Some Wolcott Select Board Members are Departing

by Doug McClure

WOLCOTT – At the October 7 meeting, the Wolcott Select Board learned that two of its five members will not be on the board next year, including Chair Kimberly Gravel.

Board Chair Kimberly Gravel told the board that she will not seek re-election in March and will be absent from meetings for the next month. In light of that reality, Gravel asked that the board seek a replacement for her position to fill out her term. Board member Michael Davidson is moving out of Wolcott and also will not be at future meetings. Davidson provided the board with formal written notification of his resignation on October 7. With Davidson’s departure, Gravel made a motion to promote board member Linda Martin to the vice chair position. The town will advertise the vacancies. The term runs until Town Meeting in 2021.

Another vacancy now exists on the board of supervisors for the Lamoille Regional Solid Waste District due to a member missing three consecutive meetings. That position will also be advertised, with its term ending in March, 2021.

The board learned that a candidate for replacement plow truck was no longer available and got news of the road safety audit on the intersections of Route 15 with East Hill and North Wolcott Roads. In other plowing news, the board heard why the town highway department cannot pave the school parking lot this winter.

The town had its eye on a used plow, but that vehicle is no longer available. Road Foreman Dillan Cafferky had two options in its stead, a state vehicle for $5,600 and a new vehicle for $7,750, which has a three-to-four week lead time for delivery. Cafferky is investigating the condition of the used plow for the board to make a decision.

Due to the recent paving at the school parking lot, the town highway department cannot plow that lot. A concern exists that the department’s trucks will damage the area where the paving meets unpaved roads. Davidson is contacting the Wolcott School Board to advise them to find their own solution for plowing. The town is also advertising for a person to shovel around the town office on an hourly basis.

Wolcott received a Highway Safety Audit from the state about the intersection of Route 15 and North Wolcott Road, according to now-Vice-Chair Linda Martin. One recommendation is installing reflectors on the guardrail and a post on East Hill Road. The North Wolcott intersection is more complicated to figure out and “will come at a big cost,” according to the minutes, without specifics available as yet. Placing an additional solar speed sign on Route 15 is one recommendation being considered for permitting.

The town received a $5,000 grant toward helping with election safety during the pandemic, which required no matching funds.