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Town Diary

Annual Town Meeting - May 2000

Town Diary - May 2000

Annual Town Meeting
On Monday, May 1, 2000 Barkhamsted held its annual Town Meeting and Budget Meeting at the Barkhamsted Elementary School on Ripley Hill Road.  With thirty-two residents in attendance, Town Clerk Maria Mullady recorded the minutes and First Selectman Michael D. Fox presided.

Above is a photo of the Barkhamsted Town Hall (white building) and the elementary school.  Many of the small meetings are held in the Town Hall, but large meetings such as the annual meeting are held in the school gym.

The Town Meeting was called to order by Mr. Fox at 7:00 pm.  With just three simple items on the agenda, the meeting lasted just five short minutes.


  • The Annual Report was accepted.

  • The Board of Selectmen was authorized to enter into agreement with the State as necessary for Town Aid and Dirt Road Appropriation and Local Capital Improvement Program.

  • Lisa Valentine was elected to serve on the Stanclift Cove Commission until June 30, 2003.

Immediately following the annual Town Meeting, Mr. Fox called the annual town Budget Meeting to order.  The fundamental components of the proposed 7.5 million dollar budget were:

Budget Category

2000-2001 Budget

% of Total Budget

Regional No. 7 High School & Middle School

$3.2 million


Barkhamsted Elementary School

$2.6 million


General Government

$1.5 million


Capital Expenditures




The meeting's only dissent came in the form of letter from Dr. Leon Reich, owner of the Mallory Brook Plaza, home to Ames department store and the 2000-seat Cinerom movie complex and Barkhamsted's second-largest taxpayer.  2000 was the year of the decennial property revaluation and Dr. Reich objected to the plaza's assessment of $3,327,700 (an increase of $503,410 or 18% over the previous assessment), citing the poor condition of the plaza before he took over in 1993 and the great improvements made to it since then.

In consideration of the new property valuations, the mill rate for Barkhamsted has been set at $29.1 per thousand.  That rate is up from 23.7 in fiscal 1999-2000 and contains a base rate of 28 and a fire assessment of 1.1.

The 7.5 million dollar budget passed overwhelmingly, with only one person voting against it.  The following table contains a random sample of items from Barkhamsted's 2000-2001 budget.  To put the current budget in historical perspective, consider the figures taken from 25 years ago (fiscal year 1975-1976).  Looking back nearly 50 years, the budget for fiscal year 1954-1955 contained just a few of these items.


Budget Line Item




Probate Court




Election Expense




Insurance Property/Casualty




Computer Expense:












Snow Plowing




Road Improvements




Resident State Trooper




Stanclift Cove




Northwest Regional No. 7

$3.2 million



Tuition, High School




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Published May 02 2000, 01:36 PM by Paul
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