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Guilford residents set March 12 as day for Statehouse visit to lobby for Sweet Pond

GUILFORD—Despite the winter weather, supporters of summer haven Sweet Pond have found sunshine to share.

According to Sweet Pond steering committee member Linda Hecker, Rep. Mike Hebert (R-Windham-1) has arranged for the Legislature to hold “Sweet Pond Day” on March 12.

That’s the day when a group will caravan to Montpelier to make the case to legislators for restoring Sweet Pond, part of the Sweet Pond State Park.

The pond, until drained by the state for safety reasons last summer, served as the only public swimming and recreation area in town.

State dam engineers had determined the dam posed a threat to the downstream homesteads. The 1928 dam was holding back the equivalent of 18 acres of water. State Dam Safety Section engineers deemed the structure unsafe in 2011.

Many residents rallied to save the pond.

Last spring, residents applauded representatives from the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation at a Conservation Commission when they announced the possibility of restoring the dam.

Funding for the project, estimated at $330,000, remains an issue.

In an email to the Sweet Pond mailing list, Hecker wrote that supporters will travel to Montpelier to press Sweet Pond’s cause in hopes of rallying support for funding restoration of the pond and dam.

Hebert, according to Hecker, also reported that Commissioner Michael Snyder, head of Vermont’s division of Forests, Parks & Recreation, “continues to support our efforts to restore the pond and has put appropriate funding into his capital budget for the coming year.”

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Originally published in The Commons issue #186 (Wednesday, January 16, 2013).

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