Guided walk to the Vernon Black Gum Swamps

A trio of experts will lead a guided walk to visit one or more the Black Gum Swamps in Vernon’s J. Maynard Miller Town Forest on Friday, April 28 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

This is an opportunity for people who may never have visited the Black Gum Swamps to see them, and for anyone interested to gain a better understanding of their ecological uniqueness and their value to the town.

Leading this excursion will be:

  • William C. “Bill” Guenther, Windham County Forester with the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation
  • Laura Lapierre, Wetlands Program Director, Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation
  • Eric Sorenson, Natural Community Ecologist, Wildlife Division, Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department


School budget revote

Following the defeat of the proposed Vernon Elementary School budget in the election of March 7, the Vernon School Board is meeting on March 27 to finalize a revised budget.

A town-wide vote on the revised budget will take place on Tuesday, April 13, with polls open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. as usual.

The School Board will hold an informational session on the new budget on April 10th at the Vernon Elementary School, time to be announced (presumably 6 or 6:30 p.m.).

Absentee ballot requests are now being accepted at the Town Clerk’s office, and the ballots will be mailed out after the article is finalized on March 27th. If you are not a registered voter, Vermont state law now provides for same day registration at the polls.

Vernon resident is appointed to Vermont Supreme Court

BRATTLEBORO — Gov. Phil Scott announced late Thursday morning that he has selected Windham Superior Court Judge Karen Carroll to the Vermont Supreme Court. Scott selected Carroll from a pool of eight candidates, each nominated by Vermont’s Judicial Nominating Board.

Carroll, of Vernon, will replace Justice John Dooley on the Vermont Supreme Court. Judge Dooley is set to retire on March 31.

“The Vermont Supreme Court serves a vital role in protecting our state’s Constitution, upholding our laws, ensuring fairness in our systems and the accountability of our institutions,” said Scott. “Appointing a Justice to the Vermont Supreme Court, or any court, is an important responsibility, and one I take very seriously. Among a pool of very strong and capable candidates, Judge Carroll distinguished herself based on her depth of experience, character, integrity, and — most importantly — understanding and application of the law.”  Read more at Brattleboro Reformer

Selectboard Meeting, March 21, 2017

Here is video recorded by Brattleboro Community Television of the March 21, 2017 Selectboard meeting. Scroll down for the agenda with time stamps.  Click here to view or download the agenda for this meeting. Minutes of this meeting will be posted here when available.

0:00:22 – Call to Order/Pledge/Election of Officers

0:06:50 – Public Comment

0:15:43 – Treasurer’s Report

0:17:42 – Nesbitt’s Portside Tavern

0:20:10 – Increase in access permit fees at WSWMD

0:21:50 – Bill to compensate towns for tax overpayments

0:24:42 – Purchase of 3 new office computers for $4,665.75

0:26: 30 – Approve purchase of projector and screen

0:28:46 – Select board rules

0:42:08 – Lost Keys – Replace Lock to Entrance

0:44:25 – James Cusick scholarship

0:46:05 – Town Juror interest/Town Agent interest

0:49:09 – Approve RFPs for Landscape/Snow Removal/Office Cleaning

0:59:58 – Fire Dept discussion

1:02:20 Annual Financial Plan for Town & Highways

1:04:38 – Fire Dept discussion (continued)

1:05:30 – Executive Session – Fire Dept Personnel matter

1:05:51 – Correspondence

1:09:40 – Town Administrators Report

Vernon Selectboard organizational meeting, March 7, 2017

At its organizational meeting following the election on Tuesday, March 7, the Vernon Selectboard:

  • Elected Josh Unruh as its Chair
  • Elected Sandra Harris as Vice Chair
  • Elected Steven Skibniowsky as Clerk
  • Established as its meeting the first and third Tuesdays of each month at 6:30 p.m.
  • Designated as its recording secretary Michelle Millerick
  • Elected as Fence Viewers: Michael Ball, Annette Roydon, Thomas Rappaport
  • Designated as Pound Keeper: Windham County Humane Society
  • Elected as Inspectors of Lumber, Shingles and Wood: Annette Roydon, Christiane Howe
  • Elected as Weighers of Coal: Annette Roydon, Christiane Howe
  • Elected as Tree Wardens: Roland Walker, Annette Roydon
  • Invited interested parties to submit letters of interest for election as Grand Juror and Town Agent, by March 17.

(Updated 3/8/2017 to mention the election of Sandra Harris as vice-chair.)

Election results, March 7, 2017

Here are the results of the election of March 7, 2017. Winners are shown bold. There were 514 total voters

Office Candidate(s) Votes
SELECTBOARD — 3 year term Jean Carr

Jessica Freeman Earp

Kristina Walker





SELECTBOARD — 2 year term Jeff Dunklee  405
SCHOOL BOARD — 3 year term Deborah Hebert  404
SCHOOL BOARD — 2 year term Kerry Amidon  430
SCHOOL BOARD — 1 year term Sandy Morrison  432
TREASURER — 3 year term Cindy Turnley  413
FIRST CONSTABLE — 1 year term Peter Crossmon  459
SECOND CONSTABLE — 1 year term Scott Lane  424
LISTER — 3 year term Jermiah Sund  410
DELINQUENT TAX COLLECTOR — 1 year term Marylynn Scherlin  405
TOWN MODERATOR — 1 year term Timothy Arsenault  472
SCHOOL MODERATOR — 1 year term Timothy Arsenault  470
TOWN AGENT — 1 year term  (insufficient votes to elect)
GRAND JUROR — 1 year term  (insufficient votes to elect)
SCHOOL BUDGET — approval of $4,079,300 budget Yes




‘Hunt’ing Down History (final episode)

By Barbara Emery Moseley

NOTE: This series chronicles the generations of Vernon’s Hunt family, all related to Jonathan Hunt of “Governor Hunt Road” fame. If you’ve missed any installments in this series, you can catch up here!

PHOTO: Bracelet with cameo portraits of four sons of Jonathan and Jane Hunt (physician Jonathan Hunt, painter William Morris Hunt, architect Richard Morris Hunt and early photographer and New York attorney Leavitt Hunt), carved by artist William Morris Hunt, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Photo by Martin Langeveld.

Two days before Halloween, four years ago, I slipped through a side door of a massive, two-story granite building in Barre. I was met by a woman who said she had “something of interest” to show me. “It is just their heads,” she continued, cautioning me “not to touch them.” I was given white gloves to wear, just in case I forgot her orders.

I was in the workroom of the Vermont Historical Society Museum in Barre’s former Spaulding High School. (There is also the Main Museum in the old Pavilion Building near the Capitol in Montpelier.) Before me were portraits of Jonathan and Lavinah Hunt. They had been purchased from the same family selling the Hunt family papers; $3,000 was paid for the portraits. The paintings were about to be properly packaged and shipped to the Art Conservation wing of the Clark Museum in Williamstown, MA, where cleaning and possible repairs would be professionally done.

The portraits were painted by Lavinah’s nephew, Caleb Lyman, as a wedding present. Jonathan Hunt is shown wearing a dark coat, with a white cravat tied in a bow. His light brown hair, sprinkled with white, is combed back from his face, revealing a receding hairline. Lavinah is wearing a dark dress with a fichu (a 3-cornered shawl of a light material) tucked into the V-neckline. Her white day cap stands upright and reveals a bit of auburn hair tucked behind her ear. Her blue eyes look directly at the viewer. (more…)

March news from Vernon’s churches

Vernon Advent Christian Church, located at 4554 Fort Bridgman Road at the VT/MA state line, meets every Sunday at 9:15 am for Sunday School classes for all ages. Morning worship begins at 10:30 am and Youth Group and Intercessory Prayer meet at 6:00 pm. Adult Bible study begins every Wednesday at 6:30 pm at the church and other Bible study meetings are held throughout the week. The building is handicapped accessible. Church Phone: 802-257-2341 or 413-498-4458. Pastor: Rev. Bruce C. Burks, email: Website: and FaceBook.

Mountain View Seventh-day Adventist Church, located at 1002 Fort Bridgman Road, Vernon, VT, meets every Saturday at 9:40 am for Sabbath School classes for all ages. Church service begins at 11:15 am. All are welcome. Church phone: 802-254-5088. Pastor Art Miller: 802-254-4477; email:  Website. Facebook.

Vernon Union Church, located at 2631 Fort Bridgman Road (next to Vernon Hall), Vernon, VT. Meets every Sunday: 8:00 am, prayer time; 9:00 am, Bible study; 10:00 am, morning worship, followed by a social hour. Childcare is available. The church is fully handicapped accessible. Church phone: 802-257-8523. Minister: Rev. Terry Robinson, 802-258-2228. Email: vuch@vernonunion.comcastbiz.netWebsite.

Farmland Protection presentation

At the Town Meeting this year, there are two articles on the warrant (Articles 24 and 25) dealing with proposals to expend funds from the Farmland Protection Fund to acquire development rights on two parcels of farmland. A presentation from the Farmland Protection Advisory Committee which explains these articles can be downloaded here.

Selectboard meeting, Feb. 21, 2017

As filmed by Brattleboro Community Television, here’s the February 21, 2017 Selectboard meeting, with agenda item start times below. Click here to download the agenda for this meeting. And click here to download the draft minutes.

Call to Order

00:34  –  Welcome / Pledge of Allegiance

01:00  –  Additions to Agenda

01:07  –  Chair’s Remarks

01:29  –  Public Comments

01:46  –  Approval of Minutes

04:37  –  Bills and Warrants

05:53  –  New Business: Investment Policy Amendment

13:10  –  New Business: Reappraisal Agreement – for Board Signature

15:12  –  New Business: Entergy Letter of Agreement – for Board Signature

16:20  –  New Business: Windham Regional Contract for Planing Work with Planning Commission

17:10  –  New Business: Bill to Compensate Towns for Property Tax Over-payments

24:40  –  Old Business: Articles for Annual Town Report/Town Meeting

26:55  –  Bills and Warrants

27:56  –  New Business: Selectboard Chair

38:37  –  Old Business: Articles for Annual Town Report/Town Meeting

45:19  –  Town Administrator Report

54:00  –  Upcoming Meeting Schedule

56:04  –  Adjournment

Absentee ballot information

Town Clerk Tim Johnson Arsenault has announced that he will have ballots for the March 7 election in hand on Feb. 13, and will send out absentee/early voting ballots then.

If you’d like an early ballot, but had not requested one yet this year, please let Tim know:

  • by email (
  • by phone (802-257-0292, Ext. 11)
  • in person (Monday through Thursday: 7:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.; Town Offices, 567 Governor Hunt Rd., Vernon)
  • or via the Vermont Secretary of state’s “My Voter Page”

Remember, the town wide election is Tuesday, March 7 with the polls open 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. at the Vernon town hall.