On Monday, Nov. 25 at 7:45 pm, the Thetford selectboard will discuss whether to join neighboring towns in funding a regional energy coordinator. Your support, in person and by email, is vital.
The federal government is not acting on climate change, and our state is not on track to meet its energy goals. Town employees and volunteers are doing everything they can, but they are often at capacity. Nonprofits and state programs have limited resources.
While Thetford on its own cannot afford to hire an additional staff person to help our community address its energy needs, we can come together with neighboring towns to co-fund a shared Energy Coordinator: a position that larger towns like Hartford and Brattleboro have already created for themselves.
This regional position could help Thetford and other small towns with weatherization, transportation, grant writing, and more, but first we need the Thetford Selectboard to add it to the 2020 Town budget. Five of the seven towns included in the proposal for this new position have already done so. The Norwich Selectboard is discussing the Regional Energy Coordinator proposal at their December 11th meeting, and the Thetford Selectboard is discussing this topic on Monday night at 7:45 pm.
If the Selectboard does add this line item to the town budget, which would cost taxpayers just under $15,000 (or half the cost of a culvert repair the town performed after a spring storm this year), then voters will be able to make the final decision at Town Meeting Day. The staff position, with boots on the ground, would begin on July 1, 2020.
The Green Fleet Policy passed in Thetford because of overwhelming support from residents, and now we need that support again. Will you attend the Selectboard meeting on Monday night to support this proposal? If you are unable to attend, will you please email the Selectboard? This proposal has already been backed by the Thetford Energy Committee, but residents are the loudest and most important voice an elected official can hear.
Please show up and support this proposal! Thank you.