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Town looking at Coronavirus response grants


May 20, 2020
The town is receiving COVID-19 grants as some town facilities are preparing for modified re-openings.

Last Wednesday, the board held a public hearing to accept $10,143.91 in funds from the US Department of Health and Human Services for healthcare response or lost revenue due to COVID-19.

Town Administrator Scott Dunn said the grant was already placed in the town's account.

"Of all the grants out there dealing with this virus issue, this probably has the most strings and the most red tape," Dunn said. "Very unlikely that we're going to use much of this, but I would encourage you to accept it nonetheless. As opportunities arise, we will cert apply those funds."

The hearing was closed with no comment. The selectmen voted unanimously in favor of accepting the funds and using them for their intended purpose.

The board has scheduled public hearings to accept two more grants at its next meeting on May 27. One is $95,760 from the COVID-19 Stipend Program for first responders, which will provide a $300 weekly stipend for all full time employees and $150 a week for part time employees. Another is to accept $171,200 from the Governor's Office for Emergency Relief & Recovery to be used for the reimbursement of COVID-19 related expenses incurred from March 1-Aug. 31.

Both hearings will take place during the May 27 selectmen's meeting starting at 7 p.m. The public may attend and give comment in person, but that will be is strongly discouraged.

With the governor's Stay at Home order modified, a number of town facilities are revising their public access policies.

The fire department has relaxed its policy on visitors to the station. Fire chief Steve Carrier said as the Stay at Home order was lightened and some businesses are reopening, the decision was made to allow visitors in the station under certain conditions.

"We're just at the point where we feel safe enough in our environment to allow people into the lobby to conduct business," Carrier said.

People are required to stay in the lobby and wear a mask. Carrier said people so far have been. compliant.

Board Chair Chan Eddy also said the library is now offering curbside pickup of materials.

The Public Works department is now changing their shifts from two shifts to having all the crew on staggered shifts.

So far, there is no change to customer service in the Town Clerk/Tax Collector's office or the police department. Eddy did say depending on orders from the governor they hope to open the Town clerk/Tax Collector's office and the DPW to the public by June 1.

Town hall is still closed to all outside groups. Eddy said aside from the selectmen, the other town boards and committees are meeting infrequently and using electronic means.

The restrooms at Glendale will be open with signs saying they will be sanitized once a day and people can use the facilities at their own risk.

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Varney Smith
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