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January 19th, 2017
MIDDLEBURY — The Addison Central School District Board on Tuesday agreed to ask Middlebury-area voters to authorize approximately $37.3 million in spending to cover the combined operating costs for all of the district’s schools during the 2017-2018 academic year.
The $30,428,802 portion to be raised by taxes represents a 2.17-percent decrease in the amount budgeted for education spending in the nine schools in the union this year.
BRISTOL — The five towns of the Addison Northeast Supervisory Union will again be asked to take a hard look at renovating the 48-year-old Mount Abraham Union High School facility, including possibly with funds from a bond.
“It’s really about planning and fiscal responsibility,” ANeSU Superintendent Patrick Reen said at a Mount Abe school board meeting Tuesday.
MONKTON — Helena Nicolay wears leather gloves and a “ratty, old jacket” as she walks up to a barred owl. She moves silently, slowly, deliberately — averting her eyes so as to not present herself as a fellow predator. She holds out a sliver of beef heart at the end of a shorter-than-most-of-us-might-feel-safe-with pair of metal tongs.
The owl snaps up the meat and devours it.
Nicolay offers a little bit more. And a little bit more. The owl eats hungrily, then tilts its head.
MIDDLEBURY — Seven years after vacating downtown Middlebury’s Frog Hollow district, the Middlebury Studio School has purchased its new headquarters at 2377 Route 7 South and is now looking to expand that building to keep pace with the growing popularity of its art and pottery classes.
“Our goal is to be a community art center,” board member Barbara Z. Nelson said of the school’s great potential as a future site for lectures, children’s summer camps, painting workshops, panel discussions and even maybe an artist in residence.
LEICESTER — Residents around the Otter Valley Unified Union School District were shocked to read a letter to the editor last week stating that the beloved Harvest Program at Foxcroft Farm would be ending after almost two decades helping OV students who may not fit in a traditional classroom.
Harvest Program founder and Executive Director Anne Young explained in the letter that it had been a tough decision that was not based on financial need.
ADDISON COUNTY — Candidates for local offices such as selectboard, school board and town moderator face a deadline for submitting petitions to their local town clerks. And those who wish to run for a school board position in the Middlebury area have a higher bar to clear in terms of signatures than in the past.
Those running for any town or school office have until the end of the business day on Monday, Jan. 30, to file their petition papers. Petitioners must gather 5 percent of the checklist, or 30 signatures — whichever is fewer — for a town office.
BRISTOL — Organization and focus. Those are the key ingredients for Alganesh Michael — a South Burlington chef who specializes in her native Eritrean and Ethiopian food. Forget carefully measured spices and ingredients, Michael said she “likes to mix things; I don’t like following directions.” She learned how to cook as a teenager from watching her mom and then trying it herself.
VERGENNES — Vergennes residents will have a choice on Town Meeting Day between an incumbent mayor who recently announced he will seek a third — and he says final — term, and a former mayor who served three terms between 2007 and 2013 and became mayor by unseating an incumbent.
Mike Daniels, 69, who has also served five years in two separate stints on the Vergennes City Council, the second of which ended this past March, said late this summer he began to get the itch to return to city politics.