Virginia Ray

Brattleboro forum will discuss EMS options

Selectboard plans to make a final decision on future of fire-based EMS on Sept. 19 after months of study

As the Selectboard continues to unpack and scrutinize the myriad details involved in deciding upon a new emergency services (EMS) delivery plan, the next big date is Aug. 29.

That's when requests for proposals (RFPs) from potential interested third-party providers are due.

"We have been moving through a process over many months," said board Chair Ian Goodnow during a fire/EMS transition update at the Aug. 15 board meeting.

"I see the discussion tonight as an opportunity for us to set the table and make sure everybody's on the same page for what's going to be happening in the next 35 days," he said.

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An entrepreneur picks up the pieces

After cleaning up from the devastating flooding in July — and barred from receiving federal help — D’Elia-Laskin has a goal: open her cannabis dispensary in September

Kellie D'Elia-Laskin is a shining example of what true mettle really looks like. The widowed, single mom and entrepreneur was on the cusp of opening her new cannabis shop at 2022 North Main St., when a state of emergency was declared in Vermont as epic flooding engulfed Londonderry on...

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Brattleboro takes a step to improve community safety

By month’s end, a working group hopes to hire a new consultant

This summer, Selectboard members have chosen the start of a path forward for the Community Safety Review that will come to fruition in about a year. In July, the board voted unanimously to adopt one of four options that had been put forth. The chosen plan includes hiring an...

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Living Memorial Park project comes alive

Recreation & Parks Director Carol Lolatte is getting her ducks in a row as the Living Memorial Park Generational Improvement Project starts to take shape. In March, Representative Town Meeting voted 98–19 to support a $4.1 million bond for the work, which includes improvements to the 1970s-era skating rink - replacing a 30-year-old condenser, a 25-year-old dehumidifier, and a rusting and uninsulated 49-year-old roof - as well as replacing lighting on the upper softball field with an LED system. "The...

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Brattleboro honing in on costs to provide EMS on its own

Although costs are becoming more sharply focused as the town continues to explore supplying fire and emergency services in future, there's still much more to know. The Selectboard heard a fourth informational report regarding what is being called the Fire/EMS Transition Project at its July 25 meeting, which focused on what a fully municipal service model or contracted services model might look like. "We have a long way to go," said Selectboard member Peter Case, pointing out again that the...

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Vt. Supreme Court rejects challenge to Putney housing

A three-judge panel of the Vermont Supreme Court has rejected the latest appeal by opponents of a proposed affordable housing community on Alice Holway Drive in Putney, but despite a new construction start date of spring 2024, appellant Laura Campbell says she will take steps to request a re-argument of the appeal in front of the full court. The July 21 ruling by the state's highest court affirms the Environmental Court's decision earlier this year to reject an appeal to...

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Brattleboro eyes land-use changes to help housing crisis

How the town can help reduce housing barriers and create more options to help the housing crisis is on the docket for July 25, when the Selectboard will host a second of two public hearings about proposed land use amendments. The board adopted "advancing housing initiatives" as one of five overall primary goals for fiscal 2024 at its first-ever June retreat to identify top priorities in town. Selectboard members hosted the first hearing on July 11. "This is innovative and...

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Selectboard warned municipal EMS ‘no cash cow’

If the town were to take on running emergency services (EMS) entirely in-house, those who are exploring options say start-up costs could range from $1.3 to $1.9 million. “There isn't anyone in the town of Brattleboro who sees this as a cash cow,” said Assistant Town Manager Patrick Moreland at the Selectboard's June 20 meeting. “EMS services are expensive. There will be some revenue, but it's not a cash cow.” A town-run EMS system is one option on the table...

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