Friday, April 13, 2007
TM to vote on rehab of Honor Roll
At Town Meeting April 30, the Town Common Committee (TCC) will propose that Community Preservation Act (CPA) funds be used to rehabilitate and move the Honor Roll which now faces the rotary. The Honor Roll consists of two structures, the first erected in the 1940s to honor veterans of WWI and WWII, and the second added in the 1980s for Korean War veterans. The wooden Honor Roll is now in considerable disrepair; however, in order to use CPA funds, the original plan to replace the memorial will be changed to a reconstruction effort.
As reported at a TCC meeting March 27, the Community Preservation Committee (CPC) cannot allow funds earmarked for historic preservation to be used to replace or add structures. An earlier TCC plan envisioned a new memorial of granite or some other more permanent material, as suggested by the Selectmen in their preliminary review October 10, 2006. In addition, according to TCC Chair Rev.Tim Jensen, the Historical Commission found "many things it didn't like" in the conceptual sketch submitted by designer Nick Reed, including post-and-chain fencing and granite benches. Historical Commission (HC) Chair and TCC member Sylvia Sillers (who recused herself from the HC discussion) noted the Commission felt, "the Honor Roll is beautiful in its simplicity and has stayed the same for many years" and should be preserved more or less as is. The decision to use CPA funds was another reason for eliminating the benches and hardscape, as these were seen as additions, not preservation.
The TCC will ask Town Meeting for $22,000 in CPA funds as part of Article 18. The current plan is to fix up the Honor Roll and move it back six to eight feet to provide an area in front for people to gather. In addition, the slope around the flagpole would be graded to make it easier for townspeople to gather for ceremonial occasions such as Memorial Day and Fourth of July. According to Jensen, the landscaping details have not been finalized. The estimate is based on the original plan: the loss of the seating and other details is offset by the addition of the flagpole-area grading, so the cost is expected to be about the same.
If the funds are approved at Town Meeting, it is hoped construction can begin in the summer and be completed this fall so the grass can be reseeded and ready for Memorial Day 2008.
© 2007 The