There are several notable items that will be discussed during Antrim’s Town Meeting, including a slight increase to its operating budget, a warrant article that would authorize the town to acquire a conservation easement on a parcel of land as part of Antrim Wind Energy’s nine-turbine proposal, a veterans tax credit, and an article that would express widespread solidarity with people fighting against the Dakota Access Pipeline.
A contributing driver to the town’s operating-budget increase, is a rise in its police department’s budget, which is proposed to spike by about $18,500. That’s the result of a reshuffling of officers from five part-time officers to two part-time permanent positions.
Article 4 would authorize the town to acquire a conservation easement on about 100 acres of land as part of Antrim Wind Energy’s nine turbine wind project approved by the state’s Site Evaluation Committee late last year. AWE would be required to make a one-time payment of $10,000 for future monitoring of the property. The Antrim Conservation Commission has said it doesn’t want to be responsible for the easement due to potential costs of monitoring the land, which it says likely could reach beyond the $10,000 stipend that the energy company is offering. If the article is struck down by voters, AWE would have to find a third party to take over responsibility for the easement.
Article 15 would adopt provisions of RSA 72:28-b, an all veterans tax credit. If passed, the $500 credit would be available to any resident, or the spouse of any resident, who served no less than 90 days on active service in the U.S. armed forces and was honorably discharged or an officer honorably separated from services and is not eligible for receiving a credit under RSA 72:28 or 72:35.
Article 16, which was placed on the budget through the petition of at least 25 voters, would proclaim that the townspeople Stand With Standing Rock. The article says the builders of the Dakota Access Pipeline, also known as DAPL, have desecrated ancestral burial grounds on the Standing Rock Dakota Sioux tribal land and have threatened the drinking water of everyone downstream of the Missouri River. The article demands that state and federal elected officials stop disregarding the country’s laws and honor First Nation treaties.
Proposed Budget: $4,095,274
Last Year’s Budget: $4,013,926
Estimated Tax Rate: N/A
Last Year’s Municipal Tax Rate: $12.52
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