It’s not every day that an historic barn is picked up and moved to a new location, but that is exactly what happened Monday in Bolton. The iconic ‘East Barn’ of the former Preston-Lafreniere property (now owned by the State as part of Camel’s Hump State Park) was moved more than 60 feet to the north from its previous location at the edge of the Duxbury Rd. This move was part of barn stabilization efforts currently being undertaken by the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation.’ The East Barn is and English-style barn dating back to the early 1800’s and is one of three separate barns located on this site. The barn complex, as well as an adjacent homestead along with approximately 460 acres were acquired by the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation and added to Camel’s Hump State Park in 1991. Funding for this purchase was made available by the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board. The Lafreniere homestead and barn complex was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1998. The East Barn is a local landmark and is depicted on the Town Seal of Bolton.’ The homestead, including possibly the barn complex, is slated for sale by the State in the near future. According to Mike Fraysier, the Department’s Director of State Lands Administration, it’s important that some preliminary barn stabilization measures be undertaken at this time, so that this barn may be put to productive use in the future. ‘Regardless of whether the Department elects to include the barns as a part of the sale parcel or chooses to retain the barns in State ownership, the Department recognizes the historic significance of this barn and its importance to the Town of Bolton and felt it was important to undertake some stabilization measures now so that the barn is not lost,’ said Fraysier. The Department’s goal regarding barn stabilization is to complete the most critical measures that have the greatest potential for maximizing the barn’s useful life and would enhance the ability of the landowner (be it the State or a private party) to complete barn stabilization and restoration.’ The barn stabilization activities are being undertaken by Building Heritage which is serving as the Department’s contractor for this project. The barn has been jacked up, rotten posts and girts have been repaired or replaced, new sills have been installed, and a new foundation prepared about 40’ north of its previous location. ‘A major reason this barn was in such tough shape was due to its location immediately off the Duxbury Rd.’, said Eliot Lothrop of Building Heritage. Over the years, the road bed has been built up against the wall of the barn, resulting in substantial rotting of support posts. The barn was slid on steel rails to its new foundation today.’ The barn stabilization efforts are expected to be completed in November.
Personal injury lawyers are likely to find out next month whether the government is minded to revise the discount rate applied to damages awards. In a House of Lords debate last month, Conservative peer Lord Hodgson of Astley Abbotts said the Ministry of Justice will respond to its consultation on the issue by 3 August.Hodgson tabled a motion of regret at then-lord chancellor Liz Truss’ decision to amend the rate from 2.5% to -0.75% before the consultation had even started. He said the action was ‘draconian’ and a sign that Truss did not understand, or was not briefed on, the full impact of the decision.It was revealed during the debate that 135 responses were made to the consultation, which closed in May, but justice minister Lord Keen of Elie gave little away about the government’s response.’Underlying the consultation was the wish of the government to make sure that the way the rate is set is put on the firmest possible footing in future, so that we have a better and fairer system for claimants and defendants, and, in so doing, keeping true to the 100% principle—namely, that claimants are paid no more but no less than they should be,’ said Keen.’An announcement of the government’s conclusions will be made at the earliest possible opportunity. Of course, the interests of all parties concerned will be considered, and there will be an impact assessment.’Keen insisted Truss acted correctly by changing the rate before consulting, saying this was her legal obligation. To fail to act, he suggested, would be to have ‘knowingly maintained an inappropriate rate for what might have been a considerable period of time’.Hodgson urged the government to act decisively on what he called a ‘running sore’ and insisted it was ‘extraordinary’ for the lord chancellor to change the rate now when none of her predecessors had felt the need to do so since 2001.Speaking in the debate, former justice minister Lord Faulks said the position is now ‘profoundly unsatisfactory’ and he urged the rate be decided by a panel of experts rather than the lord chancellor.He added: ‘The situation that we now have is not fair to defendants; it is going to fall on those who have to pay increased premiums—often young and elderly motorists—and the NHS and government departments.’
By SCARLET O’ROURKE Staff Writer [email protected] City of South Padre Island met Wednesday, July 20, to discuss the upcoming 2012 fiscal year budget.The council listened as City Manager Joni Clarke presented numbers for various departments. As the list went on, council members felt the need to postpone all decisions on the budget until they have had the chance to examine all aspects of each department more closely and get the final numbers that have yet to be reported.Of the numbers reveled in the meeting, it is reported that the excess reserve fund calculation is set at $826,823 with the current budget rough draft and the street maintenance fund was projected at $35,783. To see this story in print, pick up a copy of the July 21 edition of the Port Isabel South Padre Press or check out our E-edition by clicking here. RelatedFrom the Desk of the Port Isabel City ManagerSpecial to the PRESS By JARED HOCKEMA Port Isabel City Manager The PRESS recently published an article about the City’s financial performance in Fiscal Year 2013-2014, in which the city incurred losses of $492,731 in the General Fund. This loss followed a previously-reported General Fund deficit of $889,176 in Fiscal…September 2, 2016In “News”SPI opts out of tax rate hikeBy CRAIG ALANIZ Port Isabel-South Padre PRESS The South Padre Island City Council held a public hearing for the 2012-2013 tax rate. The council approved the effective tax rate of .252701, which would bring in the same income as last year. The council did not feel a tax rate hike…August 30, 2012In “News”SPI City Staff cuts budget for upcoming yearBy ABBEY KUNKLE Special to the PRESS Considering that the fiscal year is nearing its end, the City Council met last week for a presentation from Finance Director Rodrigo Gimenez regarding the budget for the upcoming year. Gimenez started by covering the General Fund, which is expected to have approximately…June 26, 2015In “News” Share