Williamstown Fire District to Seek $25M for Station Project

By Stephen DravisiBerkshires Staff
Print Story | Email Story
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The committee that oversees the town's fire district Thursday approved warrant article language seeking authority to borrow up to $25 million to build a new station on Main Street.
That is the number officials will seek on Feb. 28 at a special district meeting at Williamstown Elementary School.
Three members of the five-person Prudential Committee attended Thursday's special meeting to sign off on the language.
Chair David Moresi was joined by Joe Beverly and Alex Steel for a brief hybrid meeting at the current fire station on Water Street.
The $25 million will be sought to cover the cost of "the design, engineering, construction and equipping of a new fire station to be located at 562-580 Main Street," according to the article's language.
The draft warrant article language the Prudential Committee members received referenced $25 million. At the suggestion of Jim Kolesar, a member of the district's Building Committee, the panel added the words "up to" to emphasize the district's continued pursuit of cost savings and alternative funding sources, like grants and gifts.
All registered voters who live in Williamstown will be eligible to participate in the meeting on Feb. 28 in the elementary school gymnasium, which has a capacity of 800.
Two-thirds of voters at the meeting would need to vote in favor of the bond authorization Proposition 2 1/2 override in order for the project to proceed.
If the project were approved at the $25 million level, that would be larger than Williamstown's share of the $64.7 million addition/renovation project at Mount Greylock Regional School. The town's share of that project (after contributions from the Massachusetts School Building Authority) came to about $22 million.
As a school building project, the Mount Greylock rebuild needed a simple majority for the debt override, but it passed in Williamstown by a margin of 2,226 to 351, with about 84 percent of voters saying yes.
On Thursday, Moresi said the Williamstown Fire District still is working on an analysis of how its building project would affect local property tax rates. He said the tax impact numbers would be available well before the Feb. 28 meeting.
The Prudential Committee also discussed its continuing outreach to educate residents in advance of the decision, again referring members of the public to telecasts the district did in conjunction with the town's community access television station, Willinet, viewable on the station's website.

Tags: fire station,   prudential committee,   

iBerkshires.com welcomes critical, respectful dialogue; please keep comments focused on the issues and not on personalities. Profanity, obscenity, racist language and harassment are not allowed. iBerkshires reserves the right to ban commenters or remove commenting on any article at any time. Concerns may be sent to info@iberkshires.com.

Roam Finds New Home in Williamstown

By Stephen DravisiBerkshires Staff

Xtina Parks is moving her gallery Roam to Water Street. She opened it in 2018 on the Mass MoCA campus. 
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Artist and gallery owner Xtina Parks is excited about the future of her new neighborhood.
And she is just as excited about preserving its past.
"What is important to me is history and things that are important to New England," Parks said this week. "I'm originally from Springfield and have always loved architecture — historic buildings, buildings that are older.
"When we found out about this location and also that it has income potential with the existing income from apartments above and Gramercy Bistro, that got us excited."
View Full Story

More Williamstown Stories