FY 24 ATM Warrant with Finance Committee Recommendations

The Finance Committee met on May 22, 2023 and voted their recommendations on each article appearing on the FY 24 ATM Warrant

TOWN OF COLRAIN

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Annual Town Meeting Warrant

Fiscal Year 2024

FRANKLIN SS:

To either of the Constables of the Town of Colrain in the County of Franklin.

GREETINGS:

In the name of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, you are hereby directed to notify and warn the inhabitants of said town, qualified to vote on town affairs, to meet at the Colrain Town Office grounds, located at 55 Main Road at 5:30 PM in said town on Tuesday the thirteenth day in June 2023, there and then to act on the following articles:

ARTICLE #1. To see if the Town will instruct the Town Clerk to report on the election of officers and ballot questions as follows:

Select Board Member 3 years

Assessor 3 years

Library Trustees 3 years

Library Trustees 3 years

Constable 3 years

Mohawk Trail RSD School Committee Member 3 years

ARTICLE #2. To hear reports of various Town Officers and act thereon or pass any vote or votes thereto.

The Finance Committee makes no recommendation regarding this article.

ARTICLE #3. To see if the Town will vote to fix the salaries of Compensation of Elected Officers of the Town, as provided by MGL Chapter 4l, section l08 as amended; the salaries or compensations for the period of July l, 2023 – June 30, 2024, are as follows, or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto:

Voted

Proposed

FY 2023

FY 2024

Select Board, Chair

$3,461

$3,600

Select Board, Clerk

$3,461

$3,600

Select Board, Member

$3,461

$3,600

Moderator

$110

$114

Town Clerk

$24,150

$25,116

Board of Assessors, Chair

$3,447

$3,585

Board of Assessors, Member

$3,447

$3,585

Board of Assessors, Member

$3,447

$3,585

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #4. To see if the Town will vote to make the following appropriations to fund the Town Operating Budget and raise by taxation, or otherwise provide, the required amounts, or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto:

VOTED

PROPOSED

FY 2023

FY 2024

General Government:

Selectboard Wages

10,384

10,800

Selectboard Expenses

$1,000

$1,000

Town Administrator Wages

$89,250

$95,000

Town Counsel

$10,000

$10,000

Town Administrator Expenses

$500

$500

Administrative Assistant Wages

30,141

31,150

Town Office Maintenance Expenses

$15,400

$17,900

Professional Development

$500

$500

Office Expense

$29,376

$40,770

Town Telephone

$4,500

$4,500

Custodian Wages

$6,241

$6,491

Town Reports and Ballots

$800

$800

Advertising Expense

$1,000

$1,000

Annual Independent Audit

$16,000

$16,000

Town Accountant Fee

$21,949

$25,200

Accounting Software Expense

$3,970

$3,970

Total General Government:

$241,011

$265,581

Town Clerk:

Town Clerk Wages

$24,150

$25,116

Town Clerk Expenses

$6,365

$5,615

Election Expenses

$4,431

$4,466

Total Town Clerk:

$34,946

$35,197

Police Department:

Police Wages

$106,825

$110,900

Police Office Expenses

$1,800

$1,800

Police Training Expenses

$6,000

$6,000

Police Equipment Expenses

$15,535

$16,835

Police Cruiser Expenses

$10,820

$11,500

Total Police Department:

$140,980

$147,035

Fire Department:

Fire Department Wages

$70,950

$77,150

Fire Pumper Maintenance and Equipment Expenses

$44,650

$45,150

Fire House Maintenance

$19,300

$21,000

Total Fire Department:

$134,900

$143,330

Emergency Management:

Emergency Management Wages

$1,920

$1,997

Emergency Management Expenses

$2,700

$2,700

Total Emergency Management:

$4,620

$4,697

Building Inspector Department:

Building inspector Wages

$9,371

$9,746

Building Inspector Expenses

$200

$200

Inspection Software

$3,445

$3,445

Inspector Certification

$870

$870

Total Building Inspector Department:

$13,886

$14,261

Highway Department:

Highway Department Wages

$267,682

$286,693

General Highway Maintenance

$121,300

$121,300

Machinery Maintenance

$43,000

$43,000

Bridges

$2,000

$2,000

Gasoline, Diesel, and Oil

$65,800

$65,800

CDL Drug Testing

$2,000

$2,000

Winter Roads

$86,401

$86,400

Streetlights

$5,500

$5,500

Highway Garage Maintenance

$20,900

$20,900

Total Highway Department:

$614,583

$633,593

Assessors Department:

Assessor’s Wages

$10,341

$10,755

Director of Assessing Wages

$44,188

$44,287

Assessor’s Expenses

$17,130

$19,080

Total Assessor’s Department:

$71,659

$74,122

Treasurer/Collector:

Treasurer/Collector Wages

$63,630

$65,520

Treasurer/Collector Expenses

$18,764

$23,110

Tax Title Expense

$0

$10,000

Tax Foreclosure Custodian Expense

$10,000

$5,000

Total Treasurer/Collector:

$92,394

$103,630

Board of Health:

Board of Health Wages

$2,500

$2,600

Board of Health Expenses

$6,500

$500

Total Board of Health:

$9,000

$3,100

Animal Inspector Department:

Inspector Of Animals Wages

$1,200

$1,500

Inspector of Animals Expense

$200

$200

Total Animal Inspector Department:

$1,400

$1,700

Library Department:

Library Wages

$50,582

$53,972

Library Expenses

$43,330

$43,099

Total Library Department:

$93,912

$97,071

Council on Aging Expenses

$20,000

$20,000

Transfer Station Department:

Transfer Station Wages

$21,622

$22,486

Transfer Station Expenses

$74,598

$79,112

Total Transfer Station Department:

$96,220

$101,598

Unclassified Expenses:

Moderator

110

114

Moderator Expenses

$60

60

Tree Warden

$56

$0

Veterans Benefits

$7,500

$0

Memorial Day

$700

$1,000

Cemetery Maintenance

$800

$1,100

Property/Liability Insurance

$59,250

$61,000

Board/Committee Clerical Wages

$2,387

$2,483

Group Ins/Medi/SUI - Town Share

$149,357

$163,240

Personnel Committee Expenses

$100

$100

Planning Board Expenses

$1,000

$1,000

Finance Committee Expenses

$330

$330

School Committee Stipends

$900

$900

Reserve Fund

$2,000

$2,000

Conservation Commission Expenses

$100

$100

Historic Commission Expenses

$100

$100

Total Unclassified Expenses:

$224,750

$233,527

Total

$1,794,261

$1,878,412

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #5. To see if the Town will vote pursuant to the provisions of Section 53E1/2 of Chapter 44 of the Massachusetts General Laws, to authorize the establishment of revolving funds for certain town departments for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2023 with specific receipts credited to each fund, the purposes for which each fund may be spent and the maximum that may be spent from each fund for the fiscal year as follows:

Revolving Fund Title

Authorized to Spend Fund

Revenue Source

Use of Fund

FY24 Spending Limit

Disposition of FY23 Fund Balance

Plumbing Inspector

Plumbing Inspector

Plumbing Permit Fees and Applications

Reimburse Inspector for Inspection Services

$3,500.00

Balance Available for Expenditure in 2024

Health Inspector

Health Inspectors

Board of Health Permit Fees and Applications

Reimburse Inspectors for Inspection Services

$5,000.00

Balance Available for Expenditure in 2024

Electrical Inspector

Electrical Inspector

Electrical Permit Fees and Applications

Reimburse Inspector for Inspection Services

$3,500.00

Balance Available for Expenditure in 2024

Fire Inspector

Fire Department Inspectors

Fire Permit Fees and Applications

Reimburse Inspectors for Inspection Services

$3,500.00

Balance Available for Expenditure in 2024

Dog Fund

Town Clerk, Dog Officer,

and Select Board

Dog License Fees and Other Charges as Provided by Chapter 40, S 147A.

Offset Expenses Related to Administration of licenses and other Animal Control Matters

$15,000.00

Balance Available for Expenditure in 2024

Demolition Fund

Board of Health and Building Inspector

Receipts from demolition liens, municipal abatement liens and related insurance reimbursements including court orders.

For purposes associated with demolition, boarding and securing, and abating public health nuisances related to abandoned properties as determined by the Board of Health or Building Inspector.

$20,000.00

Balance Available for Expenditure in 2024

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #6. To see if the town will vote to authorize the Select Board to apply for, accept, and expend any state or federal grants that may become available, or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #7. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate the sum of $26,150 to be used for Interest and Fees on Short-Term Indebtedness or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #8. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $287,271 and transfer from the Quintus Allen Fund the sum of $2,152 for a total sum of $289,423 to be used for the Franklin County Technical School District’s annual operating assessment or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #9. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $4,820 to be used for the Franklin County Technical School District’s annual capital assessment or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #10. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $2,283,353 to be used for the Mohawk Trail Regional School District’s annual operating assessment or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee recommends approval of this article (3-2).

ARTICLE #11. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $73,947 to be used for the Mohawk Trail Regional School District’s annual capital assessment or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee recommends approval of this article (3-1 with 1 abstention).

ARTICLE #12. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $9,871 for its share of the Statutory Charges and Core Service Assessment of the Franklin Regional Council of Governments or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #13. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $2,850 for its share of the Cooperative Purchasing Program Service Assessment of the Franklin Regional Council of Governments or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #14. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $150 for its share of the Emergency Planning Committee Service Assessment of the Franklin Regional Council of Governments or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #15. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $12,408 for its share of the cost of the Franklin Regional Council of Government’s Cooperative Public Health Service or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #16. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $5,021 for its share of the cost to pay for a Regional Animal Control Officer or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #17. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $126,163 for its share of the cost to maintain the Franklin Regional Retirement System or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #18. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $6,460 to pay the town’s allocated share of the cost of the Franklin County Solid Waste Management District or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #19. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate the sum of $3,906 to pay the town’s allocated share of the cost of membership in the Upper Pioneer Valley Veteran’s Service District or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #20. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $350 to pay for its share of the Operating and Capital Costs of the Franklin County Regional Dog Control and Adoption Center or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #21. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, or otherwise provide the sum of $754,737 to pay for the operation and maintenance of the Colrain Broadband Network (an enterprise fund) or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #22. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $2,000 to be used for the Police Administration account (any amount expended will be 100% reimbursed) or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #23. To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate, the sum of $2,000 toward the cost of restoration and preservation of town records or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #24. To see if the Town will vote to transfer from free cash the sum of $190,000 to pay for the purchase of a new Highway Department Tractor/Mower or take any other action relative thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #25. To see if the Town will vote to transfer from free cash the sum of $35,000 to pay for a feasibility study to determine the costs and technical requirements of addressing drainage, flooding, security, accessibility, parking, safety, privacy concerns, and the construction of a covered gathering space at Griswold Memorial Library or take any other action relative thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #26

To see if the town will vote to appropriate a sum or sums of money for the stabilization funds as shown in the chart below or take any other action relative thereto.

2/3 vote required.

Purpose

Fund

Amount

Source of Funds

Transfer Station

Transfer Station Stabilization

10,000

Free Cash

Technology

Technology Stabilization

8,237

Free Cash

Highway

Highway Stabilization

110,000

Free Cash

Police

Police Dept. Stabilization

15,000

Free Cash

Library

Griswold Library Capital Stabilization

50,000

Free Cash

Total

Total

193,237

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #27. To see if the Town will authorize the Select Board to accept and expend, as an available fund, any of the bond issue or operating budget monies (also called “Chapter” monies) from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts through the Massachusetts Department of Transportation or pass any vote or votes in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends approval of this article.

ARTICLE #28. To see if the Town will vote to amend the MOHAWK TRAIL REGIONAL SCHOOL DISTRICT – REGIONAL DISTRICT AGREEMENT by striking the following language contained in Section IV Apportionment of Expenses among Member Towns, Subsections (A) through (J):

(A) Classification of Costs

For the purpose of apportioning assessments levied by the District upon the member towns, costs shall be divided into two categories: capital costs and operating costs.

(B) Capital Costs

Capital costs shall include all expenses in the nature of capital outlay such as the cost of acquiring land, the cost of constructing, reconstructing and adding to buildings, and the cost of remodeling or making extraordinary repairs to a school building or buildings, including

without limitations the cost of the original equipment and furnishings for such buildings or additions, plans, architects’ and consultants’ fees, grading and other costs incidental to placing school buildings and additions and related premises in operating condition. Capital costs shall also include payments of principal and interest on bonds, notes or other obligations issued by the District to finance capital costs. Instructional capital expenditures which qualify under net school spending are not included under capital costs, and instead are included as an operating cost.

(C) Operating Costs

Operating costs shall include all costs not included in capital costs as defined in subsection IV(B) but including interest on temporary notes issued by the District in anticipation of revenue.

(D) Responsibility for Capital and Operating Costs

(1) Grades 7-12

Operating and capital costs, as defined above, associated with grades seven to

twelve (7-12) inclusive of the District school or schools shall be deemed District

costs and the member towns shall be assessed their respective net shares thereof

in accordance with the provisions of this Agreement.

(2) Grades pre-K-6

  1. Costs associated with the operation of grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District schools shall be deemed operating costs of the District and the member towns shall be assessed their respective net shares thereof in accordance with the provisions of this Agreement.

  1. All capital costs incurred by the Committee and associated with grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District schools shall be deemed capital costs of the District and the member towns shall be assessed their respective net shares thereof in accordance with the provisions of section IV(E) of this Agreement.

  1. If any member town or towns should construct an elementary school, the respective member town or towns will assume responsibility for all capital costs.

(E) Apportionment of Capital Costs Grades pre-K-6

(1) Ashfield, Plainfield

Capital costs incurred by the Committee and associated with grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District school or schools serving pupils from the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield shall be apportioned to the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield as follows:

To Ashfield: A portion of the whole expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one per-cent calculated as follows: By (1), computing the ratio which the population of the Town of Ashfield bears to the total of the population of the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield, and by (2), computing the ratio which the sum of the enrollments of pupils at said school(s), resident in the Town of Ashfield, as determined by the census of pupils at said school(s) each October 1 for the five most recent years, bears to the sum of the enrollment of pupils at the Ashfield Plainfield district school(s), resident in the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield, as determined by the census of pupils at said school(s) each October 1 for the five most recent years (note: pre-K enrollment will be included in the calculation beginning in FY18 and will include the data from October 1, 2015 and October 1, 2016); and by summing both ratios ((1) + (2)), and dividing such sum by two.

To Plainfield: A portion of the whole expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one per-cent calculated as follows: By (1), computing the ratio which the population of the Town of Plainfield bears to the total of the population of the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield, and by (2), computing the ratio which the sum of the enrollments of pupils at the Ashfield Plainfield district school(s), resident in the Town of Plainfield, as determined by the census of pupils at said school(s) each October 1 for the five most recent years, bears to the sum of enrollment of pupils at the Ashfield and Plainfield district school(s), resident in the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield, as determined by the census of pupils at said school(s) each October 1 for the five most recent years (note: pre-K enrollment will be included in the calculation beginning in FY18 and will include the data from October 1, 2015 and October 1, 2016); and by summing both ratios ((1)+(2)), and dividing such sum by two.

(2) Buckland, Shelburne

Capital costs incurred by the committee and associated with grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District school or schools serving the pupils from the Towns of Buckland and Shelburne shall be apportioned to the Towns of Buckland and Shelburne as follows:

To Buckland: A portion of the total of all principal and interest on bonds, notes or other obligations as issued by the Committee consistent with the above, expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one per-cent calculated as follows: By (1), computing ratio which the sum of the enrollments of pupils at the Buckland Shelburne Elementary School, resident in the Town of Buckland, as determined by the census of pupils at said district school each October 1 for the five most recent years, bears to the sum of enrollments of pupils at the said district school, resident in the Towns of Buckland and Shelburne, as determined by the census of pupils each October 1 for the five most recent years (note: pre-K enrollment will be included in the calculation beginning in FY18 and will include the data from October 1, 2015 and October 1, 2016); and by (2) expressing such ratio as a percentage.

To Shelburne: A portion of the total of all principal and interest on bonds, notes or other obligations as issued by the Committee consistent with the above, expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one per-cent calculated as follows: By (1), computing the ratio which the sum of the enrollments of pupils at the Buckland Shelburne Elementary School, resident in the Town of Shelburne, as determined by the census of pupils at said district school each October 1 for the five most recent years, bears to the sum of enrollments of pupils at said district school, resident in the Towns of Buckland and Shelburne, as determined by the census of pupils each October 1 for the five most recent years (note: pre-K enrollment will be included in the calculation beginning in FY18 and will include the data from October 1, 2015 and October 1, 2016); and by (2) expressing such ratio as a percentage.

(3) Colrain, Heath

Effective commencing with Fiscal Year 2023, new capital costs incurred by the committee and associated with grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District school or schools serving the pupils from the Towns of Colrain and Heath shall be apportioned to the Towns of Colrain and Heath as follows:

To Colrain: A portion of the total of all principal and interest on bonds, notes or other obligations as issued by the Committee consistent with the above, expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one percent calculated as follows: By (1), computing the ratio which the sum of the enrollments of pupils at the Colrain Center School, resident in the Town of Colrain as determined by the census of pupils at said district school each October 1 for the five most recent years, bears to the sum of enrollments of pupils at said district school, resident in the Towns of Heath and Colrain, as determined by the census of pupils each October 1 for the five most recent years (note: pre-K enrollment will be included in the calculation); and by (2) expressing such ratio as a percentage. Until five years of data becomes available, the most recent years of data shall be used to determine said ratio.

To Heath: A portion of the total of all principal and interest on bonds, notes or other obligations as issued by the Committee on or after July 1, 2022 consistent with the above, expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one percent calculated as follows: By (1), computing the ratio which the sum of the enrollments of pupils at the Colrain Center School, resident in the Town of Heath as determined by the census of pupils at said district school each October 1 for the five most recent years, bears to the sum of enrollments of pupils at said district school, resident in the Towns of Heath and Colrain, as determined by the census of pupils each October 1 for the five most recent years (note: pre-K enrollment will be included in the calculation); (2) expressing such ratio as a percentage. Until five years of data becomes available, the most recent years of data shall be used to determine said ratio.

(4) The Heath Elementary School Building was returned to the Town of Heath on July 1, 2017, and the Lease between the parties terminated as of said date. In exchange for termination of the lease, the District paid to the Town of Heath a total sum of $240,000.00. Any outstanding debt payments associated with the Heath Elementary School shall remain the responsibility of the Town of Heath, and the Town of Heath shall continue to be assessed for said debt in accordance with the terms of this Agreement.

(5) Capital costs representing payments of principal and interest on bonds, notes or other obligations as issued by the Committee to finance expenses in the nature of capital outlay for the purpose of construction at the site of, or reconstruction to, the Colrain Central School or upon any premises as may be leased to the Mohawk Trail Regional School District by the Town of Colrain, shall be borne by the Towns of Colrain and Heath, as provided in Section E. (3), above.

(6) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent the member towns from amending this Agreement and modifying and/or altering the above designated schedules of apportionment of capital costs in the event subsequent school construction or reconstruction results in a change of grade level or town assignments to the District schools.

(F) Apportionment of Capital Costs Grades 7-12

Capital costs represented by debt service shall be apportioned as a capital cost of the year in which the debt service falls due.

Capital costs incurred July 1, 1993 and thereafter shall be apportioned to the member towns annually for the ensuing fiscal year as follow:

(1) Each member town’s share of capital costs associated with the District High

School for each capital project shall be apportioned to the member towns on the

basis of their respective pupil enrollments at said school. Each member town’s

share shall be determined by computing the ratio which that town’s average

pupil enrollment at said school on October 1 of each of the five years next preceding

the first year for which the apportionment is determined bears to the total

average pupil enrollment from all member towns at said school for the same

five year period. In the event that enrollment at the District High School has not been accomplished by October 1, capital costs shall be determined on the basis of enrollment in grades seven through twelve of pupils residing in each member town

and receiving education at such town’s expense on October 1 of that year.

(2) Each member town’s percentage share to the nearest one tenth of one percent will remain in effect for the term of the debt for each capital project.

(G) Apportionment of Operating Costs

Operating costs for the first fiscal year next following the effective date of Chapter 371 of the Acts of 1993 (See attachment) and for every fiscal year thereafter shall be apportioned to the member towns on the basis of their respective pupil enrollments in the regional District schools. Each member town’s share for each fiscal year shall be determined by computing the ratio which that town’s average pupil enrollment in the District schools on October 1 of each of the five years next preceding the year for which the apportionment is to be determined bears to the total average pupil enrollment from all member towns in the regional District schools for the same five year period (note: pre-K enrollment will be included in the calculation beginning in FY18 and will include the data from October 1, 2015 and October 1, 2016), as more fully set forth in Subsection IV(H) below. In the event that enrollment in the regional District schools has not been accomplished by October 1 of any year, operating costs shall be apportioned on the basis of enrollment in grades pre-kindergarten through twelve of pupils residing in each member town and receiving education at such town’s expense on October 1 of that year.

(H) The apportionment of operating costs shall be determined in accordance with the following procedure:

First: The Committee shall determine the proportion of the annual budget representing costs associated with the provisions of services to grades seven through twelve and the proportion representing costs associated with all other services including services to grades pre-kindergarten through six.

Second: The Committee shall determine the average enrollment share of each member town in grades seven through twelve, inclusive. For this purpose, average enrollment share shall equal, for each member town, its five-year average proportionate share of total student enrollment in the district schools for grades seven through twelve, as of October 1 in each of the five years immediately preceding the year for which such allocation is to be made.

Third: The Committee shall apportion costs of grades seven through twelve, inclusive, to the Towns of Hawley and Charlemont in direct proportion to each town’s five-year average share of student enrollment in grades seven through twelve, inclusive.

Fourth: The total budget, less the shares allocated to the Towns of Hawley and Charlemont, shall be apportioned among the District’s six remaining member towns on the basis of each member town’s five-year average student enrollment share. For purposes of this calculation, average enrollment share, for each of the pre-K-12 Member Towns shall be based on its five year average proportionate share of total student enrollment in the district schools (note: pre-K enrollment will be included in the calculation beginning in FY18 and will include the data from October 1, 2015 and October 1, 2016).

(I) Times of Payment of Apportioned Costs

Each member town shall pay to the District in each fiscal year its proportionate share, certified as provided in subsection VI(B), of the capital and operating costs. Except as otherwise provided in subsection VI(A), the annual share of each member town shall be paid in such amounts and at such times that at least the following percentages of such annual share shall be paid on or before the dates indicated, respectively:

August 1 16.25%

October 1 36.25%

December 1 50.00%

February 1 67.50%

April 1 87.50%

May 1 100.00%

(J) Special Funds

The District School Committee shall not interfere with a town’s or Local Education Council’s use of trust funds or other special funds, including separate town meeting articles, intended for the enhancement of the educational opportunities for that town’s pupils at the pre-K-6 grades only. The operations budget shall not be reduced by the receipt of such funds.

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and replacing said language of Section IV with the following Subsections (A) through (I), as re-lettered so as to combine existing Subsections (G) and (H) and re-letter the following sections as (H) and (I):

(A) Classification of Costs

For the purpose of apportioning assessments to the member towns, costs shall be divided into two categories: capital costs and operating costs.

(B) Capital Costs

Capital Costs to be assessed to towns (hereafter “Capital Costs”) shall include all expenses in the nature of capital outlay such as the cost of:

(1) acquiring land, constructing, reconstructing and adding to or remodeling buildings, including without limitations the cost of the original equipment and furnishings for such buildings or additions, plans, architects’ and consultants’ fees, grading and other costs incidental to placing school buildings and additions and related premises in operating condition;

(2) maintaining, or making substantial repairs to, an existing school building or buildings;

(3) purchasing buses and/or other necessary vehicles for District school use.

Capital Costs shall also include payments of principal and interest on bonds, notes or other obligations issued by the District to finance Capital Costs. Capital Costs represented by debt service shall be apportioned as a Capital Cost of the year in which the debt service falls due. Each member town’s percentage share of debt service, calculated to the nearest one hundredth of one percent at the time such debt is issued, will remain in effect for the term of the debt for each capital project.

Capital expenditures which qualify under net school spending are not included under Capital Costs, and instead are included as an operating cost.

(C) Operating Costs

Operating costs shall include all costs not included in Capital Costs as defined in Section IV(B), above, but including transportation costs (as per Section VIII of this Agreement) and interest on temporary notes issued by the District in anticipation of revenue.

(D) Responsibility for Capital and Operating Costs

(1) Grades 7-12

Operating costs and Capital Costs, as defined above, associated with grades seven to twelve (7-12), inclusive, of the District school or schools shall be deemed District costs and the member towns shall be assessed their respective shares thereof in accordance with the provisions of Sections IV (F) and (G) of this Agreement.

(2) Grades pre-K-6

  1. Costs associated with the operation of grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District schools shall be deemed operating costs of the District and the member towns shall be assessed their respective shares thereof in accordance with the provisions of Section IV (G) of this Agreement.

  1. Capital Costs incurred by the Committee and associated with grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District schools shall be deemed Capital Costs of the District and shall be assessed to member towns based on their respective shares thereof in accordance with the provisions of Section IV (E) of this Agreement.

(E) Apportionment of Capital Costs Grades pre-K-6

(1) Capital Costs assessed to member towns prior to July 1, 2024 shall be assessed under Section IV (E) of the Mohawk Trail Regional School District Regional Agreement adopted by member Towns May-June 2018 and approved by the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education on August 1, 2018, with amendments approved by the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education, October 25, 2022 (referred to hereafter as the “Prior Capital Assessment Grades pre-K to 6”). Capital Costs assessed to towns after July 1, 2024, shall be assessed to the member towns as described below in paragraphs (a) through (c) of this Section (E) (1), (referred to hereafter as “the New Capital Assessment Calculation – pre-K to 6”), subject to the Transition Period as provided in Paragraph (3) of this Section (E), below. Such assessments shall be made on the basis of each town’s proportionate share of District foundation enrollment for Grades pre-K to 6. District foundation enrollment, as defined in M.G.L. c. 70, Section 2, is determined by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) as of October 1 of each year.

(a) Ashfield, Plainfield

Capital Costs incurred by the Committee and associated with grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District school or schools serving pupils from the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield shall be apportioned to the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield as follows:

To Ashfield: A portion of the all such Capital Costs expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one percent calculated as follows: by (1) computing the ratio which the population of the Town of Ashfield bears to the total of the population of the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield, and by (2) computing the ratio which the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollment of pupils resident in the Town of Ashfield for the five most recent years bears to the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollment of pupils resident in the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield for the five most recent years; and (3) by summing both ratios ((1) + (2)) and dividing such sum by two.

To Plainfield: A portion of the all such Capital Costs expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one percent calculated as follows: by (1) computing the ratio which the population of the Town of Plainfield bears to the total of the population of the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield, and by (2) computing the ratio which the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollment of pupils resident in the Town of Plainfield for the five most recent years, bears to the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollments of pupils resident in the Towns of Ashfield and Plainfield for the five most recent years; and (3) by summing both ratios ((1) + (2)) and dividing such sum by two.

(b) Buckland, Shelburne

Capital Costs incurred by the Committee and associated with grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District school or schools serving the pupils from the Towns of Buckland and Shelburne shall be apportioned to the Towns of Buckland and Shelburne as follows:

To Buckland: A portion of the total of all such Capital Costs expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one per-cent calculated as follows: by (1) computing the ratio which the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollment of pupils resident in the Town of Buckland for the five most recent years bears to the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollments of pupils resident in the Towns of Buckland and Shelburne for the five most recent years, and by (2) expressing such ratio as a percentage.

To Shelburne: A portion of the total of all such Capital Costs expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one per-cent calculated as follows: by (1) computing the ratio which the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollment of pupils resident in the Town of Shelburne for the five most recent years bears to the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollments of pupils resident in the Towns of Buckland and Shelburne for the five most recent years, and by (2) expressing such ratio as a percentage.

(c) Colrain, Heath

Capital Costs incurred by the Committee and associated with grades pre-Kindergarten to six, inclusive, of the District school or schools serving the pupils from the Towns of Colrain and Heath shall be apportioned to the Towns of Colrain and Heath as follows:

To Colrain: A portion of the total of all such Capital Costs expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one per-cent calculated as follows: by (1) computing the ratio which the sum of District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollment of pupils resident in the Town of Colrain for the five most recent years bears to the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollments of pupils resident in the Towns of Colrain and Heath for the five most recent years, and by (2) expressing such ratio as a percentage. Until five years of data for both towns becomes available, the most recent years of data shall be used to determine said ratio.

To Heath: A portion of the total of all such Capital Costs expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one per-cent calculated as follows: by (1) computing the ratio which the sum of District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollment of pupils resident in the Town of Heath for the five most recent years bears to the sum of the District’s pre-K-6 foundation enrollments of pupils resident in the Towns of Colrain and Heath for the five most recent years, and by (2) expressing such ratio as a percentage. Until five years of data for both towns becomes available, the most recent years of data shall be used to determine said ratio.

The Town of Colrain shall retain sole responsibility for all Capital Costs for which bonds were issued prior to November 2022.

(2) Nothing in this Paragraph (E) shall be construed to prevent the member towns from amending this Agreement in accordance with Section XI in order to modify and/or alter the above designated schedules of apportionment of Capital Costs in the event subsequent school construction or reconstruction results in a change of grade level or town assignments to the District schools.

(3) Transition Period

The transition to the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6 shall take place over a period of five (5) years, beginning July 1, 2024 (for Fiscal Year 2025) and ending on June 30, 2029.

(a) For Fiscal Year 2025 (commencing July 1, 2024 and ending on June 30, 2025), determination of the most recent year’s enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6 as described in this Section IV (E), and the four years prior enrollments shall be calculated using the Prior Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6.

(b) For Fiscal Year 2026 (commencing July 1, 2025 and ending on June 30, 2026), determination of the most recent two years of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6 as described in this Section IV (E), and the three years prior enrollments shall be calculated using the Prior Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6.

(c) For Fiscal Year 2027 (commencing July 1, 2026 and ending June 30, 2027), determination of the most recent three years of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6 as described in this Section IV (E), and the two years prior enrollments shall be calculated using the Prior Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6.

(d) For Fiscal Year 2028 (commencing July 1, 2027 and ending June 30, 2028), determination of the most recent four years of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6 as described in this Section IV (E), and the one year prior enrollment shall be calculated using the Prior Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6.

(e) For Fiscal Year 2029 (commencing July 1, 2028) and all subsequent years, determination of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades pre-K to 6 as described in this Section IV (E).

(F) Apportionment of Capital Costs Grades 7-12

(1) Capital Costs assessed to member towns prior to July 1, 2024 shall be assessed under Section IV (F) of the Mohawk Trail Regional School District Regional Agreement adopted by member Towns May-June 2018 and approved by the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education on August 1, 2018, with amendments approved by the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education, October 25, 2022 (referred to hereafter as “the Prior Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12”). Capital Costs assessed to towns after July 1, 2024, shall be assessed to the member towns as described below in paragraph (2) of this Section (F) (referred to hereafter as “the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12”), subject to the Transition Period as provided in Paragraph (3) of this Section (F), below. Such assessments shall be made on the basis of each town’s proportionate share of District foundation enrollment for Grades 7-12. District foundation enrollment, as defined in M.G.L. c. 70, Section 2, is determined by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) as of October 1 of each year.

(2) Each member town’s share of Capital Costs associated with the District Middle School/High School as well as District-Wide Capital Costs shall be apportioned to the member towns on the basis of said town’s share of the District’s foundation enrollment for Grades 7-12. Each member town’s share shall be determined by computing the ratio which Grade 7-12 students who reside in each town and are included in the District’s foundation enrollment for each of the most recent five years bears to the District’s total foundation enrollment for Grades 7-12 for the same five-year period, expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one percent.

(3) Transition Period

The transition to the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12 shall take place over a period of five (5) years, beginning July 1, 2024 (for Fiscal Year 2025) and ending on June 30, 2029.

(a) For Fiscal Year 2025 (commencing July 1, 2024 and ending on June 30, 2025), determination of the most recent year’s enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12 as described in this Section IV (F), and the four years prior enrollments shall be calculated using the Prior Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12).

(b) For Fiscal Year 2026 (commencing July 1, 2025 and ending on June 30, 2026), determination of the most recent two years of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12 as described in this Section IV (F), and the three years prior enrollments shall be calculated using the Prior Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12).

(c) For Fiscal Year 2027 (commencing July 1, 2026 and ending June 30, 2027), determination of the most recent three years of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12 as described in this Section IV (F), and the two years prior enrollments shall be calculated using the Prior Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12).

(d) For Fiscal Year 2028 (commencing July 1, 2027 and ending June 30, 2028), determination of the most recent four years of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12 as described in this Section IV (F), and the one year prior enrollment shall be calculated using the Prior Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12).

(e) For Fiscal Year 2029 (commencing July 1, 2028) and all subsequent years, determination of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis the New Capital Assessment Calculation – Grades 7-12 as described in this Section IV (F).

(G) Apportionment of Operating Costs

Each member town will contribute to the District no less than its minimum required local contribution as determined by the Commissioner pursuant to M.G.L. c. 70, Section 6. Any amounts in excess of the minimum required local contribution needed to support the District's budget will be assessed to the member towns in accordance with this Section IV (G.)

(1) Operating Costs assessed to member towns prior to July 1, 2024 will be assessed under Sections IV (G) and IV (H) of the Mohawk Trail Regional School District Regional Agreement adopted by MTRSD Towns May-June 2018 and approved by the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education on August 1, 2018, with amendments approved by the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education, October 25, 2022 (referred to hereafter as “the Prior Operating Assessment Calculation”).

(2) Operating Costs assessed to member towns after July 1, 2024, shall be assessed as described in paragraphs (a) through (d), below, (referred to hereafter as “the New Operating Assessment Calculation”), subject to the Transition Period as provided in Paragraph (3) of this Section IV (G). Such assessments shall be made on the basis of each town’s proportionate share of District foundation enrollment. District foundation enrollment, as defined in M.G.L. c. 70, Section 2, is determined by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) as of October 1 of each year.

(a) First, the Committee shall determine the proportion of the annual budget representing costs associated with the provision of services to grades seven through twelve and the proportion representing costs associated with all Central Office and District-Wide services, including such services to grades pre-kindergarten through six.

(b) Second, the Committee shall determine the average District foundation enrollment share of each member town in grades seven through twelve, inclusive. For this purpose, each member town’s share shall be determined by computing the ratio which Grade 7-12 students who reside in each town and are included in the District’s foundation enrollment for each of the most recent five years bears to the District’s total foundation enrollment for Grades 7-12 for the same five-year period, expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one percent.

(c) Third, the Committee shall apportion the costs of grades seven through twelve, inclusive, to the Towns of Hawley and Charlemont in direct proportion to each town’s five-year average share of District foundation enrollment in grades seven through twelve, inclusive.

(d) Fourth, the total amount in excess of the aggregate minimum required local contributions, less the shares allocated to the Towns of Hawley and Charlemont, shall be apportioned among the District’s six remaining member towns on the basis of each member town’s five-year average District foundation enrollment share. For purposes of this calculation, average District foundation enrollment share for each of the pre-K-12 Member Towns shall be based on its five-year average proportionate share of total District foundation enrollment.

(3) Transition Period

The transition to the New Operating Assessment Calculation shall take place over a period of five (5) years, beginning July 1, 2024 (for Fiscal Year 2025) and ending on June 30, 2029.

(a) For Fiscal Year 2025 (commencing July 1, 2024 and ending on June 30, 2025), determination of the most recent year’s enrollment shall be calculated on the basis of the New Operating Assessment Calculation as described in this Section IV (G), and the four years prior enrollments shall be calculated using the “Prior Operating Assessment Calculation”).

(b) For Fiscal Year 2026 (commencing July 1, 2025 and ending on June 30, 2026), determination of the most recent two years of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis of the New Operating Assessment Calculation as described in this Section IV (G), and the three years prior enrollments shall be calculated using the Prior Operating Assessment Calculation.

(c) For Fiscal Year 2027 (commencing July 1, 2026 and ending June 30, 2027), determination of the most recent three years of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis of the New Operating Assessment Calculation as described in this Section IV (G), and the two years prior enrollments shall be calculated using the Prior Operating Assessment Calculation.

(d) For Fiscal Year 2028 (commencing July 1, 2027 and ending June 30, 2028), determination of the most recent four years of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis of the New Operating Assessment Calculation as described in this Section IV (G), and the one year prior enrollment shall be calculated using the Prior Operating Assessment Calculation.

(e) For Fiscal Year 2029 (commencing July 1, 2028) and all subsequent years, determination of enrollment shall be calculated on the basis of the New Operating Assessment Calculation as described in this Section IV (G).

(H) Times of Payment of Apportioned Costs

Each member town shall pay to the District in each fiscal year its proportionate share, certified as provided in subsection VI(B), of the capital and operating costs. Except as otherwise provided in subsection VI(A), the annual share of each member town shall be paid in such amounts and at such times that at least the following percentages of such annual share shall be paid on or before the dates indicated, respectively:

August 1 16.25%

October 1 36.25%

December 1 50.00%

February 1 67.50%

April 1 87.50%

May 1 100.00%

(I) Special Funds

The District School Committee shall not interfere with a town’s or Local Education Council’s use of trust funds or other special funds, including separate town meeting articles, intended for the enhancement of the educational opportunities for that town’s pupils at the pre-K-6 grades only. The operations budget shall not be reduced by the receipt of such funds.

The Finance Committee recommends not approving this article (4-1).

ARTICLE #29. To see if the Town will vote to amend the MOHAWK TRAIL REGIONAL SCHOOL DISTRICT – REGIONAL DISTRICT AGREEMENT by striking the following language contained in Section VI – Budget:

(A) Tentative Maintenance and Operating Budget

On or before February 8th, the Committee shall annually prepare a tentative maintenance and operating budget for the next fiscal year, including therein provision for any installment of principal or interest to become due in such year on any bonds or other evidence of indebtedness of the District and any other capital costs to be apportioned to the member towns in such year. The said budget shall be in reasonable detail, including the amounts payable under the following classifications of expenses and such other classifications as may be necessary:

1. Administration

2. Instruction

3. Other School Services

4. Operation and Maintenance of Plant

5. Fixed Charges

6. Community Services

7. Acquisition of Fixed Assets

8. Debt Retirement and Debt Service

9. Programs with Other Districts and Private Schools

10. Transportation

Copies of such tentative budget shall be mailed to the chairperson of the board of selectmen and finance committee of such town.

(B) Final Maintenance and Operating Budget

The Committee shall on or before March 1 in each year adopt an annual maintenance and operating budget for the next fiscal year, said budget to include debt and interest charges and any other current capital costs as separate items, and shall apportion the amounts necessary to be raised in order to meet the said budget in accordance with the provisions of subsections IV(E) and IV(F) and with the provisions of sub-section IV(G), provided however, that the Committee shall adopt said annual maintenance and operating budget for the next fiscal year not later than forty-five days prior to the earliest date on which the business session of the annual town meeting of any member town is to be held, but not later than March 1, and further provided that said annual maintenance and operating budget need not be adopted prior to January 18. The amounts so apportioned for each member town shall, within twenty days from the date on which the annual budget is adopted by the regional school district committee, and not later than March 10, be certified by the District treasurer to the treasurers of the member towns.

(C) High School Operating and Maintenance Budget for the purpose of Determining Tuition

For the purposes of determining tuition, the High School Operating and Maintenance Budget is defined as that portion of the budget relating to expenditures for high school level pupils in grades seven through twelve, inclusive. Budget lines for shared high school and elementary school costs, including but not limited to Administration and Transportation, shall be apportioned by computing the ratio which the grades 7-12 average pupil enrollment in the regional district on October 1 of each of the five years next preceding the year for which the apportionment is determined bears to the total average pupil enrollment from all member towns in the Regional School District for the same five year period (note: pre-K enrollment will be included in the calculation beginning in FY18 and will include the data from October 1, 2015 and October 1, 2016). The High School Operating and Maintenance Budget shall not include any cost for capital debt retirement or debt service.

(D) Vote on the Annual Budget

For purposes of voting on the annual budget by the member towns, the approval of the District’s annual budget by the town meetings of each pre-K-12 Member Town shall constitute two “units” towards approval or disapproval of the annual District budget, while Hawley and Charlemont shall have one “unit” each, with a total of ten units needed to approve the annual budget.

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and replacing said language with the following:

(A) Tentative Maintenance and Operating Budget

On or before February 15th, the Committee shall annually prepare a tentative maintenance and operating budget for the next fiscal year, including therein provision for any installment of principal or interest to become due in such year on any bonds or other evidence of indebtedness of the District and any other capital costs to be apportioned to the member towns in such year. The said budget shall be in reasonable detail, including the amounts payable under the following classifications of expenses and such other classifications as may be necessary:

1. Administration

2. Instruction

3. Other School Services

4. Operation and Maintenance of Plant

5. Fixed Charges

6. Community Services

7. Acquisition of Fixed Assets

8. Debt Retirement and Debt Service

9. Programs with Other Districts and Private Schools

10. Transportation

Copies of such tentative budget shall be delivered via mail or email to the chairperson of the board of selectmen and finance committee of each member town.

(B) Final Maintenance and Operating Budget

The Committee shall on or before March 1 in each year adopt by a two-thirds vote of the full Committee an annual maintenance and operating budget for the next fiscal year, said budget to include debt and interest charges and any other current capital costs as separate items, and shall apportion the amounts necessary to be raised in order to meet the said budget in accordance with the provisions of subsections IV(E) and IV(F) and with the provisions of sub-section IV(G), provided however, that the Committee shall adopt said annual maintenance and operating budget for the next fiscal year not later than forty-five days prior to the earliest date on which the business session of the annual town meeting of any member town is to be held, but not later than March 1, and further provided that said annual maintenance and operating budget need not be adopted prior to January 18. The amounts so apportioned for each member town shall, within thirty days from the date on which the annual budget is adopted by the regional school district committee, and not later than March 31, be certified by the District treasurer to the treasurers of the member towns.

(C) High School Operating and Maintenance Budget for the purpose of Determining Tuition

For the purposes of determining tuition, the High School Operating and Maintenance Budget is defined as that portion of the budget relating to expenditures for high school level pupils in grades seven through twelve, inclusive. Budget lines for shared high school and elementary school costs, including but not limited to Administration and Transportation, shall be apportioned by computing the ratio which Grade 7-12 students who reside in member towns and are included in the District’s foundation enrollment for each of the most recent five years bears to the District’s total foundation enrollment for Grades Pre-K to 12 for the same five-year period, expressed as a percentage of the total to the nearest one-hundredth of one percent. The High School Operating and Maintenance Budget shall not include any cost for capital debt retirement or debt service.

(D) Vote on the Annual Budget

Consistent with Chapter 31 of the Acts of 2017, for purposes of voting on the annual budget by the member towns, the approval of the District’s annual budget by the town meetings of each pre-K-12 Member Town shall constitute two “units” towards approval or disapproval of the annual District budget, while Hawley and Charlemont shall have one “unit” each, with a total of ten units needed to approve the annual budget.

The Finance Committee recommends not approving this article (4-1).

ARTICLE #30. To see if the Town will vote to amend the MOHAWK TRAIL REGIONAL SCHOOL DISTRICT – REGIONAL DISTRICT AGREEMENT by striking the following language contained in Section XV Effective Date:

This amended Agreement shall take full effect in accordance with its terms on July 1, 2018 and shall supersede the prior District Agreement, including any prior amendments.

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and replacing said language with the following:

This amended Agreement shall take full effect in accordance with its terms, following approval by all member towns and by the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education, on July 1, 2023, and shall supersede the prior District Agreement, including any prior amendments. Nothing in this amended Agreement shall affect the apportionment of assessments to member towns prior to Fiscal Year 2025.

The Finance Committee recommends not approving this article (4-1).

ARTICLE #31. (By petition) To see if the Town of Colrain will vote to approve the following resolution:

Whereas the Town of Colrain has spent time and money improving the town center with new sidewalks, curb ramps and crosswalks, a redesigned intersection and Veterans’ Memorial along Main Road and Jacksonville Road, and

Whereas, during the winter months, snow on the sidewalks has made their use by pedestrians difficult or impossible forcing them to walk in the road, and

Whereas, because of the State’s requirements for school transportation reimbursement, the MTRSD Student Transportation Policy holds that students residing within one and one-half miles of the school will not be provided school bus service, and

Whereas in the event of an emergency the evacuation route for the Colrain Central School would have students and staff walk in large numbers along these roads and

Whereas, we wish to be proactive in our approach to public safety and keep pedestrians safe on these dangerous sections of road, and

Whereas these sidewalks are on a patchwork of privately owned and town owned properties between the school, town owned parking spaces, the town garage where meetings are sometimes held, the veteran’s memorial, the Historical Society buildings at the G. William Pitt House, the Griswold Memorial Library, and the Post Office, and

Whereas, we do not wish to burden private property owners, many of whom are elderly, with the responsibility of clearing snow from sidewalks that were installed by the town,

Whereas according to ADA/Section 504, “A public agency must maintain its walkways in an accessible condition, with only isolated or temporary interruptions in accessibility. 28 CFR sec. 35.133. Part of this maintenance obligation includes reasonable snow removal efforts. (9-12-06)”

Whereas according to a 2008 memo, the Federal Highway Administration noted a requirement to clear sidewalks that were built with federal funds. “Current maintenance provisions require pedestrian facilities built with Federal funds to be maintained in the same manner as other roadway assets.”

Now be it hereby resolved that the Colrain Highway Dept. will regularly ensure sidewalks, crosswalks, and curb ramps, spanning from the school to the post office, including the East side of Jacksonvile Road, are clear of snow and debris, maintaining them in the same manner as roadways.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends not approving this article.

ARTICLE #32. (By petition) To see if the Town of Colrain will vote to direct the Selectboard to authorize by vote that the Town Website, http://Colrain-MA.gov be the official posting site for all Colrain Public Meeting notices and to have the Town Clerk notify the Attorney General of this change. The transition from posting to the Town Office bulletin board to the Website shall be completed within six months of an affirmative vote on this Article or to do or act anything in relation thereto.

The Finance Committee unanimously recommends not approving this article.

And you are directed to serve this Warrant by posting up attested copies thereof at two usual places in said town, seven days at least, before the time of holding said meeting.

Hereof, fail not, and make due return of this Warrant, with your doings thereon, to the Town Clerk, at the time and place of meeting, as aforesaid.

Given under our hands this ninth day of May two thousand twenty-three.

___________________________________

W. Thomas Griffin

__________________________________

Benjamin Eastman

__________________________________

Emily Thurber

Colrain Select Board

A TRUE COPY.

Attest: _________________________

Constable

Attached File:

Calendar of Events
Select Board Meeting -- SCHEDULED
Thu, Feb 22, 2024, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Posted to: Select Board
Thu, Feb 22, 2024, 11:00 am - 1:00 pm
Zoom - https://bit.ly/ColrainCPAMeeting
Sat, Feb 24, 2024, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Town Clerk Office
Posted to: Elections
Sun, Feb 25, 2024, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Town Clerk Office
Posted to: Elections
Mon, Feb 26, 2024, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Colrain Town Office - 55 Main Rd, Colrain, MA 01340
Posted to: Council on Aging
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