Lyndon says ‘no’ to cable franchise fee

by Dave Cary
Review Correspondent

LYNDON — Taking a view that a tax is a tax no matter how well it is camouflaged, the Lyndon Town Board last Wednesday turned down the chance to impose a “franchise fee” on cable TV providers that serve the town.

State and federal statutes permit this. The fee would be added to the cable recipient’s bill, and then forwarded to the town, meaning it is actually paid by the TV users and not the TV provider.

In other words, a tax on residents, plain and simple.

Clerk Rhonda Klatt said that communications she had received from the cable company indicated this could mean an additional $10,000-$12,000 per year for the town. In brief discussion, however, no board member spoke for the proposal and a motion to not adopt the proposal carried unanimously.

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Department of Public Works Chief Al Steiner reported that seal coating will be done in the upcoming season on Mill Road from County F to Clearview Road, to complete the work done last year with cold mix.

Blacktopping, he said, will possibly be done on Cedar north to County U and also stretches of Sumac Road. The latter are from Hillwind to County E, from E to Country Aire and on to Oak Road. Also worked on will be two intersections along County N.

Steiner said the road committee had decided to remove a short roadway that exists between Silver Creek-Cascade Road and Lake Ellen Drive. This will be handled, he said, by a private contractor.

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The board appointed Board of Appeals members Kelly Roll and Katie Roberts to terms ending in 2020 and 2021 respectively. The difference was attributed to not wanting terms of all board members to expire at the same time.

Town Hall rental refunds were granted to Anne Gilbert, Mary Van Ess-De Groff and Amy Pietsch.

It was explained that $50 of the $150 rental fee is a sort of security deposit that the renter is entitled to if the hall is left in good shape.

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