Friday, October 28, 2011

Cavendish Update 10/28/11 SB/Snarski/Events/News

Information can also be posted on the Cavendish VT Facebook Page

The 10/27/11 Cavendish Update Contains:
1. Select Board Meeting 10/24/11
2. Sophie Snarski 1916-2011
3. Cavendish Related News
4. Cavendish Calendars Now On Sale
5. Scholastic Bookfair comes to Cavendish
6. Update on Gethsemane Episcopal Church
7. Vermont Properties and Development Coat Drive
8. Cavendish Semiquincentennial: Cavendish Halloween
9. Application for BRGNS Holiday Program Available
10. Cavendish Events 10/28-11/4

1. Select Board Meeting 10/24/11
Monday night’s Select Board meeting began with a site visit to 53 Depot Street. On Oct. 21, a “Notice of Hearing on a Health Order Relating to a Derelict Building” was issued to the owner Dean Kauppinen, by the Town of Cavendish Board of Health. In the notice, it was noted that “The subject building has previously been the subject of numerous prior citizen complaints to the Board of Selectmen and the Town Health officer for issues such as:
1. Fire Hazard;
2. Holes and openings to the structure, which afforded points of entry for vermin, rodents, pigeons and other birds;
3. Attractive nuisance to neighborhood children especially when potential openings for entry are in evidence;
4. Potential collapse hazard, and
5. Blight upon the neighborhood

Eight years ago, owners of the North Country Condominiums at 51 and 55 Depot Street, began the process of trying to get the town to address the derelict building that sits between the two condominiums. Owners have complained about their inability to obtain insurance because of the building and now how the recent flood has made it worst. The owner, Kauppinen, has taken no satisfactory measures to eliminate the problem. Consequently, The complainants have petitioned the Cavendish Board of Health to take summary action to eliminate the health and safety problems by condemning the building and requiring its immediate removal.

During the hearing that followed the site visit, a number of the condo owners were present and pressed the select board to take some action to eliminate the continuing problem. Rich Svec, town manager and Cavendish health officer, indicated that there was no zoning ordinance to help condemn the building. However, he has been in contact with the state Fire Marshall, who will be conducting a site visit and does have authorization to take action.

Many of the condo owners present had significant damage from the flood, and as they began repairs, encountered any number of building code violations from the original construction by Kauppinen. One of their major concerns is why rebuild if the problems continue with 53 Depot Street. “If the town doesn’t want to invest in us, why should I continue to invest,” noted one owner. Others described a “perfect storm” of reasons for “walking away:” major damage from flooding, significant code violations, a derelict building adjacent to their property, and increased taxes. It was noted that given these circumstance, the town could end up with three derelict buildings and not just one.

Svec said that a health order, calling for the building to be boarded up and tapped off could be done as a stop gap measure, since children are entering the building. When asked, three of the four select board members present indicated that the building should be condemned and torn down. The fourth, chairmen James Ballentine, said it was bad, but didn’t know if it was bad enough to be condemned. Other members were quite clear that until the site visit they had no idea how bad it actually was. When asked if the Cavendish Board of Health has the ability to condemn, Svec said he needed to talk to the town’s lawyer and the head of the VT Dept. of Health. The question is “where is the burden of proof about safety?”

The Select Board agreed to look at passing a derelict building ordinance before the end of the year, which becomes enforceable 60 days from its passing. This will continue to be an agenda item until it is resolved.

The Board was also appraised of recent Irene recovery activities. These included:
• A site visit from FEMA. Cavendish is one of the 10 worst towns hit by the storm and they wanted to do what they could to see that money gets to the town as quickly as possible. The indication is that money should arrive before the holidays.

• The Board voted to approve a line of credit with Mascoma Savings for 1% interest. This is lower than the current line of credit. While FEMA will reimburse expenses, it does not pay interest fees.

• Cavendish was issued a violation by the Agency of Natural Resources, when workers were found on Brook repairing a river bed. Svec explained that he had made met with the state’s Stream Alteration Engineer four weeks prior, who had given verbal approval to the Brook Rd project and other such activities throughout the town. However, because he hadn’t provided this in writing, so that the workers would have it in hand, the town was cited. Svec was finally able to reach the state’s engineer, who like everyone else is heavily burdened. However, he did come by with a written order and has spoken with the Agency of Natural Resources. It is expected that the violation will be dropped. As noted in last week’s Cavendish Update,, . "In order to do work in the river not only do you need permission from the river engineer, but you need it in writing. So we got folks out there who are talking to people who are working in the river to make sure they're doing it with permission," said Deb Markowitz, the secretary of the Agency of Natural Resources

2. Sophie Snarski 1916-2011
Known for her love of Cavendish, Sophie was actually born in Racine, WI, to parents who had immigrated to the United States from Poland. Moving to Cavendish when she was three, Sophie held a number of positions-fiddler, town auditor, “drawing in girl” for Gay Brothers Mill, member of the Holy Name of Mary Altar Society and the Cavendish Historical Society, and most notably postmaster of the Cavendish post office from 1975 to the early 1990’s. It was in this position that many came to know her as match maker, source of all things local and much more. Her funeral will be held on Friday Oct. 28 at 10 am at Holy Name of Mary Church in Proctorsville. Her obituary is on-line.

3. Cavendish Related News
Federal Aid to VT Tops $34M: Individuals and families have received more than $18.5 million in grants for housing repairs, rent for temporary housing and other assistance. More than $16.1 million in low-interest disaster recovery loans has been approved for homeowners and businesses by the U.S. Small Business Administration. Press Release

New FEMA Floodmaps Could Cost Homeowners: FEMA wants Vermont homeowners to know that spring flooding and summer storms did not spark changes to flood plain maps across the state. "The flood mapping program and the modernization upgrading of the maps started long before Hurricane Irene and spring flooding," said David Mendelsohn with FEMA. FEMA says homeowners can challenge changes to the maps, but redrawing lines will take more than proof of a dry basement. "If they have scientific or technical information to show that they are outside the special flood hazard area or above the base flood elevation, then FEMA will work with them to remove their structure from the federal flood hazard area," Mendelsohn said. WXAX

VT Tied for the Fifth Lowest Unemployment rate in country is deceiving: The stats means roughly one in 20 Vermont workers are unemployed, but when you add in the underemployed or part-time workers who are seeking full-time employment, and discouraged workers -- people who have given up looking -- that ratio is closer to one in 10 Vermonters who are struggling economically. WCAX

VT Road Repairs Continuing, but Perils Remain: Initial repairs to Vermont's road network damaged by flooding from Tropical Storm Irene are nearly finished as the state prepares for its snowy season, yet many of the fixes were done quickly and engineers don't know how they'll hold up through the winter and spring, an official said Tuesday. Burlington Free Press

FEMA Says VT Doesn’t Need Temporary Housing Units: Temporary housing units brought to Vermont in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Irene by the Federal Emergency Management Agency were not needed and have been sent elsewhere, an official said Thursday. WCAX

Will Irene Repairs Stand Up to Winter: State and local highway crews have repaired hundreds of washouts since the storm's flood waters devastated the state at the end of August. Much of the work is considered temporary -- aimed at getting roads passable to reconnect communities. And as the state prepares for winter snow and spring, engineers don't know how the repairs will hold up. Transportation officials are warning travelers to be cautious of changing conditions in areas that have been under construction. WCAX

Q & A Jessica and Craig Goodman American Pie Restaurant in Ludlow (VT Business Magazine): The Goodman’s live in Proctorsville Insurancenewsnet

4. Cavendish Calendars Now On Sale
The Cavendish Community and Conservation Association has announced that the new 2012 calendars are now on sale just in time for holiday giving. The calendars can be purchased at Crow’s Bakery in Proctorsville or at the Cavendish Town Offices on High Street. All calendar sales proceeds go to support the work of the Association. Again this year the calendars feature beautiful and colorful pictures of Cavendish scenes. All pictures were taken by Cavendish photographers, highlighting the beauty of our various landscapes, historic heritage, animals and people. These are the contest winning photos that the public picked last spring. Anyone living in the Cavendish area would find one of these calendars a useful and artistic addition to a kitchen or office. They also make great holiday gifts, especially to those who just wish they lived in Vermont! Calendars cost $10. For more information call Robin Timko at 226-7736.

5. Scholastic Bookfair comes to Cavendish
The Cavendish Fletcher Community Library will be hosting its annual fall bookfair October 31 through November 4 in the library during normal open hours. The bookfair will feature a selection of books for all age ranges and for the first time will include an online component. The online bookfair will allow shoppers a greater selection of books, including those for adults and can be accessed through the library website. FMI: Kata at 226-7503.

6. Update on Gethsemane Episcopal Church
After meetings with a structural engineer, the town, insurance company, the diocese, the Vermont Preservation Trust, the construction company, and members of the church, all are agreed that reconstruction of the church should proceed as quickly as possible. Work will begin by jacking up the church so that the existing foundation can be removed and a new, more flood-resistant foundation will be poured. While these issues were being resolved, the church also met with an architect who has drawn up plans for a new parish hall to be located attached to the rear of the church, and a landscape architect who is drawing up plans which will include a handicap ramp as well as new front steps. The members of the church wish to thank everyone who has volunteered their time and talents to make all this possible. This Saturday, a large group of young people will arrive from San Lucas church in Chelsea MA to clean and level the grounds behind the church so it will be ready to seed.

7. Vermont Properties and Development Coat Drive
Vermont Properties and Development of Ludlow is holding a winter coat drive to benefit Black River Good Neighbor Services. Anyone who can, bring an outer garment that is clean and in good condition to: Vermont Properties and Development, 29 Locust Hill Road, Ludlow. Garments will be accepted from now until November 27th from 9am to 5pm. On Saturday, December 3rd, as recognition of the wonderful community support shown by Vermont Properties in organizing this coat drive BRGNS will have a rack of winter coats that will go to those in need in our community without charge. FMI: 802-228-8877

8. Cavendish Semiquincentennial: Cavendish Halloween These posts are made possible by the Cavendish Historical Society and are archived at the CHS Blog.

Since Oct. 31 is just a few days away, we’ve included excerpts from Sandra Stearns book, “Cavendish Hillside Farm 1939 to 1957,” about her memories of Halloween at the Center Road School House.

Each year, the Center School had a Halloween party. Our greatest joy was to be invited to Cliff and Marion Johnson’s home to explore their attic looking for our attire. High button shoes, red flannelled long johns and dresses and hats from years ago were abundant there. Marion was always good for a unique costume herself. An unknown student always appeared and only by the process of elimination and observance of a missing person were we able to identify her.

Corks were burned and rubbed on our hands and faces to darken them. Lipstick was used liberally and we wore it for days before it washed off completely. Pillows were stuffed everywhere in our costumes making humped backs, roly-poly bellies, extreme fannies and bouncing cleavages. We wore our dads’ boots and shoes, the bigger the better. Our teacher, Mrs. Pickard, often dressed up as a gypsy and would tell our fortunes by the lines in our palms. Costumes were judged and prizes were awarded.

Apples were floated in a large tub of water and we bobbed for them. Faces were dunked under the water, trying to push the apple to the bottom, where we would be able to get it between our teeth and rise triumphant with our prize. The best way to snare the apple was that way, but much time was spent turning it into just the position you wanted. Usually it promptly rolled back whatever way it wanted as soon as your hands were eliminated from helping. Apples or donuts were suspended from the ceiling by strings. Our hands were tied behind our backs and we attempted to consume the dangling food as it swung back and forth. It was a neighborhood party and everyone, young and old, was involved.
To read more “Ghosts and Goblins” go to the CHS Blog.

Copies of "Cavendish Hillside Farm 1939 to 1957" are available from the Cavendish Historical Society for $15 a copy plus $5 for shipping and handling. Checks should be made payable to CHS and mailed to CHS, PO Box 472, Cavendish, VT 05142.

9. Application for BRGNS Holiday Program Available Now
The staff of the Black River Good Neighbor Services wants everyone to know that they are accepting applications for the 2011 Christmas Basket program. Anyone living in Ludlow, Proctorsville, Cavendish, Mount Holly, Belmont or Plymouth who feels they qualify need only to stop by the shop at 37B Main Street, Ludlow, to pick up an application. Anyone unable to get to the store please call Audrey Bridge at 228-3663 for assistance. Completed applications must be submitted by November 25th, 2011. Baskets will be delivered on Thursday, December 22nd. Families that received a basket last year will receive a phone call from a BRGNS volunteer and do not need to make a new application this year. However anyone who has had a change of address and/or phone number should contact the office.

10. Cavendish Events 10/28-11/4
October 29 (Saturday): Dylan Tenney Magic Illusion & Hypnosis Show at Cavendish Town Elementary School for shows at 2pm & 7pm. Tickets are $5 at the door. 50/50 raffle, concessions, and T-shirt sale. The proceeds benefit the Proctorsville Vol Fire Dept.
• Take Back Prescriptions Day: The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s third National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day will officially open collection sites throughout Vermont from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The closest sites for Cavendish are as follows: Ludlow Police Dept; Weathersfield Transfer Station; Springfield Police Dept; and the Windsor Police Dept. To learn more about the proper disposal of drugs go to Healing Whole.

October 31 (Monday): HAPPY HALLOWEEN The Golden Stage Inn’s new owners are keeping the Halloween haunted house tradition alive. This year’s theme is “The Guests that Never Left.” Things get underway by 6:00 and will be concluding by 8:30. It’s a school night.

November 1 (Tuesday): Bone Builders Class at the Cavendish Baptist-- Class from 10:15-11:45. FMI: Linda at Green Mountain RSVP & Volunteer Center of Windsor County at (802) 885-2083, or Anne Oakes or Andrew Ohotnicky at (802) 228-5236, Dot Ramsdell at (802) 226-7870 or Charlotte Snyder (802) 226-7343
• Scholastic Bookfair at the Cavendish library. FMI: 226-7503
• Paying for College Presentation by the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation (VSAC), 6:30 pm at the GMUHS library.

November 2 (Wednesday): Planning Commission Meeting 6:30 pm at the Cavendish Town Office
• Scholastic Bookfair at the Cavendish library. FMI: 226-7503

November 3 (Thursday): Bone Builders Class at the Cavendish Baptist-- Class from 10:15-11:45. FMI: Linda at Green Mountain RSVP & Volunteer Center of Windsor County at (802) 885-2083, or Anne Oakes or Andrew Ohotnicky at (802) 228-5236, Dot Ramsdell at (802) 226-7870 or Charlotte Snyder (802) 226-7343
• Sit & Knit" at the Six Loose Ladies yarn shop, Pollard Building, Proctorsville Green, 2:00 -9:00 PM. Open to knitters, spinners, crocheters, hookers. Free. FMI: 226-7373
• Scholastic Bookfair at the Cavendish library. FMI: 226-7503

November 4 (Friday): Last day of the Scholastic Bookfair at the Cavendish library. FMI: 226-7503

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