Public Safety Study Released; Public Meeting Scheduled

The Town of Manchester and Town of Dorset agreed to jointly study public safety functions and opportunities for greater collaboration and cooperation.

Municipal Resources Inc., the consultant selected by the Town of Manchester and Town of Dorset, has issued it final reports:

Police FINAL report

Fire and EMS Services FINAL report

The Manchester Selectboard has scheduled a public meeting for Wednesday, May 6 at 5:00 PM at Manchester Town Hall (6039 Main Street, Manchester Center, VT) in the Kilburn Meeting Room.

2014 Capital Improvement Program Approved

The Selectboard approved the 2014 Capital Improvement Program on September 30, 2014. The Board of Water Commissioners previously approved the plan on September 26, 2014.

The approved plan can be downloaded as two separate documents at:

2014 Capital Improvement Program (plan spreadsheet)

2014 Capital Improvement Program (plan text)

The approved plan will be incorporated into the Fiscal Year 2016 budget, which will be considered by the Selectboard and Town Meeting.

Anyone with questions is encouraged to contact John P. O’Keefe, Town Manager, at (802) 362-1313 (option 2) or j.okeefe@manchester-vt.gov.

The Civil War and the Equinox Guards historic presentation

The 2014 Fourth of July presentation, “The Civil War and the Equinox Guards,” is dedicated to Manchester’s long-serving Town Clerk Linda Spence, who passed away this year. The presentation was debuted on July 4, 2014 as part of the Town of Manchester’s annual Fourth of July celebration.  Funding for this project came from an Education and Outreach grant from the Champlain Valley National Heritage Partnership.

ACTING CREDITS:

Cyrus Hard – Louis Bronson

Douglas Dyer – Ace Burtonboy

Levi C. Orvis, Jr. – Connor Eastman (Long Trail School student)

George Sessions – David Quesnel

Capt. Charles Dudley – Wayne E. Bell

The Manchester Journal Editor – Andrew McKeever

MUSIC CREDITS:

“Battle Hymn of the Republic” – The Dorset Church Choir

“When Johnny Comes Marching Home” – Will Mosheim and Jamie Lee

“Battle Cry of Freedom” – Jane Wood

PRODUCTION CREW: 

Produced by the Town of Manchester

Written and Directed by John O’Keefe

Narration and Sound Editing by Greg Cutler and Birchtree Productions

Final Sound Editing, Music Recording and Sound Effects by Ryan McBride and McBride Sound Design

Director of Historic Research Richard Smith

SPECIAL THANKS TO:

Hildene and Brian L. Knight, Jim Brangan and the Champlain Valley National Heritage Partnership, The Manchester Journal, Long Trail School, the Manchester Police Department and Chief Michael Hall, Manchester Fire Department and Chief Philip Bourn, Ioana Drew and Tricia Hayes, the Manchester Parks and Recreation Department and its employees, Manchester VFW Post 6471, Liana Van De Water, Atlas PyroVision, the Dorset Church, and the Manchester Historic Society.

2014 First Quarter Local Option Tax Revenues Increase Again

The Town of Manchester released local option tax revenue figures for the first calendar quarter of 2014.

Overall, revenues increased $12,978 or 5.95% compared to the same quarter in 2013. For 2014 the Town collected $230,930 in local option tax revenues, compared to $217,951 for the same quarter in 2013. This comes after a 3.78% increase in the last quarter of 2013 and a 6.24% increase in the third quarter of 2013.

Sales tax revenue was $160,814, up from $146,266 for the same quarter in 2013. This represents an increase of $14,548, or 9.95%. Meals, rooms, alcohol tax revenue was $70,116, down slightly from $71,685 for the same quarter in 2013 after ten consecutive quarters of positive growth compared to the same quarter in the previous year. The decrease is $1,569, or 2.19%.

The increase in local option tax revenues is good news for two reasons. First, revenues help to reduce the local property taxburden. For the current fiscal year Manchester has the 19th lowest municipal tax rate in Vermont. Second, increases in tax revenues mean increases in economic activity on Main Street (and Depot Street).

4th Quarter 2013 Tax Revenues Increase 3.78%

The Town of Manchester released local option tax revenue figures for the fourth calendar quarter of 2013. Overall, revenues increased $9,867 or 3.78% compared to the same quarter in 2012. The fourth quarter increase comes after an even larger 6.24% increase in the third quarter.

Sales tax revenue was $183,885, up from $177,113 for the same quarter in 2012. This represents an increase of $6,772 or 3.82%. Meals, rooms, alcohol tax revenue was $86,690, up from $83,595 for the same quarter in 2012. This represents an increase of $3,095 or 3.70%.

The increase in local option tax revenues is good news for two reasons. First, revenues help to reduce the local property tax burden. For the current fiscal year Manchester has the 19th lowest municipal tax rate in Vermont. Second, increases in tax revenues mean increases in economic activity on Main Street (and Depot Street).

Manchester Has 19th Lowest Tax Rate

The Town of Manchester, for Fiscal Year 2014, has the 19th lowest Municipal Tax Rate for the State of Vermont. Manchester’s Municipal Tax Rates for Fiscal Year 2014 is $0.2199. Among municipalities with more than 3,000 residents, Manchester ranks third behind Rutland Town and Charlotte.

The analysis included town or city municipal taxes, special taxes levied by municipalities, such as fire, highway and police services as well as voted appropriations to social service agencies. The comparison did not include village taxes assessed by separate incorporated villages, including Manchester Village.

Fiscal Year 2014 Municipal Tax Rates and Populations

#19 – Manchester: $0.2199 (population 4,391)
#18 – Morgan: $0.2192 (749)
#17 – Sheffield: $0.1987 (703)
#16 – Fayston: $0.1954 (1,353)
#15 – Woodford: $0.1920 (424)
#14 – Rutland (Town): $0.1778 (4,054)
#13 – Charlotte: $0.1670 (3,754)
#12 – Averill: $0.1344 (24)
#11 – Averys Gore: $0.1344 (0)
#10 – Ferdinand: $0.1344 (32)
#9 – Lewis: $0.1344 (0)
#8 – Warners Grant: $0.1344 (0)
#7 – Warren Gore: $0.1344 (4)
#6 – Stratton $0.1330 (216)
#5 – Glastenbury: $0.1200 (8)
#4 – Brunswick: $0.0500 (112)
#3 – Victory: $0.0192 (62)
#2 – Lowell: $0.0000 (879)
#1 – Coventry: $0.000 (1,086)

In Bennington County, only Glastenbury and Woodford have tax rates lower than the Town of Manchester. Other comparable so-called “sending towns” under Act 60 are: Killington ($0.2889), Stowe ($0.3823) and Woodstock ($0.3670).