Jay voters approve $6,000 transfer for streetlights

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JAY — It took less than five minutes Monday to elect and swear in Darryl Brown as town meeting moderator, recite the Pledge of Allegiance and vote to transfer $6,000 from the undesignated fund to cover costs for streetlights.

None of the nine residents, including the five members of the Board of Selectpersons and Town Manager Shiloh LaFreniere, had any questions.

The board and Budget Committee members reduced the amount for streetlights from $63,449.51 to $48,000 in this year’s budget approved by voters in June. The intent was to remove a quarter of the lights.

A Streetlight Committee recommended which streetlights should be removed. That reduced the number from 397 to 270, and the number of special facilities from 17 to 14, LaFreniere said in November.

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She recommended that $6,000 be transferred from the town’s undesignated fund to cover unbudgeted expenses for the lights.

She based her recommendation on the current fixtures and the current delivery costs that brought the total average annual streetlights cost to $50,219.66. It left a $2,319.66 difference between what was raised by voters in June. In addition, the town had to pay higher electricity bills in July and August prior to the lights being removed and the new electricity rates going into effect in September. She estimated the amount at $1,200 per month.

LaFreniere estimated the total amount needed was $4,800 but to ensure the town has enough money in the account she recommended the higher amount to be transferred. Any money not used would roll into the general fund.

In other business, LaFreniere updated the board on a meeting on the Fire Rescue Department bylaws. Larry White Sr., the previous fire chief/public safety director, died on Oct. 5 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.

Mike Booker has been acting chief since February.

Town officials agreed last month to follow state law to hire a fire chief and to update the department’s bylaws.

Board of Selectpersons Vice Chairman Justin Merrill, Selectperson Tim DeMillo and LaFreniere met with members of the department last week. They mainly examined positions and requirements for those positions, LaFreniere said.

She is putting a draft together and they will meet again Wednesday to review it.

dperry@sunjournal.com

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