• Montpelier rejects local option taxes
     | March 07,2012
    Jeb Wallace-Brodeur / Staff Photo

    Election clerks hand out ballots during Town Meeting on Tuesday in Montpelier.

    MONTPELIER — Montpelier residents said yes to just about everything on Tuesday, except the two local option taxes, approving 39 of the 41 ballot items, and rejecting one incumbent city councilor.

    Thierry Guerlain defeated longtime District 2 City Councilor Nancy Sherman. Guerlain received 61 percent, or 574 votes, of the 945 total votes, to Sherman’s 371. Alan Weiss and Andy Hooper were unopposed and re-elected to the council.

    John Odum beat Michael Marinelli to become Montpelier’s next city clerk by a vote of 1204-1086.

    John Hollar ran uncontested to become the mayor.

    The only articles defeated by voters were the two local option taxes.

    Sixty-seven percent of voters rejected the 1 percent retail sales tax, and 53 percent said no to the 1 percent rooms, meals and alcohol tax.

    Voters approved the $870,000 bond to pay for infrastructure and equipment expenses, which includes a new fire truck, street rehabilitation and retaining wall repairs.

    Voters also said yes to making it more difficult to petition to get an article on the Town Meeting Day ballot by doubling the number of signatures required to put an article up for a vote.

    Now any group or organization requesting money from Montpelier taxpayers will need to get signatures from 10 percent, rather than 5 percent, of registered Montpelier voters.

    Obviously, the City Council could handle these requests for funding through the normal budget process, as is the case with Montpelier Alive. Doing so could reduce the number of articles voters are expected to decide upon on Town Meeting Day.

    Tuesday’s ballot was three pages long.

    Voters also gave Green Mountain Transit Agency’s Circulator bus another year by approving the $40,000 in funding.

    keith.vance@ timesargus.com

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