Cummington OKs new budget, adds Select Board member at TM and election

  • Cummington saw a quiet annual Town Meeting and town election this May.

Staff Writer
Published: 5/17/2022 7:11:43 PM
Modified: 5/17/2022 7:09:57 PM

CUMMINGTON — Voters approved a $2.68 million town budget and changed the police chief’s pay at annual Town Meeting, then had a new member join the Select Board at the town election as both events attracted few residents earlier this month.

At the May 6 Town meeting, all 17 articles passed unanimously. The budget passed by voters was $2,680,772 and included changing the $15,000 stipend for the police chief to a $30,000 salary.

However, Chief Michael Perkins said that this change won’t really affect his compensation, as in the past he’s been paid both his stipend and an hourly rate, and his total pay has come out to around $30,000. Now, he will only be receiving a $30,000 salary.

In total, 33 voters attended Town Meeting.

“That was very low,” said Town Clerk Brenda Emerson-Camp.

The town election on May 9 featured no contested races on the ballot. However, Select Board Chair Eliza Dragon chose not to finish out her term, so her seat was filled in the election by June Lynds.

“I’m excited to be on board with the Select Board,” said Lynds. “It’s something I’ve been thinking about for a long time.”

Lynds, 63, the former co-operator of the PJ Video Center in Cummington, was born and raised in town.

Lynds has spent most of her career working for Head Start, and she’s looking to give back to her town on the Select Board. She’s also a Finance Committee member and a member of the Council on Aging.

“Jumping in feet first,” said Lynds. “I’ve already had calls and people checking in with me.”

As a Select Board Member, she said that she’s interested in the town retaining its rural character while at the same time exploring growth that could ease the tax burden on residents.

In total, 44 people voted in the May 9 election.

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