Vernon reaches 6-year property tax deal with Entergy

A six-year contract between the town and the owner of Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant was called “very generous” by Finance Committee Chairwoman Patty O’Donnell.

“The assessment includes all the Vermont Yankee land and the dry cask storages,” O’Donnell said following Tuesday’s Select Board meeting when the agreement was approved. “There’s 58 casks. The casks are all included.”

Entergy, which is conducting the preliminary phases of decommissioning since the plant’s shutdown in December 2014, will be providing a payment in lieu of municipal services property taxes. Spent fuel will be stored in the casks.

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Trash rates reduced

At its meeting on May 24, the Selectboard reduced the cost of trash bags to $3.50 for large bags (from $5) and $2.50 for small bags (from $4). Rolls are reduced to $17.50 per roll of large bags (from $25), $12.50 per roll of small bags (from $20).

More details to come.

Help fund Vernon’s fireworks!

Fireworks aren’t free! We need your help!

Vernon has enjoyed a rich history of enjoying each others company since 1975 at its annual town picnic and fireworks display, held the last Saturday in June. The town no longer has the funds to put on the fireworks, penny carnival, and all the other wonderful things that brings our town together on this very special day.

That’s where you as a donor come in — can you help? You can donate here! The town picnic committee has launched a fund raising campaign will use all funds raised to fund this years town picnic & fireworks. This is a wonderful event enjoyed by residents of Vernon and several people from surrounding towns. It’s a day for families to be together and enjoy each other’s company without the world’s many distractions.

What is a day of fun and an evening of fireworks worth to you? A family day at, say, Six Flags or the Big E could easily set you back $200 or more. Can you donate $100 for the picnic and fireworks? Or whatever amount you choose?

The town picnic committee is grateful for any and all donations, all proceeds will be used on this or future town picnics. If everyone can chip in a little we can REACH OUR GOAL!!

Photo by Epic Fireworks, used under Creative Commons License

Historians Events: Memorial Day Service, Pie Sale

The Historians will host the Vernon Community Memorial Day Service on Monday, May 30th, at 3:30 PM at the Pond Road Chapel.

Please join in honoring all veterans at the annual Vernon Community Memorial Day Service.  The service will be held at the Pond Road Chapel located at 634 Pond Road, onMonday, May 30, at 3:30 p.m.  The story of World War II pilot 2nd Lt. Michael E. Butinsky, whose plane was shot down over Poland, will be presented, and descendants of Lt. Butinsky’s family will take part in the program.  Featured musicians will be the Amidon family playing brass instruments.  This event is planned and presented by the Vernon Historians.  Those wishing to ride the Vernon bus, please call Reita at 254-2694.


The Vernon Historical Museum, located at 4201 Fort Bridgman Road, will open for the season on Sunday, June 5th.  The Museum is open each year from June through September on Sunday afternoons from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.and also by appointment.  The Vernon Historians will hold a pie sale again this year on the Museum’s opening day to raise funds for the work of their organization.  The Historians are requesting donations of pies of any variety from members and non-member friends of the organization.  Pies may be dropped off at the Museum on the day of the sale (June 5), beginning at 1:30 p.m., or donors may call Peg Frost (254-2263) or Nancy Gassett (257-4675) to make other arrangements.  We greatly appreciate all who help and support our work in preserving and presenting local history.

We are pleased that 16 of the Vernon 4th graders took advantage of the opportunity to have their Vermont projects on display at the Museum this summer.   Come see their projects and visit the brick schoolhouse museum any Sunday, June through September from 2 to 4 p.m.
The Museum is located on Fort Bridgman Road about one mile north of the Mass. state line.

Vernon Town-wide Tag Sale / Yard Sale, Saturday & Sunday

If you’re visiting this page looking for a 2017 Vernon town-wide tag sale: There will NOT be one in the spring. The next one is scheduled for the weekend of September 9-10. Check in with this website in late August and we should have the info posted. Below is the info about last year’s spring tag sale.


Lots of tag sales and yard sales will take place this weekend in Vernon — both Saturday and Sunday, May 21 & 22, 2016, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day. Below is a map showing locations — click map for a larger view, or to download a printable PDF version click here.

Vernon Tag Sale Road Map


Fire Department Muster

The Vernon Fire Department will be hosting its second annual fire muster at the Vernon Recreation Department field on Huckle Hill Road in Vernon. Come see local fire departments compete head to head and see who wins!


Vernon Community Visit Day, May 18 — to develop new visions for Vernon

On Wednesday, May 18th 2016, all members of the Vernon community are invited to participate in a series of forums in town to share their concerns and ideas. The Vermont Council on Rural Development will bring a team of over 20 federal, state, business, nonprofit, and philanthropic leaders who will listen to residents and will return in months ahead to the community with recommendations, ideas and support in developing action plans and funding strategies. Click HERE for the schedule of the day.

The forum sessions for discussion on the 18th will include: Community Events: Arts, Culture & Multi-Generational Activities; Village Center & Gathering Place; Recreation, Trails & the River; Economic Development; Youth; and Vernon’s New Identity.

As part of the Community Visit process, we are also facilitating a Youth Forum (with FREE PIZZA) on Wed., May 11th 6:30-7:30pm @ the Vernon Elementary School Cafeteria. Vernon middle and high school students are invited to share their thoughts and ideas about how to build a strong future for Vernon!! Youth are encouraged to come to the May 18th Community Visit Day forums as well. INFO:

A new Town Administrator is hired: Michelle Pong

Screen Shot 2016-05-12 at 8.15.04 AMFollowing a lengthy hiring process, Michelle L. Pong of West Chesterfield, NH has been hired for the new position of Vernon Town Administrator.

The Selectboard voted unanimously to make the appointment at its regular meeting on May 2.

Pong has been program director of the Lead Safe & Healthy Homes program of the Parks Place Community Resource Center in Bellows Fall, VT. She grew up in Brattleboro and is a graduate of Keene State College. She worked as a broadcast journalist and as a public relations specialist before joining Parks Place in 2007. She is certified as a Lead Inspector/Risk Assessor, and is an instructor for state and federal lead certification training. She is married to Christopher Pong; they have a daughter, Caroline, and two dogs.

The Town Meeting of March 2, 2015 initially authorized creation of the position by passing a budget which contained $50,000 for the position of an “Administrative Assistant”, along with benefits costing about $21,000. A motion to remove funding from that budget was defeated at that meeting.

Subsequently, the terminology changed to “Town Administrator” and a Town Administrator Search Committee was appointed, consisting of Michael Courtemanche, Emily Vergobbe, Dale Gassett, Ellen Merkle and Tim Arsenault. Courtemanche became chair of the committee, but subsequently resigned. His position was replaced by Josh Unruh. Tom Guerino served as an advisor to the committee.

The Search Committee advertised the position, reviewed numerous resumes, interviewed candidates, and recommended finalists to the Selectboard which conducted the final interviews in recent months before selecting Pong.

Pong is expected to begin work in early June.

Vernon town-wide tag sale: May 21 and 22

Vernon is hosting its first ever town-wide yard sale to attract lots of shoppers! Clean out your attic, basement, garage – whatever – and make some extra cash! It’s happening May 21 and 22, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day.

There is a $10 registration fee, which covers:

  • Two weeks of advertising in local media
  • Yard sign to attract shoppers
  • Map of yard sale sites for shoppers to find you

No freeloading, please! Be a good neighbor — if you plan to enjoy the benefits, please contribute to the expense.

Please return the following registration info by May 12th to be included on the map.

Contact Emily Vergobbe 258-3031 or Bronna Zlochiver 579-1567 with questions.

Name: _______________________________________

Phone Number: _________________________

Street Address: ____________________________________________________

Make checks payable to: Town of Vernon

Drop forms and checks off at the Town office (open Monday through Thursday: 6 a.m.-5:00 p.m.)

Or mail to: Treasurer, 567 Governor Hunt Road, Vernon, VT 05354


Photo by Sandra Rose-Cohen, used under Creative Commons License

‘Hunt’ing down history, Part 9

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!

At last, the handsome house built near the river and set on hundreds of acres was finished. Jonathan and his bride Levinah were married July 15, 1779. They were among about 100 townspeople at the time, who lived in much simpler farmhouses, mostly scattered along the river valley.

Accompanying the newlyweds was Anna, Hunt’s daughter by a previous marriage. Her mother’s name is unknown, and quite likely she died from complications of childbirth, the common fate of many women at the time. Anna’s name, however, became well-known and is recognized still in Brattleboro, and Vernon.

In 1797, she married Dr. Perley Marsh of Hinsdale. Her dowry was “one good horse, three cows, and good household furniture which amounted to $600.” She and her husband soon moved into a large frame house (on today’s Brattleboro Road, Hinsdale) that rivaled in elegance the one she had left.

At the time, the insane were shut away, sometimes in dungeons or caves, or tied into chairs in their homes. Anna and Dr. Marsh deplored shut inhumane treatment. After her death in 1834, her will provided a sum of $10,000, “to be given for the purpose of erecting and support of a hospital for the insane in Windham County.” It was built and known as the Vermont Asylum for the Insane. (more…)

Vernon Fire Department seeks volunteers

Good help can be hard to find.

That’s especially true for the Vernon Fire Department during the weekday afternoons.

“Most of the people work daytime shifts,” Vernon Fire Chief Todd Capen said in an interview on Monday. “We are fortunate that we have employers some of the guys work for that do let them leave. That’s a very big bonus.”

Concerned, the department’s safety officer Jesse Jobin and Capen are looking at ways to reach out to the public and drum up some interest in volunteering.


May 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. Church email: Pastor: Rev. Bruce C. Burks,   Website. 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  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. E-mail: vuch@vernonunion.comcastbiz.netWebsite.  Facebook.