New vehicles drive capital budget request

A large dump truck and other new town vehicles form the bulk of the proposed operating capital budget for fiscal year 2020.
The selectmen’s budget calls for $1,009,897 in capital expenditures, which is $172,374 less than the current fiscal year.
The capital budget is used primarily for the purchase of equipment and machinery. “We keep a tight ship,” First Selectwoman Lynne Vanderslice told The Bulletin. “We utilize our equipment until it has to be replaced. We don’t ask for it ahead of time,” she said.
The largest slice of the capital budget is $357,000 for the public works department, and includes $175,000 for a large dump truck, $50,000 for a departmental truck, $24,000 each for a plow and a sander for the truck, $50,000 for a hot asphalt box for road work, and $34,000 for an equipment trailer.
Town vehicle expenses include $112,000 for police vehicles, $75,000 for fire apparatus, and $45,000 for staff vehicles.
Another heavy-duty request is $115,000 for mowers/grounds equipment for the parks and recreation department.
Computer hardware and software upgrades are significant in the budget request:

  • $65,000 is budgeted for computer software, primarily to upgrade computer servers and operating systems from Windows 7 to Windows 10.

  • $46,000 is budgeted for computer hardware for information systems.

  • $9,780 is budgeted for computer hardware for the fire department.

  • $5,000 is budgeted for the town’s GIS computer program.

In other expenses, $75,000 is requested for repairs for Fire Station 2. Originally budgeted at $1 million to be funded over the course of several years, the renovation plan has been reviewed and is expected to come in significantly less than originally requested. The town is requesting $75,000 for 2019-20 for a portion of the renovation work.
Public safety requests include $32,000 for communications equipment for central dispatch; $24,661 for medical equipment for the paramedic service; $14,700 for police protective equipment, weapons, medical equipment and radar equipment; and $8,000 for fire rescue equipment, protective equipment, and medical equipment; and $8,000 for mobile radios for canine control.
The proposed operating capital budget of $1,009,897, combined with the $32,801,407 proposed town operating budget, totals $33,881,304, a 0.92% increase over the current year.