‘We’re still hoping and praying we get Highgate back.’
SWANTON — The town selectboard reviewed 2017 budgets from Missisquoi Valley Rescue (MVR), the Swanton Village Fire Department and the town’s highway department at a special budget meeting Dec. 20.
MVR is requesting 6.4 percent more in “community support” from Swanton than in 2016, the fire department’s proposed budget is a 0.24 decrease from the prior year’s budget and the highway department’s proposed budget is a 0.2 percent increase.
MVR’s total proposed budget for 2017 is $507,010, more than $100,000 less than the previous year’s, which was $609,810. The biggest chunk of its budgeted revenue is “community support,” the amount MVR’s supported municipalities supply. MVR is requesting $249,000 from Swanton in 2017, $15,000 more than in the previous year.
That’s because two communities have previously supported MVR, Swanton and Highgate. But Highgate’s selectboard opted not to renew its contract with MVR in April, placing a new burden on Swanton. If Highgate still contracted with MVR, it would contribute 35 percent of MVR’s community support, leaving Swanton to pay only $161,850, 65 percent.
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