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Money talk in Erving Monday

Gas pipeline discussion postponed

ERVING — A special town meeting on Monday will address a number of financial decisions, spending $320,000 from the sum raised but not used this fiscal year, but will not weigh in on the Kinder Morgan pipeline. Earlier planned for the June special town meeting, that discussion has been delayed.

Town Administrator Thomas Sharp said he has so far been unable to arrange a visit from company representatives to answer questions about the proposed pipeline, but is hopeful there will be a public meeting in July.

A handful of Erving and neighboring residents brought their concerns about the Kinder Morgan/Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. natural gas pipeline, which may pass through the county and the town, to the Board of Selectmen in May. Some asked the board to impose a moratorium on the pipeline.

What will be discussed Monday is spending.

The largest figure on the agenda is $125,000 toward the expense of the Northfield Mountain Project tax appraisal. Assistant Assessor Jacquelyn Boyden said the triennial re-valuation is scheduled for 2015 and the fund for the work, bid out to contractors due to the specialized nature of the facility, is running low. The Northfield Mountain Pumped Storage Project is the foundation of Erving’s tax base — close to 85 percent of the taxes raised, Boyden said — keeping the local residential property tax rate among the lowest in the state.

The money is requested as a continuing appropriation, meaning it will be available in future years rather than being returned to surplus at the end of the fiscal year, according to Sharp.

Also requested as continuing appropriations are $10,000 for the Pearl B. Care Historic Museum, reopened to the public last year; $10,000 for the maintenance, removal or replacement of trees fund; and $25,000 to explore the feasibility of a public water system in Erving Center.

Sharp said the study is for a public water system along East Main Street, with a quote of 5 years and $5 million dollars for construction of a skeleton system along that section of Route 2, which he said would benefit homes and businesses and provide water to fight fires.

Voters at the Monday meeting will also be asked to approve the use of $50,000 to re-side the Town Hall and replace the roofing below the windows, $60,000 for the replacement of two emergency generators at the sewer pump stations on Arch and River streets, a total of $25,000 for skids, a trailer and a cab for the Fire Department’s Gator all-terrain vehicle, $2,000 for GPS units for the Fire Department and $13,000 for a fire hose and gear dryer.

All money requested is to be spent from the annual surplus.

The meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. in the Town Hall, 12 East Main Street.

You can reach Chris Curtis at: ccurtis@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 257

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