ESSEX JUNCTION — The Village trustees approved the charter for the proposed City of Essex Junction last night in an unanimous vote.
The trustees began work on the 20-page document — which defines the organization, powers, functions and essential procedures of a new City of Essex Junction — at the end of April, after an attempt at merging with the Town of Essex failed.
The charter would become effective and the City of Essex Junction would be established on July 1, 2022, should the charter be passed by voters on Nov. 2 and be approved by the Vermont Legislature during the upcoming session.
A transition period, during which the City of Essex Junction would continue to receive and pay for consolidated services with the Town of Essex for administration, assessing, clerk/treasurer, finance, information technology, police, public works and stormwater, would begin on that same day and end no later than June 30, 2023.
At the end of the transition period, the City of Essex Junction would be fully established and organized, according to the charter.
Though the trustees approved the charter on Sept. 14, they have until Oct. 13 to make amendments based on feedback from the community, which will be taken at public hearings on Sept. 28 and Oct. 12.
"The charter is something that, during work sessions, we've been reviewing and commenting on for four months or so," President Andrew Brown said. "This is not the first time we are seeing it."
Trustee Raj Chawla moved to approve the charter and was seconded by trustee Dan Kerin. The remaining trustees — Brown, George Tyler and Amber Thibeault — also voted yes.
"This feels like a really big lift," Brown said, laughing. "Not going to lie."