West County Notebook
Voter registration in Shelburne and Buckland
SHELBURNE FALLS — This year’s state primary election takes place on Sept. 9, and state law requires that anyone who wants to vote for gubernatorial candidates must register to vote in their hometown by Aug. 20. Like other town clerk offices statewide, the Buckland and Shelburne town clerks will hold special voter registration hours that day from 2 to 4 p.m. and from 7 to 8 p.m. in their respective town halls.
The Buckland Town Hall is located at 17 State St. in Shelburne Falls, for residents living on that side of the river.
The Shelburne town offices are located in Memorial Hall at 51 Bridge St. on the Shelburne side of the village.
HAWLEY — Also, the Hawley Town Clerk will hold special voter registration on Aug. 20 for the Sept. 9 state primary. Special voter registration hours are 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 8 p.m. in the Town Office on Pudding Hollow Road.
Flanders new Shelburne planner
SHELBURNE — Will Flanders of Mechanic Street has been appointed to fill a vacancy on the Planning Board, until the next annual town election. He is replacing former Planning Board member Beth Simmons.
Buckland highway garage negotiations
BUCKLAND — The Board of Selectmen met in executive session Tuesday night, citing the state law that allows boards to meet in a closed-door session to discuss negotiation positions over a possible Town Highway facility purchase.
The town has been looking for a new highway garage site since 2008, when the building inspector closed the old crumbling facility. Earlier in the evening, the board agreed to schedule a special town meeting for Sept. 25 and hinted that the garage issue could be on the special meeting warrant.
Stickers or trash bags for Buckland?
BUCKLAND — Stickers or plastic trash bags? Selectmen voted 2-1 to stick with 33-gallon town trash bags for now, but to consider moving to a trash-bag sticker in future years, to hold down the town’s trash costs. Town Administrator Andrea Llamas told selectmen that the town has received residents’ complaints that the town bags are too thin, and that some people are double-bagging the large trash bags to ensure they don’t break.
She said moving to a sticker system could save the town about $7,000 in trash-bag costs and reduce the amount of plastic in the town’s waste-stream, since residents could buy their own trash bags.
Selectman Cheryl L. Dukes thought the town should investigate the cost of going to sturdier bags. Selectmen’s Chairman Kevin Fox said that residents who double-bag smaller kitchen trash bags into the large bags would have an additional costs for buying bags AND trash stickers.
Because the town’s supply of large trash bags are likely to run out in September, the board majority voted to keep the status quo, and research changing its system later.
Burial fee waived
SHELBURNE — Death and taxes may be inevitable, but a burial permit fee is not. Town Clerk Joseph Judd said he is waiving the town’s $5 burial permit fee because the time-consuming paperwork to process the paperwork is more costly than the fee itself.