At the Select Board’s November meeting, Hardwick Police Chief Aaron Cochran presented plans for the addition of a new officer to the department. The HPD has applied for a federal grant to help cover the cost of an additional entry-level officer’s salary for three years, after which that cost would need to be assumed by the HPD budget, of which Greensboro pays a share. If the grant is received, an existing officer would be promoted to detective. Statistics show that our area has seen an increase in crime, which Chief Cochran attributes primarily to the drug problem. Working with Hardwick Town Manager Jon Jewett, the Hardwick and Greensboro select boards will put together two versions of the HPD budget to reflect both receipt of the federal grant and no receipt of the grant.
The Vermont School Boards Association (VSBA) released a new video to help explain how the education portion of your property taxes is calculated. In a posting earlier this fall, we informed you of the pending shortfall in the State’s Education Fund. This shortfall will likely impact your property taxes next year. School districts are currently building budgets for presentation to the voters at town meetings in March. In Greensboro, voters will be asked to approve three separate budgets: one at town meeting on March 6 for the Greensboro Town School District, which funds preschool education, one for the Lakeview Union Elementary School at its annual meeting on Thursday, March 8, and one by Australian ballot at town meeting for Hazen Union High School. A budget presentation for Hazen Union is currently scheduled for Thursday, February 26 at the high school in Hardwick.
The short video is available below:
As we near the start of the 2018 Vermont Legislative Session, reports are emerging that the State Education Fund will face a significant shortfall. The impact on property taxpayers, both resident and nonresident, could be significant. As the session unfolds and the impact becomes clearer, the GA will endeavor to keep its membership informed of possible tax impacts. For some background information on what is at stake, the following articles are helpful and informative:
At the Annual Meeting of the Vermont Land Trust earlier this month, Clive Gray, chair of the Greensboro Land Trust, received the Richard W. Carbin Community Conservation Award. The award recognizes conservation partners who demonstrate a commitment to conservation in their communities. Clive has served the Greensboro community for many years on both the Greensboro Land Trust and the Greensboro Conservation Commission. His dedication to the preservation of our beautiful natural spaces benefits all of us. Congratulations, Clive, and thank you for all your hard work and dedication.
Many of you completed a survey last year for the Greensboro Planning Commission to provide input on the Commission’s ongoing work redrafting our Town Plan. The intent of the new Town Plan is to guide and support change in our community over the next eight years. The results of the survey helped the Commission craft a vision for Greensboro. The vision, which will be the basis for preparing the Town Plan, is shared below.
Greensboro residents aspire to see a future for the community where:
- The Town’s rural character is viewed as a significant benefit that should be protected.
- As a community, there is a strong sense that conservation of our natural resources should be a high priority.
- Greensboro continues to attract and enjoy vibrant and unique small businesses that sustain tourism, support our economy, and are gathering places for local residents.
- Greensboro is attractive for both retired families as well as new families raising young children.
- Greensboro, a small New England town, is the home of many cultural opportunities typical of larger towns.
- The community offers a multitude of recreational activities for young and old.
- The community strongly supports lifelong education, with the important benefits it provides to the community.
The Commission would welcome your input and comments on these questions:
Is the vision consistent with your expectations for the future of Greensboro?
Second, the Town Plan must include specific actions that will move the community towards this vision. What actions would you like to see that will support the vision?
Your thoughts are appreciated and welcomed!
Finally, the Commission still needs members. You do not need to be a registered voter in Greensboro to serve on the Planning Commission. If you would like to play a role in defining the future of our community, please let us know!
Please email your responses to Dan Predpall, Chair of the Greensboro Planning Commission at [email protected] .
The GA held its Annual Meeting last week in the Sanctuary of the Greensboro United Church. The meeting was well-attended despite the last-minute change in venue. The membership heard reports from several GA committees. They also heard a detailed update from the Lake Protection Committee on the status of discussions with the State’s Agency of Natural Resources to regain the authority to set and adjust the lake level for Caspian. In addition, attendees had the opportunity to honor Janet Long, this year’s recipient of the Greensboro Award, as well as learn more about improving bike and pedestrian safety from the Interim Executive Director of Local Motion. Other presenters included Sue Wood, current Chair of the Greensboro Select Board and Victoria Von Hessert, current chair of the Lakeview Union School Board. Finally, Sarah Waring, Executive Director of the Center for an Agricultural Economy presented the membership with news and information about this organization and the work they do in the greater Hardwick economy to improve food security, incubate local businesses, and improve school and institutional nutrition.
The membership approved the 2018 budget, year-end financial report, and the auditor’s report, as well as the 2018 and 2020 slate for the Board of Trustees. These materials, as well as individual committee reports, are available for review on our website. Thank you for joining us at this year’s Annual Meeting.
In recent years, Greensboro and the Caspian Lake community have seen an uptick in the use of Chinese paper lanterns. Several residents have indicated concern about the environmental impact and safety of these lanterns. They have been found in the lake, on people’s cottages and lawns, and in farmer’s fields where they pose a serious health risk to livestock if they and the wires they contain are baled or ingested by animals.
The GA Board hoped to gain more input from the membership at its Annual Meeting last week, but a full agenda limited the available time for discussion. The Board anticipates discussing in future meetings what, if any, position the GA should take on the use of these lanterns. They are actively seeking member input to inform discussions on this issue. Please leave comments here or in the GA’s Facebook Group. To ensure that input helps the Board better understand the community’s position on this issue, the Communications Committee would like to remind participants that discussion should be kept respectful. All comments are subject to review by the communications team and inflammatory or derogatory remarks will be removed.
Kingdom Games is returning to Greensboro and Caspian Lake for the final leg of their Swim the Kingdom Week on Sunday, August 20. Twenty-five swimmers are already signed up to swim. Event sponsor Kingdom Games has lowered the cost of the swim to $50 and local swimmers in the Orleans, Essex, and Caledonia counties can do this swim with a 50% discount.
If any of you have some time you can give to the day, Kingdom Games could use additional boats to support swimmers if needed. Every swimmer is escorted by a kayak. As in previous years, swimmers leave the beach at 9, swim to Bathtub Rocks and return. A couple of folks may want to shuttle back to the beach.
Organizer Phil White brings his boat to each lake they swim, but with the increased numbers, they would appreciate the assistance of a few more boats. They should be done by about 1 pm.
If you can help with boat support, please contact Phil White at Kingdom Games through the website below. Registration information for the swim is also available below.
Mark your calendars for the Annual Meeting of the Greensboro Association. This year’s meeting will include our regular business meeting, reports from town and school board officers, and a presentation by Sarah Waring, Executive Director of the Center for an Agricultural Economy (CAE). Learn more about how the CAE is working to build a healthy food system in the greater Hardwick community through collaboration opportunities, improving food access and hunger relief, educational outreach, and building community infrastructure. Visit their website here: https://www.hardwickagriculture.org
This year’s meeting will be from 4-6 PM on Thursday, August 3 at the Greensboro United Church Sanctuary.
The Greensboro Association held the Sixth Annual Caspian Challenge this past weekend. Ninety runners and walkers from Greensboro and surrounding communities joined us at the ballfield on Tolman Corner for this annual Sunday outing. Proceeds from this year’s event go to the GA’s Lake Protection Fund. Co-sponsored by Circus Smirkus and the Cellars at Jasper Hill, the run brought runners of all ages together to compete in either a 5K or the 6.8-mile loop around the lake. Many families participated and this year saw a record number of children entering both the 5K and the lake loop. The field was competitive and conditions (cool temperatures and overcast skies) made for a fast race. Everyone enjoyed delicious homemade baked goods at the finish.
Evan Thornton-Sherman, age 13, captured the lake loop in a winning time of 42:56. He led the field from the start, but no one could catch him. In the 5K, overall winner was 12-year old Cormac Leahy of Greensboro with a time of 20:41. Complete results are available here:
Just a few of the local businesses that provided prizes for the event include:
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Craftsbury General Store
Special thanks to Stew and Becky Arnold, the Jenkins Family, and a host of volunteers for making this event happen this year.
Vermont Agriculture Secretary Anson Tebbetts will speak at the Greensboro Land Trust’s annual public meeting on Monday at 7:30 p.m. in the Greensboro UCC Fellowship Hall. Tebbetts will discuss the current agricultural scene as it affects our region.
The Greensboro Land Trust is celebrating its 25th anniversary. GLT co-founder Nancy Hill will introduce Tebbetts. His talk will follow a brief business meeting. Refreshments will be served.
The Lakeview school building needs significant repairs and renovations to remain safe and code-compliant and to continue to meet the educational needs of Greensboro and Stannard children. This forum will be the second opportunity to learn more about the options for addressing renovation needs, including each scenario’s possible cost.
More information is available at the school board website, https://lakeviewschoolboard.ossu.org/lakeview-facilities.html
The board’s website will be updated frequently with new materials and information about the possible renovation for your review in advance of the forum. Be sure to check back often.
The forum will take place on Thursday, July 20 at the Lakeview Union School.
6:15 pm: Tour of school facilities
7:00 pm – 8:30 p.m.: Forum and discussion
All are welcome to attend.
Wonder & Wisdom and The Art House announced an expansion of their collaboration into a formal merger of the two organizations last week. Now known as WonderArts, the community-based nonprofit will be offer more diverse, expansive, and creative opportunities to the communities of Craftsbury, Greensboro, Hardwick, and beyond. With a continuing focus on the cultivation of learning and exploration, WonderArts seeks to enrich our community, schools, and economy through creativity, conversation, and collaboration focused on the arts, recreation, and innovative programming that will serve multiple generations.
More information, especially about upcoming summer programming, is available at their website, https://wonderartsvt.org. The summer newsletter, located at the WonderArts website, provides a snapshot of their collaborative programming over the past year.
The Greensboro Planning Commission currently has two vacancies. The commission meets the second Monday of the month at 7 PM. You do not have to be a full-time Greensboro resident to serve on the commission.
This is a 7-member board that is responsible for developing amendments to the zoning bylaws and the town plan. They also consider proposed amendments submitted by others, including those submitted by petition. In addition, they prepare and approve written reports on any proposed amendment for review by the select board. As many will remember from last year’s annual meeting, the commission is currently working on a redraft of the Greensboro Town Plan.
If you are interested in serving, contact the town office at 533-2911, or send a letter of interest to:
Town of Greensboro, Attn. Planning Commission, PO Box 119, Greensboro, VT 05841.
Read our Spring Newsletter! Lots of news and information about upcoming events in Greensboro. Thank you to Whitney Sowles, our Newsletter Editor.
Since last summer, the Lakeview Union School Board has been assessing the functionality of our school facilities. The existing Lakeview Union School building has served students from the Greensboro and Stannard communities well for the past 30 years. Our facility, however, is now in need of significant repairs and upgrades to remain not only safe and code-compliant, but also to meet the demands of a 21st century learning environment. We want Lakeview to continue to provide our students with an inviting space to learn and grow.
We would like to invite the residents of Greensboro and Stannard to the first in a series of conversations about this issue on Wednesday, May 24 at 7 PM at the Lakeview School. This is an opportunity for us to share with you the challenges we as a community are facing when it comes to our building and our options for addressing them. But most importantly, this is a chance for us to hear from you, the school’s stakeholders, to help us get a better understanding of what the community feels would be an appropriate direction to take on this critical issue.
We hope you can join us on the evening of May 24. For more information, please visit the Lakeview school board website at https://lakeviewschoolboard.ossu.org
That’s right, this is not an oxymoron! You are invited to camp at 409 Breezy Ave on Saturday June 3rd and together we’ll get camp set up for the summer season, Smirkus style! This involves painting, gardening, cleaning and lots of fun! Bring your foam hammers, your polychromatic paintbrushes, and your clown work boots for a day of fun and can-do spirit as we ready the new camp facility for its fabulous third summer.
We’ll be working from 9-5pm, any time you can spare is appreciated! Lunch and snacks are provided. To sign up, visit https://www.smirkus.org/whoswhoboard/volunteer/
The 2017 Circus Smirkus Big Top Tour theme is Night at the Museum, and the Greensboro shows will be held on July 2nd at 1 and 6 pm. Tickets are on sale now at the Smirkus website, https://www.smirkus.org .
It’s the time of year when camp owners return and begin opening cottages for summer use. With all the cleaning that is often needed to make a camp homey again, it’s easy to lose sight of the importance of choosing safe cleaning products for our lakes. Avoiding phosphates, bleach, and other chemical detergents and cleaners can contribute to helping keep our lakes clean. Willey’s carries many eco-friendly cleaning products for home use. Other alternatives to chemical cleaners include white vinegar, baking soda, and hydrogen peroxide instead of bleach.
Happy camp opening season!
The Greensboro Arts Alliance & Residency recently announced plans for its summer season in our community. Plans include a production of William Saroyan’s The Time of Your Life. Directed by Sabra Jones, the production will take place in the GUCC Sanctuary on August 19. Auditions will be held over the Memorial Day Weekend.
In addition, GAAR will hold its Second Annual Sowles Gala on Sunday, August 13 at the Highland Lodge. Come and enjoy an evening of delicious food and joyful music and theater as GAAR’s artists present songs, dances, and monologues to round out a lovely summer evening.
Finally, under the direction of Heidi Lauren Duke, GAAR will present Bon Appetit, an opera about Julia Child. Performances are scheduled for June 30, July 1, and July 5 at the Hardwick Town House. The shows will also feature additional arias and songs related to food, as well as tasty chocolate cake and other provisions provided by area restaurants and food producers.
Stay tuned for information about show times and tickets.
Winter in Greensboro and across Vermont was on the milder side this year. As a result, health agencies are anticipating a challenging tick season for anyone who enjoys being outside in Vermont. There are several varieties of ticks in Vermont, and not all are prone to biting humans. For photos and information on each tick variety, visit here:
Unfortunately, despite our far northern location, we are not immune to these concerns, and anecdotal reports of people removing ticks from pets and themselves have already been shared around town.
While we all enjoy Greensboro for its natural beauty and plentiful opportunities for outside recreation, gardening, and forest management, we want you to remain safe and healthy. The Vermont Department of Health provides some excellent resources for tracking ticks across the state, performing tick checks, as well as information on prevention and removal. Find more information here:
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