I have a brief update from Monday’s City Council meeting. We had our final department budget presentation, covering the Public Safety budget (Police, Fire, and Code). In short, we are planning no increases to these service areas beyond contractually obligated salary increases, and replacing some fire safety equipment at less than $10,000. Both the police and fire presentations included a lot of information on what our public safety staff do for the community. I recommend familiarizing yourself with this presentation. The presentation video can also be viewed via Town Meeting TV (see their linked agenda to skip ahead). We’ll have our final budget discussion on Tuesday, January 19, and then vote on the final budget and any Town Meeting Day ballot items on January 25. For full details, budget information, and past meetings (like Public Works, Community Services, and more) please visit https://www.winooskivt.gov/fy22. Your voices are important so please join or watch the meetings to understand how your tax dollars are being spent.
We also discussed the option of bringing commercial cannabis to Winooski now that the State is setting up a legal marketplace. We could ask voters on Town Meeting Day if they’d like to see retail cannabis in Winooski or we could choose to wait for a later date for this vote. Communities have to vote to opt into allowing commercial cannabis. Our discussion included questions about possible zoning changes or ordinances to ensure establishments don’t violate nuisance laws (like odor) or set up shop too close to a school. We heard from advocates who’d like to see this option available to support our local economy and local options tax revenue sooner than later, and from the Winooski Partnership for Prevention who shared concerns and reason to wait. What are your thoughts on commercial cannabis in Winooski? I’d love to hear them. View all of the info here.
I can also share that we continue to see cases of COVID-19 here in Winooski, though the number of new cases is not rising quite as rapidly as before so thank you for following the guidance of the CDC and Vermont Department of Health:
Monday is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a day we usually spend in service of our community. While we aren't able to gather for the typical community service efforts, there are still ways to help out. Learn more here.
Please do reach out with any thoughts on our budget, commercial cannabis, COVID response, or anything else on your mind.
Mayor Kristine Lott - firstname.lastname@example.org / 802 766 1988