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May 3, 2014

Salisbury voters face flurry of issues at Town Meeting

SALISBURY — Town Meeting voters will weigh in on numerous issues on May 19 from the town budget and an ordinance to protect against noisy neighbors, to funding a new park and zoning for medical marijuana facilities.

Town Meeting will be held at Salisbury Elementary School, beginning at 7:30 p.m.

With Article 3 of the warrant, Town Meeting will be asked to approve a budget of $20,898,109 to support the cost of running the town. The total includes $9,716,786 to pay Salisbury’s anticipated share of the Triton Regional School District’s operating budget.

The total represents about an $800,000 rise over this fiscal year’s budget of $20,065,266, which ends June 30. The increase is due to a rise in insurance and retirement costs, as well as higher educational assessments for Salisbury’s share at Triton, Whittier Regional Vocational Technical school, and the new school currently under construction in Middleton that will merger Essex Agricultural and Peabody Vocational High schools.

Article 22 and Article 25 seek approval to borrow money for the purposes of creating a new, multi-use recreational park, as well as a new public drinking water well, respectively.

Tentatively named the Partridge Brook Park, the facility would be located behind Salisbury Elementary School on town land. With new athletic fields and environmental educational options planned at the proposed park, the town has already received a state grant for $400,000 to develop the first phase, with the hope that more money will come from fundraising or other grants. Article 22 requests borrowing $863,000, at least about half of which will be paid back by the current grant.

Article 25 requests authorization to borrow $700,000 to build Well 8. The money will supplement $800,000 previously authorized by Town Meeting for the purpose at the Special Town Meeting on May 14, 2012.

Since two medical marijuana facilities are heading for Amesbury, it may seem superfluous, but after months of work the Planning Board is bringing forward Article 26, which are the zoning regulations for the siting of a medical marijuana facility in town.

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