WILLIAMSTOWN -- A public forum will be held Thursday night to begin sorting out ways to address the town's capital needs while minimizing the impact on taxpayers.
Charles Fox, chairman of the Finance Committee, said Sunday that there are a number of major capital projects the town is facing, which couldn't possibly be realized all at the same time, or even in a five-year period.
"They're all pressing issues of need, especially Mount Greylock Regional High School. There is also the police station, fire station, the library and the Hoosac Water Quality District's wastewater treatment plant," he said.
While the wastewater treatment plant is in Williamstown, the Hoosac Water Quality District is funded by both Williamstown and North Adams and is subject to regulatory conditions set forth by the state Department of Environ ment Protection and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Mount Greylock Regional High School, which serves students in grades seven through 12, is funded by Williamstown and Lanesborough.
Fox said to further compound matters, the projects are distributed between two different governing entities -- the town and the Williamstown Fire District -- that each collect taxes from the same pool of residents. While the budget for the high school, library, police station and Hoosac Water Quality District fall under the town, the fire district is responsible for the fire department budget.
"I think more forums down the road will be absolutely necessary," he said. "It's important that we, as taxpayers of Williamstown, think globally about these issues."
John Notsley, chairman of the Prudential Committee, which oversees the fire district, said Monday that they will present the history of the fire station project at the forum, and Fire Chief Craig Pedercini will give a PowerPoint presentation about the need for a new fire station.
"We're the first ones on the mat, so to speak," he said.
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