennes residential assets is in and of itself most admirable, Andy missed the point.

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Opinion: Fritz a good pick for city council

Posted on February 5, 2015 |
By Debra Emerson



After reading the article “Vergennes duels set for city council, VUES board seats” in the Addison Independent Jan. 29 issue, I am compelled to write this letter.

My deep disappointment is that author of the article chose to write what he did with regard to Jeff Fritz. I have recently had the pleasure of working with Jeff at the Vergennes Opera House and the Friends of the Bixby Library; however, his involvement in our community includes a whole lot more.

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Contests set for Vergennes city council, VUES board seats

Posted on January 29, 2015 |
By Andy Kirkaldy



VERGENNES — The Vergennes Town Meeting Day ballot will offer two contested races, including a rematch of a 2012 contest decided by one vote, and a petitioned article.

It will not include Senior Alderman Randy Ouellette, who did not file a petition by Monday’s deadline and will step down after a decade.

One of the races is the second go-around between Susan Ferland and Cheryl Brinkman for the seat on the Vergennes Union Elementary School board now held by Ferland. Both are seeking a three-year term.

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City council to study recreation options

Posted on January 26, 2015 |
By Andy Kirkaldy



VERGENNES — Vergennes aldermen heard at their Jan. 13 meeting from Mayor Bill Benton that he would like them later this year to consider a comprehensive recreation plan for the city.

The first step, said Benton in a Wednesday interview, will be to create a group to assess the city’s recreation inventory and needs and take another look at what residents would like to see offered.

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Vergennes continues to handle sewer overflows

Posted on January 19, 2015 |
By Andy Kirkaldy



VERGENNES — At this past Tuesday’s Vergennes City Council meeting, aldermen, City Manager Mel Hawley and a few residents looked at city sewer system issues for about an hour.

A central point of discussion was the city system’s recurring problem of overflowing into Otter Creek, an issue detailed in a Jan. 12 Addison Independent article.

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