Rockingham hears Recreation Dept., electric charging station updates

ROCKINGHAM, Vt. – On Tuesday, Nov. 3, Rockingham Selectboard heard updates from the Rockingham Recreation Department and the progress of installing electric charging stations at the Waypoint Center.

Parks and Recreation Director Ryan Stoodley explained the purchase rationale of a mini split heat pump costing $5,800. Chair Gaetano Putignano asked if the purchase was budgeted.

Stoodley explained he “had money this year” and the heat pump would save propane by quickly heating the recreation center during parties while also saving energy in the summertime.

Stefan Golec wondered about the cost analysis on payback. Stoodley said the savings from the light upgrades and removal of the vending machines had cut electricity costs, and he anticipated the pump would save energy.

Peter Golec questioned the $5,300 expense on tennis court lights. Stoodley said they were on the list of future projects that he and Chuck Wise, interim manager at the time, had discussed and said the overall budget is “going to be way under still.”

Putignano asked about rope tow status and Stoodley said the inspection paperwork would be submitted within the next two weeks. Stoodley explained the rope was installed early because the trail was open, and he thought the increased use on the hill would help with vandalism.

Stoodley recommended they continue the Saxtons River Recreation lease because they operate mostly on donations. He said providing lifeguards and funds was “a good gesture.”

Susan Hammond asked Development Director Gary Fox on the status of the electric charging stations at the Waypoint Center. Fox explained they had procured service from Green Mountain Power to the two sites and completed the electrical work and excavation.

There will be two stations installed this month: a direct current fast charge on the east side of the Island lot for train station access and a Level 2 charger on the west side for Canal House residents and shops downtown. Installation of equipment, pads, and protective bollards are set for construction beginning next week with anticipated completion in December.

Fox said the total cost for the charging stations was $65,000 and grant reimbursement of $58,000 will be submitted once the stations are completed and operable.

The Rockingham Selectboard meetings are held on the first and third Tuesdays in the Lower Theater of the Bellows Falls Opera House at 6 p.m. Board meetings are also available online through Fact TV.

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