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Orange special town meeting tonight at 7

ORANGE — A special town meeting tonight will decide whether to apply some surplus school money to keep the town’s community development director job funded.

The job has been largely funded from federal Community Development Block Grant money in the past, but the town won’t get that grant for 2014. Town Administrator Diana Schindler says Community Development Director Kevin Kennedy’s position is important enough to fund through the local budget.

Town officials will propose keeping Kennedy’s position and the work he’s doing by using a surplus from the Mahar school assessment. Normally, the town receives approximately 80 percent reimbursement from the state for school busing, but this year has unexpectedly received 90 percent, leaving approximately $97,000 extra.

Kennedy works on projects like the Butterfield Park renovations and the sidewalk construction set to begin on West River Street.

After this year, Schindler would like to include Kennedy’s funding as part of the operating budget.

Also on the agenda for the special town meeting in the Ruth B. Smith Memorial Auditorium at 7 p.m. is a proposal to have the town approve the alteration and layout of East Road and accept the parcel of land in regard to the Tractor Supply plan.

Article 3 asks the town to transfer funds from Public Works to the Cemetery Department.

The last article asks the Board of Selectmen to oppose the Kinder Morgan/Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co., proposed to run through Franklin County.

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