Those wanting to keep the property in the town's possession, spearheaded by the Water Department, are attempting work with the Department of Conservation and Recreation to begin a feasibility study to test the site for wind development.
CHESHIRE – For the second year running, the town voted against allowing Selectmen to shop, and potentially sell, 440 acres of town land to the state Monday.
Signs had been posted, letters to the editor written, meetings and public forums held, and finally, voters gathered at the senior center beginning at 9 a.m.
The final vote was 241 in favor of keeping the land and 174 for allowing the option of a sale.
The land is part of a mostly forested 715-acre swath containing a former alternative town water reservoir. Those who advocated the sale claimed the state would have offered up to $1 million to buy the property and indefinite state payments in lieu of taxes of roughly $7,000 to $10,000 per year.
Those wanting to keep the property in the town’s possession, spearheaded by the Water Department, are attempting work with the Department of Conservation and Recreation to begin a feasibility study to test the site for wind development. Francis Waterman, of the Cheshire Water Department, claims long-term gains may be greater with development and to be seeking only “more time.”
In other election results, resident Gloria Lewis was elected to replace former Selectman Daniel Delorey on the board. She defeated challenger James Boyle 324 to 78.
The town also voted 239 to 160 in favor of purchasing a new $42,000 sander for the Highway Department.
Overall, the election featured a higher turnout than last year’s 127
with 379, but still represented only a fraction of the town’s roughly 1,900 registered voters.
Election Official Diane Hitter said voter turnout had been slow as of 2 p.m.
“We began at 9 a.m., and it’s been quite slow,” she said. “Possibly we’ll see an uptick coming here.”
Also elected, but running unopposed, were: Richard Salvi, Board of Health; Jack Girard, Cemetery Com mission; Patrick Klammer, water commissioner; Rebecca Herzog, tax collector; Christine Emerson, town clerk; Darlene Rodowicz, Adams-Cheshire Regional School District Committee (Cheshire); Stephen Vigna, Adams-Cheshire Regional School District Committee (Adams).
Gus Martin also received 66 write-in votes for assessor. Martin ran unopposed but did not appear on the ballot because his papers had been misplaced.
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