2018 Stockbridge Annual Town Meeting

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STOCKBRIDGE — With the town rated as "strong" in management, and an AA+ rating for its existing and new bonds by S&P Global, the town budget is not expected to be a flashpoint this year. Potential hot-button issues — including an adult-use retail marijuana zoning policy and a possible short-term Airbnb home rental bylaw — have been deferred until the fall. The fate of the $150 million mixed-use lodging and residential proposal by 37 Interlaken at the former DeSisto Estate remains unresolved.

When: 6:30 p.m. Monday, May 21

Where: Stockbridge Town Offices gymnasium, 50 Main St.

Budget:

Fiscal 2019: $12.15 million   Increase: 3.6 percent

Expenses:

$2.92 million: Berkshire Hills Regional School District

$224,750: Ambulance service

$250,000: Church Street repaving

The Top Issues

Traffic safety study

The town is evaluating several proposals to study traffic and pedestrian safety downtown, at the four-way Route 7, 102 and Pine Street intersection, the Vine Street and Route 7 Intersection, and at crosswalks along Main Street. Voters will be asked to approve an additional $10,000 — beyond the $15,000 raised at a special town meeting on Jan. 22 — for the study. The warrant article may be withdrawn at this Monday's annual town meeting if the additional funding is not required, based on the bids received.

PILOT program for non-profits

A committee was organized by the Select Board to explore a voluntary program for payments in lieu of taxes for 157 tax-exempt properties, especially eying 30 non-profit organizations with high profiles in town. Voters are asked to support a non-binding resolution to place a referendum on the Nov. 6 election ballot to establish a PILOT program. Also on the warrant is a request for $5,000 to support further research on the issue this summer.

Clarence Fanto can be reached at cfanto@yahoo.com and 413-637-2551.

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