COVID-19: March 16 Afternoon Update

The Town Office at 5 School Street remains open for business for now. Department Heads met this morning to discuss the pluses and minuses of closing the office and working remotely, closing the office to just the public, being available by appointment only, and other options. At the Select Board meeting on Thursday, I will be presenting some options to the Board for consideration. It is likely that we will be closing the office and strongly encouraging people to work from home and the public to pay bills online. Stay tuned for more information.

The Department Heads will meet again on Wednesday morning to discuss many items relating to internal processes and procedures to protect employees and to discuss how to adapt to continue providing good public service. Items relating to latter, include:

  • Flexibility in deadlines for Planning Board, Zoning Board and Conservation Commission decisions. Right now the state is not offering any guidance so we are feeling our way through.
  • Protocols for meetings. Can we have meetings by video conference.
  • Transfer Station procedures: Hours, contact with the public and staff.
  • Seasonal hookups and water meter reading. Similar discussion to the Transfer Station.
  • Communications: Gathering resources to make available to the community through the Town website, Facebook, and on community TV. Stay tuned for short videos on a variety of topics such as how to access the Police and Fire Departments.
  • Connecting people to community resources such as food donations, restaurants willing to offer low-cost meals for kids, volunteers to shop for vulnerable populations and driving to appointments.
  • Business support: Looking at ways that the community can support out local businesses through purchasing gift cards and the like.
  • Making sure playground equipment is disinfected.

We don't have all the answers, but we are working diligently to plan accordingly and as quickly as we can. Watch Town's website and Facebook page for ongoing updates.

Until then, stay safe everyone! (Nik)