Accusations of Misleading Voters in Middlebury, Vt.

Published 02/25 2014 10:38PM

Updated 02/25 2014 10:58PM

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. - On Town Meeting Day, people in Middlebury will decide whether to build new town offices and a recreation facility.

Now opponents of the project accuse the town of trying to mislead voters.

The plan calls for the town and Middlebury College to swap land. The aging facility would be demolished and a new one would be built elsewhere.

"I think we desperately need to do this," says Nancy Malcolm, chair of the Steering Committee.

People in Middlebury would pay $2-million and the rest, $5.5-million, would be picked up by the college.

"I think it's a total win-win for the Town of Middlebury," says Malcolm.

The newest issue is the town's attempt to explain the project to voters. The town spent about three-thousand dollars to mail out a flyer to people in town. It's the cost and especially what's written inside that has some people concerned.

Opponents including selectboard member Craig Bingham say the tax numbers are wrong and while the flier says the current facility has problems with "numerous code violations" none have ever been cited.

"It could just be sloppy drafting, I don't know. But it certainly does have the effect of misleading the voter," says Bingham

We took Bingham's concerns to Malcolm who helped approve the flyer.

"Do you think it's misleading? Are there some inaccurate parts of it?" asked FOX44/ABC22's Matt Austin.
"There is nothing misleading on it," says Malcolm.

Malcolm says tax numbers were only rounded slightly and despite no official code violations, the building likely has them.

Still, opponents want a correction sent out.
But the selectboard chair says that's not going to happen and stands by the flyer.

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