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Pepperell’s Special Town Meeting will feature 12 warrant articles

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PEPPERELL — Voters will decide the fate of 12 warrant articles when they head to a special town meeting on Saturday, including two that pertain to the town’s conversion of streetlights to more sustainable LED lights.

The town would retrofit existing streetlights and pay for the cost with a seven-year financing plan. In total, the plan is expected to cost $267,915, the amount the town is hoping to appropriate from free cash.

The Special Town Meeting will begin at 9 a.m. at the Nissitissit Middle School, at 33 Chase Ave.

Article 2 asks voters to accept Crawford Lane and Red Pepper Lane as approved public ways.

Article 3 and Article 4 both pertain to the funding of collective bargaining agreements reached after the town’s budget process had ended.

In the case of article 3, it would appropriate $8,558 from available funds to fund the fiscal 2022 agreement between the Lawrence Library Staff Association, MLSA, MFT, AFT, AFL-CIO and Local 4028.

Article 4 would appropriate $21,000 from available funds to fund the International Association of Firefighters, Local 5018, collective bargaining agreement for fiscal 2022.

Article 5 asks voters to raise and appropriate $39,562 from available funds to supplement the fiscal 2022 Police Department salary and wage budget for post-employment expenses. The article pertains to the death of a department employee.

Article 8 and 9 are both asking voters to authorize five-year lease purchase financing agreements. If article 8 passes, the Fire Department would be authorized to acquire a new ambulance. Article 9 would authorize the Department of Public Works to acquire a new street sweeper.

Article 10 and 11 both ask voters to make changes to the fiscal 2022 Water Enterprise Fund Budget. The town is asking for “a sum of money” to be transferred from the Water Enterprise Fund Retained Earnings in article 10, to “offset” water rates in the fiscal 2022 fund budget.

Article 11 subsequently calls for a reduction in the fiscal 2022 Water Enterprise Fund Budget, but the warrant does not specify a reduction amount.

The final article on Saturday’s warrant will ask voters to approve the Community Preservation Act. The act is designed to protect and promote open space, historic places and natural resources.

If the proposal passes, a 1% annual real estate tax levy would be established for the properties laid out in the act. The tax would commence in fiscal 2023. Additionally, property owned or occupied by a person qualifying for low-income housing would be exempt from the tax.

To read the warrant in full, visit https://bit.ly/3GRvsu1.