POSTPONED: Willow Park Playground Presentation


POSTPONED: Willow Park Final Playground Design Presentation

The Willow Park presentation of the final playground design scheduled for May 19 has been POSTPONED due to illness.

A new date will be announced towards the end of next week and will be scheduled to coincide with the ground breaking of the project which should be towards the end of June.

We have been following an aggressive timeline to minimize the amount of time before the new playgrounds are installed and this postponement of the presentation of the final playground designs does not affect timing of the project in any way.

Because things are moving smoothy and quickly so far, the date of the rescheduled presentation would have been very close to when the work will start — so it makes sense to combine the two events together.

We will share a new date for the combined presentation and groundbreaking as soon as it is available. We thank everyone for their understanding and we are very excited to see this work starting in late June.

For more information about the Willow Park playgrounds renewal project and process please visit the Town website page on Willow Park located at: https://benningtonvt.org/willow-park/

REMINDER: Town of Bennington Cemetery Clean Up This Week

REMINDER: Town of Bennington Cemetery Clean-up May 11-13

 
The Town of Bennington will be clearing White Chapel Cemetery, Hinsdillville Cemetery, and the Village Cemetery of all items on May 11th – May 13th, 2022. We will not remove any cement urns. If you have items that you wish to keep, please have them removed prior to Wednesday, May 11th, 2022. If you have any questions please call Kayla at the Town Office 442-1044.

PFOA Claim Filing Workshops for Class Action Settlement Claims

CLAIM FILING WORKSHOP FOR CLASS ACTION SETTLEMENT CLAIMS

AT THE BENNINGTON FIREHOUSE located at 130 River Street, 3RD FLOOR

Two Workshops:

Thursday MAY 26, 2022  •  5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Thursday JUNE 9, 2022  •  5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.


Childcare is available during the workshops for $3 per child

You must call 802-442-1053 to register prior to the date of the workshop you wish to attend.


What is the Class Action About?

In the Spring of 2016, residents in Bennington and North Bennington learned about a water contamination problem: PFOA, a “forever chemical.” The Vermont Department of Conservation stepped in quickly and began testing wells.  A group gathered, planned, and filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of the residents of Bennington and North Bennington. The claims were simple: medical monitoring for conditions because of exposure to PFOA, and compensation for the loss of property values, and for the annoyance, upset, and inconvenience the contamination caused.

In December, the Court announced preliminary approval of the $26.2 million Property Settlement, and another $6 million for 15 years of medical monitoring. This settlement provides eligible class members with significant benefits – money damages and long-term medical monitoring.


How do I file a claim? PROPERTY CLASS

You are a member of the PROPERTY CLASS if you owned property in the zone of concern on March 14, 2016. Even if you were always on town water; even if you did not sign up for the class action lawsuit; you are entitled to a settlement payment.

To see a map of the Zone, CLICK HERE

Each property owned by a person (not a business or corporation) on March 14, 2016 in the Zone of Concern will be entitled to a payment, whether you had a well or not, whether your property got hooked up to town water or not, and even if you were always on town water or owned a vacant lot.

But you must file a claim to get paid, and to receive medical monitoring.

If you are not certain if you are entitled to payment or if you want to learn the approximate amount of your payment based on the formula preliminarily approved by the Court, you can call David Silver at 802-442-6341 anytime, or you can attend one of two workshops to receive direct assistance in filling out your claim.

BRING YOUR DOCUMENTS to either workshop AND WE WILL FILE YOUR CLAIM ONLINE FOR YOU
To see what documents to bring CLICK HERE

YOU MUST FILE A CLAIM TO OBTAIN A SETTLEMENT PAYMENT. EVEN IF YOU SIGNED UP WITH AN ATTORNEY, YOU STILL NEED TO FILE A CLAIM TO RECEIVE A SETTLEMENT PAYMENT.

Settlement payments will be a minimum of:

• $1,000 for vacant lots;
• $4,000 for homes always on town water;
• $10,000 for homes with wells less than 20 ppt;
• $20,000 for homes with wells at or above 20 ppt;
• $30,000 for homes with wells at or above 20 ppt, but unfeasible to connect to town water

YOU MAY ALSO FILE A CLAIM FOR A DECEASED PERSON WHO OWNED PROPERTY IN THE ZONE ON MARCH 14, 2016 IF YOU ARE A LEGAL REPRESENTATIVE OF THE DECEASED PERSON’S ESTATE. For more information call David Silver at 802-442-6341.


EXPOSURE CLASS: Medical Monitoring Program

You are a member of the EXPOSURE CLASS if you consumed water from a well contaminated by PFOA and you have more than 2.1 ppb of PFOA in your blood system as reflected in a blood test.

As a member of the EXPOSURE CLASS you are entitled to free medical monitoring administered at our local hospital. You will receive a $100 incentive payment for making an exposure class claim, if you are eligible.

PLEASE BRING WITH YOU A COPY OF YOUR BLOOD TEST.

IF YOUR BLOOD WAS TESTED AND YOU DO NOT HAVE A COPY OF YOUR BLOOD TEST:
You can email AHS.VDHEnvHealth@vermont.gov or contact Monique Beaudry at 802-652-0357 to request a copy of your blood test results.

If you do not have a blood test but consumed water from a contaminated well, you may file a claim as an EXPOSURE CLASS member and a free blood test will be offered sometime in June.

MATERIALS

Save on Energy with Weatherization

 

While we still remember how cold winter was…

…and while it is still warm enough to do something about it before next winter! Here are three great organizations that will help you with weatherizing your home or apartment to save energy. Help do your part to fight climate change and save money in the process.

Heat Squad (heatsquad.org) is a program of NeighborWorks of Western VT (nwwvt.org) that offers low-cost energy audits for homes and businesses of all incomes. Heat Squad also assists with weatherization project coordination and accessing financing and state energy rebates from Efficiency Vermont.
BROC (broc.org) provides weatherization assistance to low-income households in Bennington and Rutland Counties. They also have several other programs for low-income households including tax assistance, food & nutrition, and housing/fuel/utility assistance.

WindowDressers (windowdressers.org) is a nonprofit organization based in Maine, with local chapters all over New England, that provides low-cost insulating window inserts that are assembled at community build events. Currently the local chapter has raised enough funds to entirely cover the cost for people who otherwise would not be able to afford it. Contact: 802-234-3050 – benningtoncountywd@gmail.com

THANK YOU to Callie Fishburn, our Regional Energy Coordinator at BCRC for providing this information and to Bill Karis and the Town of Bennington Energy Committee for their work promoting these resources and getting it out to the community.

Select Board – NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING – TIF District Substantial Change

TOWN OF BENNINGTON SELECT BOARD

NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING

TIF DISTRICT SUBSTANTIAL CHANGE

The Bennington Select Board will conduct a Public Hearing on Monday, May 23, 2022, at 6:00 p.m. at the Town of Bennington Fire Facility, Third Floor, 130 River Street, Bennington, Vermont, to consider an update to the Town of Bennington TIF District plan including an extension of the deadline to incur bonded indebtedness to fund improvements within the TIF District (a substantial change by TIF Rule).  This hearing is held in accordance with TIF Rule 1003.1 and 1003.2.1. Additional Information may be obtained from the Bennington Planning Department, Bennington Town Office, 205 South Street, in Bennington, Vermont, 802-442-1037

–Jeannie Jenkins, Chairperson, Town of Bennington Select Board

MATERIALS
District Plan Summary
TIF Substantial Change Financial Workbook
Bennington TIF District Map

Green Up Day is this Saturday!

Join in Green Up Day!

Call us at 802-442-1037 and let us know where you want to pick up, how many bags you want, and where you will leave the bags for town crews to pick up. THANK YOU everyone who participates!

Town Clerk Office Closing Early Friday May 6

NOTICE:

The Town Clerk’s Office ONLY will be closing at 11 AM on Friday, 5/6/22 to attend a training. All other town offices and departments will be open normal hours.

Open Seats for Boards and Commissions – Deadline May 16

Get Involved in Your Town Government!

Available positions on Town Boards and Commissions are filled on an annual basis by the Bennington Select Board. Information about all positions on Town Boards and Commissions are noted in the Annual Town Report and open positions are listed below. Anyone interested in serving on a board and/or commission is encouraged to send a letter of intent stating which board or commission you are interested in serving on to the address below. The deadline for for submitting a letter of intent is May 16, 2022.

Bennington Town Office Building
c/o Stuart Hurd
205 South Street
Bennington, VT 05201

You can find more information about how to get involved on the town website: https://benningtonvt.org/boards-commissions/get-involved/

BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS
The following list of the Town of Bennington Boards and Commissions includes a brief description of the duties of each office and those positions that will become available June 2022.


DEVELOPMENT REVIEW BOARD – The Development Review Board hears and decides upon permit applications regarding development in the Town of Bennington including, Variance Requests, Conditional Use Requests, Site Plans, Design Plans, Planned Unit Developments, Planned Residential Developments, Subdivisions, and Appeals of the Zoning Administrator’s decisions. Board members will be expected to attend at least one training session annually to develop and maintain the skills and knowledge necessary to perform their powers and duties on the Board.

(Appointed to 3-year term) – Term Expires
2 POSITIONS OPEN 1 POSITION OPEN – 6/25 6/24


HOUSING AUTHORITY – An autonomous body appointed for terms of five years by the Select Board which acts as the Board of Directors for Housing Authority properties (Willowbrook, Brookside Apartments, Beech Court, and Walloomsac Apartments) and oversees the staff and sets policies for operation.

(Appointed to 5-year term) – Term Expires
1 POSITION OPEN – 6/27


BOARD OF LISTERS – An appointed position with a term of two years. Meetings are held once or twice per month or as needed. The Listers inspect properties, approve assessments developed by the Assessor’s Office and hear and act upon appeals by property owners.

(Appointed to 2-year term) – Term Expires
2 POSITIONS OPEN – 6/24


PLANNING COMMISSION – An appointed position with a term of four years. Meetings will be established when the Commission meets. This is a five-member board. The Planning Commission drafts, revises, updates, and upholds the provisions of the Town Plan; makes recommendations to the Select Board regarding amendments to the Zoning Bylaw, sign ordinance, and subdivision regulations; actively participates in the preservation of historic sites and agricultural lands; and is charged with the overall planning of Bennington.

(Appointed to 4-year term) – Term Expires
1 POSITION OPEN – 6/26


REGIONAL COMMISSION – An appointed position with a term of two years. The Regional Commission, part of a county-wide planning commission charged with development of the overall regional planning policies, is empowered to develop budgets, employ staff, and assist in development of a regional plan.

(Appointed to 2-year term) – Term Expires
1 POSITION OPEN – 6/24


ENERGY COMMITTEE – A committee established by the Select Board to pursue implementation of the Town’s Energy Plan, advocate for energy conservation and renewable energy projects, and report on a regular basis to the Select Board. The committee shall be comprised of seven (7) members.

(Appointed to 2-year term) – Term Expires
1 SELECT BOARD MEMBER 2 POSITIONS OPEN – 6/23 6/23


COMMUNITY POLICING ADVISORY REVIEW BOARD – This is an appointed position for a three-year term. The Board will consist of a minimum 5 members but not more than 7 members from the community. Community is defined as a resident of the Town of Bennington, Old Bennington or North Bennington or someone who works or has demonstrated a significant (8 hours per week or more) commitment to volunteerism in Bennington. All members must be Vermont residents. In collaboration with the Bennington Police Department (BPD), the Bennington Select Board, and Town staff, this Board will make recommendations on police training and community collaboration efforts, review proposed policies and procedures of the BPD, review anonymized data on complaints and compliments, analyze data focused on equity and areas of need and compare it to other local, state, and national trends, and foster collaborative efforts within the community.

7 POSITIONS OPEN

In year one, three CPARB members will be appointed to hold (3) year terms and four members to hold (2) year terms. In year two, two members will be appointed to (3) year terms and two members will be appointed for (2) year terms. Beginning in year three, all terms will be for three years. No member may serve more than seven consecutive years on the board. Former members are eligible to apply after not serving for one year.


HISTORIC PRESERVATION COMMISSION was not included in announcement as there are no openings.

Hydrant Flushing Happening Now Through May 6

Hydrant flushing is happening now!

The semi-annual hydrant flushing began the week of April 25 and will continue until May 6, 2022. This is a requirement that the town must follow – but for good reason; it keeps the water system from having sediment buildup and makes sure that all hydrants are functioning properly in the case of an emergency.

Please remember to run your cold water until clear if your water is discolored… that will prevent sediment from being introduced into your hot water heater!

We recommend scheduling use of clothes washers after the hydrant flushing in your neighborhood and after your water has cleared.

Shout out to Dan Stall and the rest of the Bennington Water Department team for getting this important work done!

Spring Cemetery Clean Up Notice

Town of Bennington Cemetery Clean-up

The Town of Bennington will be clearing White Chapel Cemetery, Hinsdillville Cemetery, and the Village Cemetery of all items on May 11th – May 13th, 2022. We will not remove any cement urns. If you have items that you wish to keep, please have them removed prior to Wednesday, May 11th, 2022. If you have any questions please call Kayla at the Town Office 442-1044.