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I’m pleased to read that Mr. Shelden believes in wards. Wards (AKA districts) would provide more direct representation than each Selectboard member, currently elected at-large, attempting to represent the interests of 22,000 people.

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I can not applaud the choice of Vermont mother of the year. Every fiber in my being wants to rejoice in Marybeth Redmond’s accomplishments but her Vermont legislative stance on legalizing commercial marijuana products, I believe, will take us down a dead-end street for the future of our comm…

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Vermont’s citizen legislature returned to the State House on January 7th. The first week of session is always busy, with opening ceremonies and a lineup of committee hearings to review updates from administration officials and stakeholders. This year was no exception. We heard the Governor’s…

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This is my love letter to all who run the track at the Edge. We are different races, genders, and ages. Some of you gallop round and round the track effortlessly and others walk slowly with a cane. Some wear the latest running gear and one man walks in a buttoned-down shirt and dress pants. …

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I taught middle school physical education for 36 years. Some of the activities that we taught helped our students get to know their classmates that they normally would not associate with during their school day. We were trying to break down the cliques that are so prevalent in our schools an…

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I’m writing to express my concern about the proposal to amend our town charter to create wards at the village boundary. Don’t get me wrong: I believe wards would be a better way to go forward. However, the proposal has some effects we should avoid.

Reading Mr. Hayes letter to the editor in last week’s Reporter, I would have to say that he either has a very narrow view or failed to do his homework or he maybe hasn’t lived here very long and doesn’t know the history. First thing I would have to say is I don’t hear anyone whining to merge…

At the conclusion of a robust two-year community engagement process in 2014, Heart and Soul of Essex identified six core community values. One was “Community Connections” and it stated that “our deep connections with each other make Essex special. Neighbors help each other during good times …

It appears that the only part pushing for, no, crying for a merger with the Town is the Village. The Junction has been relentless in trying to wear us (the Town) down to agree to a merger. Therefore, I am in no way agreeing to any merger or any type of sharing. If they do not want to pay for…

For several years, I took an Essex Parks & Rec class at Sunset Studio, located in the geographic center of town on Route 15. It was convenient and close by, which is important because my husband and I share a car.

One of the all-time great, but reserved Vermonters that I got to know and work with has passed away. Giff Hart of Essex was a longtime, cherished journalism professor/ department chair at St. Michael’s College (and previously served the college in both public relations and sports information…

I recently heard about the couple and their puppy who were attacked by bear ‘hound’ hunting dogs this past October on public land. I hope that the legislature will take up the hounding issue this coming session. Sadly, hounds can be run all year and training seasons occur when bears, raccoon…

By now most people know that a successful merger of the Village and Town will result in lower taxes for Village residents and higher taxes for Town-outside-the-Village (TOV) residents. It is understandable that TOV residents might be against the merger for this reason alone. There is a group…

The conversation about the Future of Essex government is happening without anyone at the board table who’s solely representing the interests of the Town-outside-the-Village (TOV).

Heavenly Cents Thrift Shop, 37 Main St. in Essex Junction, is pleased to be giving back to the community with $1200 donations to each of the following local organizations:

Alison Knox Wermer [Dec. 5] supports a merged budget for Essex/Essex Junction over the status quo. In addition to the reasons offered, if merger passes in November, she can hope to see a municipal tax reduction of $541 at the expense of the owner of a comparable property outside-the-village,…

Please remember the families who live at 1005,1006 & 1007 Ethan Allen Ave, Essex Jct. CHT has left these families in limbo, causing stress and anxiety. CHT violates its own Mission Statement. Our neighbors deserve assurance and support in person (some struggle to read). The phrase uninte…

I support the plans put forth by the joint Essex governance boards to merge our community into one entity. Far, FAR too much time has been spent on this issue over too many years. It is time to put it to rest. Irene Wrenner’s comment in a recent article that the process is “moving too fast” …

The autumn merger survey was publicized mostly online. Residents without computers likely didn’t know about it. Paper-based surveys were available only in municipal buildings, if one knew where to look. In the end, only those motivated to respond took the survey. Therefore, the results aren’…

This week you won’t see the usual “Working towards a Greater Essex” column. With the holidays coming, we are taking a break to be with our families and consider all that we have been blessed with. We thank you for your thoughtful engagement as we consider our community’s future. Here are a f…

Governance (Merger) Subcommittee members are making recommendations to their peers on the Town Selectboard and Village Trustees.

Do you think it sounds plausible to feed yourself on a budget of $36 a week? To me, this seems practically impossible. However, that is what people across the state of Vermont. About $36 a week per individual is the average budget of someone receiving 3SqauresVT benefits. However, even this …

Ten elected officials, eight from the Village, issued a survey talking only about merger – an issue most of them campaigned on – and excluding other options for improving local government.

One of the questions on the most recent Essex Town/Essex Junction merger survey asked how interested respondents would be to serve on the governing board of a merged municipality. One hundred and forty four said the would be moderately likely to run for office, thirty six said they were very…

I am very disappointed that the Essex Westford School District recently denied EWSD girls the opportunity to play volleyball on Saturday mornings through by denying my facility request to use the ADL gym for 90 minutes Saturday mornings.

The Town has denied my say in regards to our town budget all these years seeing as I travel for work and routinely vote by absentee ballot in most elections. This is unacceptable to me, but clearly not to our town officials as this has never been changed. If they can’t make voting on an annu…

Elected officials are not telling us the true reason they want this merger all-of-a-sudden. So, let me clue you in. Most of them will benefit financially from it, while others pay. That’s unacceptable. These same elected officials tell us they represent everyone as Selectboard members, but t…

When it comes to taxes in Essex there are two perspective. When I speak to Village residents, I always hear that taxes are too high. To the point where some feel they must move away. Even within the Village I get two reasons taxes are too high: 1) The Village over spends or 2) the portion of…

Essex selectboard spent $50,000 on a survey to sell their merger plans. Why didn’t they spend that money to help finish paving Old Stage Road?

I’m writing to let everyone know that there have been no changes to Essex’s current leash laws, and dogs are allowed to run off leash at Indian Brook in certain designated areas. The current dog ordinance (4.040.010 part C) requires that at Indian Brook dogs must be leashed in the “boat laun…

I am an Essex Town resident who is concerned that there is a big tax shift being planned by the local government officials under the guise of merger.

Elaine Haney’s “Merger FAQ Recap” made me remember a 1979 mission I made to the People’s Republic of China, where I had my first taste of Peking Duck, a delicious delicacy. My delight though was short-lived when I learned the ducks were force-fed to fatten them up for slaughter. Now, after h…

Elected officials promised “to zip it and listen to you, the people we represent” in their Oct. 3rd column, but they offer only time-worn platitudes and outdated answers on Oct. 24.

The village better be careful what they wish for. A forceful takeover of the town outside the village may result in a resounding NO vote on everything that comes up on the ballot followed by some balance the budget cost cutting of luxury items.

It’s not the crime, they say, but the cover-up. The 1970s Watergate scandal that brought down President Nixon began with a simple a piece of tape. The discovery of that tape, used to hold open a door the Watergate Hotel burglars used to enter the Democratic National Committee, eventually mus…

George Tyler (October 17th “How is this merger effort different”) says that after the Board and Trustees “approve a merger plan and charter change proposal for November 2020, we’ll be able to answer most voters’ questions about how it will work and show how consolidation efforts over the las…