Grafton Town Meeting approves TIF agreement, water treatment facility

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Grafton Town Meeting approves TIF agreement, water treatment facilityGRAFTON – Residents at Fall Town Meeting on Monday, Oct. 16, approved all 65 articles in the warrant.

The majority of the warrant – the first 41 articles – were revisions to the town’s bylaws. These were approved by consent agenda.

The closest vote of the night came with Article 53, a five-year Tax Increment Financing agreement with Feedback Earth. The agreement was for an addition for the facility, which transforms food waste into animal feed.

Under the TIF, Feedback Earth’s addition would be exempt from tax in the first year, going to 75% the second year; 50% in the third year; 25% in the fourth year, and 1% the fifth year.

“The TIF Committee has worked diligently to negotiate a fair and equitable agreement with Feedback Earth Inc. that will serve all parties,” the Finance Committee wrote in its recommendation in the warrant.

Some residents complained about the smell produced by the facility. One resident said there were 120 complaints to the Board of Health.

According to Town Administrator Evan Brassard, Feedback Earth fixed its deodorizer.

“The place is clean, and there are no rats,” said Select Board member Ray Mead.

Town Meeting approved the article 85-48.

There was also some discussion about the construction of a water treatment facility off Powerline Drive. The article would have the town enter a long-term lease with the Grafton Water District (GWD).

According to the article, “construction of this water treatment facility will improve water quality in the area of Powerline Drive, and all households serviced by that well.”

According to Robert Williams of the Grafton Water District, the facility would filter iron, manganese and PFAS from the groundwater.

Resident Linda Hutchins asked about the impact of the facility on the local wildlife, since building the facility would mean the removal of trees. Select Board member Andrew Jefferson said the town will discuss this with the GWD.

Town Meeting approved the article 121-8.

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