$13.78M budget, 31 articles on tap at town meeting; Voters to act on debt exclusion.


Byline: Sandy Meindersma

RUTLAND - Voters will tackle 31 articles, including a $13.78 million budget and a residents' petition to elect an independent water and sewer board, at the annual town meeting tomorrow night.

Other articles include a proposal to purchase the site of the former Rutland Heights Hospital for $544,000 through a debt exclusion. Thomas Dufault, of the town's Development and Industrial Commission, said the property was originally valued at $655,000, but a revised appraisal came in lower.

The spending proposal for fiscal 2009, which includes $6,584,794 for the Wachusett Regional School District, is approximately $10,000 less than the fiscal 2008 budget.

Joseph R. Becker, chairman of the Board of Selectmen, said the decrease in spending comes in spite of a 4 percent increase in the school budget as well as increases in fuel costs.

The selectmen oversee the Water and Sewer departments. If the article presented by resident George P. Kiritsy passes, an independent board would be elected by ballot.

In another article, $4,000 is requested from the Watershed Protection Land Preservation Fund to determine the feasibility of placing an agricultural preservation restriction on the Johnson property at 255 Pleasantdale Road.

Five zoning articles on the warrant include...

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