Astronomy Picture of the Day

Monday, November 22, 2010

Chapter Two

So I sat down to proceed. My mind has been searching for the right words. Like veins of thoughts. They go this way and that, meandering along and merging sometimes or dividing from other thoughts.
I reviewed all the emails in the folder I labelled
Monkton Scandal. I suppose to label it what is was. After I got over being stunned (see posts on sprachlos), and angry,
I started just thinking.
Science was always my favorite route.
Establish the known.
Identify what is not known.
Search for truth, a formula, an explanation, justification.
Then look for validation, replication with experimentation.
I thought for sure the paper would send me a copy of the ad. It had my name in it. I thought they might think, wow, 9 months late is a little soon to be selling the girl's place? They gave me a run around or something. I gave that one up early on.
Back to truth searching.
I got the town reports and began a spreadsheet of all the property liens sold by the town of Monkton since  the new policy in 2004. It was strange. Only 2 sales had been recorded. Many were up to 5 years late and were not even making payments.

I tried to put the spreadsheet here but will work on that one later. Suffice it to say for now, in about 5 years 2 sales occured:
one for $1455 and one for $163.

And this year I compiled these snippets of the minutes I could access:

Snips of Monkton,VT Selectboard Town Meetings.

March 9, 2009,

First meeting of new 5 member town select board.

“T. Cunningham asked about tax sales of properties, as mentioned at the Town Meeting on 3/3/09 by Delinquent Tax Collector Roderick Burritt. T. Cunningham suggested a lien be placed on any subject property immediately. J. Phillips mentioned that a lien may spur action by the homeowner. The Board discussed this issue in some detail. P. Norris mentioned title searches being made by lawyers. T. Cunningham asked if properties in duress have mortgages on them. No action taken “

March 23, 2009

“g- Delinquent taxes: there is a supra lien on all delinquent taxes by the Town of Monkton. Therefore, it is not necessary to file a lien the land records. The Delinquent Tax policy should be reviewed and updated. Peter Norris will review and make proposed changes to present to the board for the next meeting. “

April 13, 2009

“Delinquent Taxes are still about $88,000. Rod Burritt has indicated that he would like to come to the Select Board to see about starting Tax Sale proceedings. “

June 8, 2009

“Informal Report on ANAC Status. Stephen Pilcher attended a meeting of the Agricultural and Natural Areas Committee and gave an informal report of their progress. The ANAC committee has two ongoing projects, one which has completed the application process and one which is waiting the results of the state budgeting process. Both projects are being coordinated by the Vermont Land Trust and seem very beneficial to the Town of Monkton. “

Mary’s notes.[I believe I saw the minutes where Stephen Pilcher attended ANAC committee and was talking about tax sales. Those minutes are no longer posted and Stephen Pilcher’s name does not appear in the ANA C meeting minutes.]

June 22, 2009

“Delinquent Taxes. The Town of Monkton continues to have a large amount of delinquent taxes due. The Town is currently owed $76,000 in delinquent taxes. Rod Burritt, the Delinquent Tax Collector, will start the process of putting delinquent properties up for tax sale starting July 1st. “

September 14, 2009

• Tax Sale - This will take place on October 13, 2009.

October 12, 2009

• Agent to Deed Real Estate Appointment - Motion to nominate L. Stephen Pilcher as Agent to Deed Real Estate was made by Peter Norris and seconded by Anne Layn. This motion was unanimously approved “

October 26, 2009

Review of Tax Sale

The Town of Monkton conducted a tax sale on October 13. Four parcels were sold and each was sold for more than the amount of delinquent taxes, interest, fee and cost. The Town of Monkton will hold the excess amounts in four separate accounts for the benefit of the property owner. “

November 9, 2009

“Review Minutes of October 12th and October 26th Select Board Meetings. Review of minutes postponed until next Select Board meeting. “

November 26, 2009

“Review Minutes of October 12th , October 26th , and November 9th Select Board Meetings.

Minutes of previous Select Board meetings are always available in Town Hall. They are posted

at the Select Board desk and also filed by the Town Clerk. Motion to approve October 12th

minutes moved by Stephen Pilcher, seconded by Peter Norris. Motion approved unanimously.

Motion to approve October 26th minutes moved by Terry Cunningham, seconded by Stephen

Pilcher. Motion passed unanimously. Some discussion of the curb cut process mentioned in the

minutes. Stephen Pilcher to write an email to Mike Bayer about the issue. Motion to approve

November 9th minutes moved by Stephen Pilcher, seconded by Terry Cunningham. Motion

passed unanimously.”

January 11, 2010

“Review of Delinquent Tax Sale

Several properties were not in the tax sale due to a conflict of interest with the Town Attorney. The Town Attorney also only included lots where more than $2000 in delinquent taxes had accrued. The Town of Monkton Policy for Payment of Property Taxes and for Collection and Payment of Delinquent Taxes which states that “typically property will not be included in a tax sale, until at least $250.00 in total delinquencies have accrued”. The Delinquent Tax Collector is requested to find an attorney that does not have a conflict of interest with the remaining parcels including those parcels that were not included in the original tax sale because they fell below the attorney’s $2000 threshold and to hold another tax sale. “

January 18, 2010

“The next topic was Delinquent Taxes. The Town is currently owed

$132,000 in delinquent taxes as of December 31st 2009. All of these monies are budgeted to be

received by the Town since all parcels which are not paid will be sold at tax sale.”

March 8, 2010

(note: No minutes posted in February 2010 at all.)

“Review Minutes of February 22nd Select Board Meeting. … Minutes of the February 22nd Select Board were approved with amendments without objection.”

Stay tuned.

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