Recently, the city manager brought to our attention a need to repair the chiller in the BOR; In short, the ability for the BOR to make ice for the season is up in the air. To move forward, the Council either has to approve an unbudgeted expense of $100,000, with no idea of what future repairs may look like, or lose this next season, with the thought being that we need to take a long look at the future of the BOR as a community resource, and how we use that space.
Here, I am asking for help. In my mind, it makes the most sense to save the $100,000 and have that difficult conversation about what we are going to look like as a community moving forward. Demographic and cultural trends are demanding that we cannot continue with the way we have been operating. I see this as an opportunity to expand our community; We could partner with Montpelier for use of their recreation center, which has more variability than the BOR does. A regional recreational partnership was mentioned offhand in Council, and I think that is the way for us to go.
On the other hand, I believe strongly in tight communities with good resources; If the citizens of Barre believe strongly in saving the BOR, and are organized, I don’t feel comfortable standing in the way of that.
So I ask; What would you do?
Edward "Teddy" Waszazak