Rindge voters pass district dissolution study, funds for full-time library position

  • Rindge residents Aaron and Amanda Wiley campaigned Tuesday for a petition article that will raise $8,000 to make a town library position full-time. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—

  • Rindge residents held signs for various candidates and to support warrant articles during Tuesday's election. March 12, 2019 Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Wednesday, March 13, 2019 3:32PM

Rindge voters supported petition warrant articles asking for a school district dissolution study and making a library position full-time at the polls on Tuesday.

Voters supported an article asking the Jaffrey-Rindge School District to study the feasibility and suitability of dissolving the school district by a vote of 620 to 431, with some wanting more information about the potential impacts should a dissolution be proposed in a future year.

“Jaffrey has to start paying more,” resident Pam Shuel said. “[This study] will hopefully show Jaffrey what it would be like without us.”

The closest vote on the ballot was to raise $8,000 for the 2019 library budget to make the youth librarian position full-time for the second half of 2019.

Despite many people holding signs outside Rindge Memorial School on Tuesday, the article barely passed by a vote of 542 to 516.

“I think it’s a good deal, $8,000 for a half year to get a qualified individual,” resident Al Lefebvre said. “It’s all about the kids.”

Three petition articles were voted down Tuesday – to allow Keno in town, to raise $2,500 to support the Contoocook Lake Area Preservation Association, and to increase the optional veteran’s tax credit for service-connected total disability from $2,000 to $4,000 – as was an article asking for $50,000 for the town’s highway department equipment capital reserve account.

Voters also approved to take up to $145,000 from the town’s Electric Light Trust Fund for emergency generators at the highway garage, town office, recreation center building, and meeting house. The article received 61.5 percent of the vote, needing at least 60 percent to pass.

Voters approved the town’s $4.1 million operating budget, $90,000 for the second payment for the fire department’s engine one, and all other articles on the warrant.

“I’m in favor of most of the warrant articles, especially the ones not costing the town any money,” resident Holly Koski said.

Many of the articles asking for equipment did not have a tax impact, as money will be taken from the town’s unassigned fund balance.

Karl J. Pruter was elected to the Select Board over competitor Tom Coneys, receiving 551 votes to Coney’s 455.

“He’s good, honest, and will make the board friendly again,” Shuel said. “It’s been unfriendly for many years.”

Kim McCummings and Holly Koski have been elected to the Planning Board, defeating Jeffrey Montuori and John Anderson by a comfortable margin.

“I’m pleased that [McCummings] is coming back to the board,” resident Anne Thomas said. “She has wrapped up controversial meetings in the past well.”

With 488 and 468 votes, Philip Motta and Daniel Whitney defeated Don Cook and James Burger II, who received 423 and 198 votes respectively.

The following people were elected to positions in uncontested races: Burton E. Goodrich Jr. was elected to a three-year seat as a cemetery trustee, Florence March and Lisa B. Wiley were elected to three-year seats as library trustees, Sarah J. Dengler will serve three-years as a trustee of the trust funds, and Marcia S. Breckenridge and Cynthia S. Childs were elected to three-year terms on the zoning board of adjustment.

Nicholas Handy can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 235 or nhandy@ledgertranscript.com.