10 Things That Happened At Saturday’s Annual Town Meeting (Part 1 of 2)

WILMINGTON, MA — Here are TEN things that happened at the 2017 Wilmington Annual Town Meeting on Saturday, April 29, 2017:

#1) The town’s FY18 operating budget of $101,077,905 — plus $7,793,600 in additional capital requests & other warrant articles — were overwhelmingly supported by Wilmington voters.  (The operating budget reflects a 2.88% increase over FY17.) During the duration of the five-hour meeting, town officials received everything they proposed with no close votes. In fact, all votes were done via voice vote, with no standing votes even required.

#2) Voters approved a number of capital requests for new vehicles [Article 6], including:

  • five replacement police cruisers ($270,000)
  • a replacement animal control vehicle ($50,000)
  • a replacement ambulance ($320,000)
  • a heavy duty dump truck with plow and sander ($137,000)
  • a heavy duty one-tun utility body truck with plow ($70,000)
  • a pickup truck with plow ($38,500)
  • a tractor for the Parks & Grounds Division ($52,000)
  • a heavy duty tree chipper ($68,5000)
  • a Ford Escape to replace a 2011 Ford Crown Victoria for the Public Buildings Dept. ($24,100)
  • a Ford F150 pickup to replace a 1999 Ford Ranger for the Public Buildings Dept. ($27,000)
  • a replacement handicapped accessible van for the Elderly Services Department ($55,000)
  • a student transport van ($30,000)

#3) Voters approved several capital requests to improve the town’s technology infrastructure:

  • a shared storage environment between police and towner sever infrastructure ($45,000) [Article 7]
  • replacing approximately 20 network switches throughout the general government IT environment ($45,000) [Article 8]
  • replacing 25 computer work stations throughout the general government departments ($30,000) [Article 9]
  • three servers for town infrastructure and additional Vmware licenses ($15,000) [Article 10]

#4) In addition to the five replacement police cruisers, voters approved numerous capital requests related to the Wilmington Police Department:

  • Electronic Control Weapons (tasers) as part of the second year of a three-year plan ($32,500) [Article 11]
  • the installation of a high density storage system for the storage of evidence and property in possession of the Wilmington Police Department ($25,000) [Article 12]
  • a steel secure storage trailer for the new completed police firing rang  ($20,000) [Article 13]
  • a video security system to monitor the exterior of the Public Safety Building ($30,000) [Article 14]

#5) Voters supported more than 10 capital requests from the school department:

  • replacement of the building management system (HVAC and climate control) at the Wilmington Middle School ($35,000) [Article 15]
  • replacement of a chairlift at the Shawsheen Elementary School ($125,000) [Article 16]
  • replacement of approximately 14,215 square feet of roof at the North Intermediate School ($175,000) [Article 17]
  • reconstruction of the paved bus drop-off area and adjourning sidewalks at the North Intermediate School ($100,000) [Article 19]
  • replacement of workstations and software in the Middle School Technology Engineering Lab ($67,500) [Article 24]
  • replacement of 80 desktop computers at the elementary and early childhood schools ($72,000) [Article 25]
  • purchase 189 Chromebooks and 7 carts for the elementary schools and Middle School ($40,000) [Article 26]
  • replace approximately 400 laptop batteries throughout the school system ($30,000) [Article 30]
  • second phase of a three-phase project to purchase a Voice Over internet Protocol Phone System for Wilmington Public Schools ($50,000) [Article 27]
  • replacement of computer switches at the six elementary schools ($36,000) [Article 28]
  • replacement of the school department’s existing exchange server with a cloud-based email system ($25,000) [Article 29]

#6) Voters approved several infrastructure and roadway projects, including:

  • designing, constructing and reconstructing water mains on Middleex Avenue, from Glen Road to Federal Street ($275,000) [Article 31]
  • designing, constructing and reconstructing water mains on Ballardvale Street ($1,050,000) [Article 32]
  • phased reconstruction of walkways at the Town Common ($15,000) [Article 21]
  • two sets of solar powered flashing pedestrian beacons to be located at the Town Common, from the student parking lot to the Common, and from the Common to the high school. ($30,000) [Article 23]

Voters also approved the purchase and installation of a new heavy duty vehicle left in the Public Works mechanics’ garage. ($26,000) [Article 22]

#7) Voters agreed to set aside funds to help fund the town’s liabilities:

  • deposit $1,000,000 into the Other Post Employment Liability Trust Fund [Article 33]
  • deposit $500,000 into the town’s Employee Retirement Benefits Fund [Article 35]
  • pay $1,000,000 to the Middlesex Retirement System above the town’s annual assessment [Article 36]

Voters also agreed to deposit $3,000,000 into the town’s Capital Stabilization Fund and to transfer $350,000 to fund police overtime and various snow & ice removal lines.  [Article 34, 37]

#8) Voters showed its support of veterans and patriotism with several quick approvals:

  • town’s Fourth of July celebration ($25,000) [Article 38]
  • town’s Memorial Day & Veterans’ Day ceremonies ($6,000) [Article 39]
  • renewing the leases of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Clubhouse and the American Legion Clubhouse ($750 each) [Article 40]

#9) Voters approved $40,000 for the phased expansion of available burial spaces at the Wildwood Cemetery. [Article 20]

#10) Voters approved $526,000 to operate a Public Rink enterprise at Ristuccia Arena. That amount, however, remains a placeholder as any potential sale of the rink remains tied up in the courts. [Article 43]

MORE TO COME: Wilmington Apple will share another 10 Town Meeting highlights tomorrow.

(NOTE: The cover photo is from Wilmington Community Television.)

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One thought

  1. The taxpayers in town should focus in on article 36 and ask: why are the taxpayers having to pay $1,000,000 to the Middlesex retirement system above our annual assessment? Is this to bail out a casino- like investing model? Are we bailing these clowns out? I would think an annual assessment is arrived at with some represented financial commitment analysis. This seems very suspicious. WHY ARE PEOPLE IN WILMINGTON NOT OUTRAGED at the nonsense of our town officials? Could the town officials be setting Wilmington up for an economic collapse by over burdening our commercial and industrial tax base? What will happen if they cause a collapse to this base? I suspect the resident tax base will increase again. It was $9 per $1,000 and now it is way above that. At some point it destroys the real estate market. Wake up Wilmington voters and learn to say NO!

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