Dorset voters elect Salsgiver for Select Board

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DORSET — Jim Salsgiver easily outdistanced incumbent Jack Stannard to win the three-year seat on the Select Board during Town Meeting voting Tuesday.

Salsgiver defeated Stannard 255 to 70 to capture the board seat.

A couple of hours after polls closed, Salsgiver said he was looking forward to getting started.

"I'm really pleased to get a chance," Salsgiver said. "I'm looking forward to getting into it. I've got a lot to learn. There are some really neat things ahead of us."

Stannard was upbeat following the loss and said he's already planning his next campaign.

"Maybe it's a little bit early to announce it officially," Stannard said two hours after the polls closed. "I'm going to be running next year. I'm going for the three-year seat next year."

Stannard said he was confident Salsgiver would do well.

"I congratulate Jim," Stannard said. "I'm not unhappy with him. I think he'll do a good job and that's what I care about."

Stannard said he didn't have any big plans and would probably going to be at a lot of Select Board meetings over the next year.

Two other board members, Liz Ruffa and Megan Thorn, were each re-elected to their 1-year seats. They both ran uncontested.

Voters passed the Dorset budget 284-33.

All Taconic & Green Regional School District items passed as well.

Monday night, Dorset held its floor meeting where voters were equally generous.

Every item on the floor meeting warning passed overwhelmingly. In fact, only one item received a nay vote.

After a lengthy discussion, voters passed the $20,000 requested appropriation for the Dorset Players. The group asked for that amount, 10 times its normal $2,000

request, because of serious roof work that needs to be done at the Dorset Playhouse.

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Several people spoke in favor of the appropriation, hailing the Dorset Players as a great benefit to the town.

Kim Beaty, board chairwoman for the Dorset Theater Festival, said the Dorset Playhouse's reputation is growing in Boston and New York to a great deal on the Playhouse itself.

"We work hard to be self-sustaining, but we cannot give it all the love it needs on an ongoing basis," Beaty said. "The roof protects everything that happens beneath it. Reward the Dorset Players for their years of dedication to our community."

Rosanna Moran, principal of The Dorset School, said her school's music program has been allowed to hold its winter concert at the Playhouse.

"For a child to have the opportunity to perform in a real theater is really just priceless for us," Moran said.

The building needs about $80,000 worth of roof repair.

The only person to speak against the funding in any way was Terry Tyler, who said he once played a gangster on stage and suggested his question may not make him any more popular.

"I would like the assurance that they won't come back year after year for this amount," Tyler said. "I think an increase of this amount for one year is acceptable, but I'd like assurance it won't be every year."

Don Hayward, who is on the board of directors for the Dorset Players, said he couldn't make that promise.

"I don't know. I do know, we have a lot of needs," Hayward said, adding that the board's capital campaign would, hopefully, come through. "I can promise the board will do the best it can to maintain the playhouse for this community."

When the vote was held, one lone voice was a nay.

Every other appropriation request was passed by voice vote without any opposition.

The Dorset Marble Preservation Association was approved for a $15,000 appropriation.

Roger Squire represented the association to voters.

Tyler said he supported it.

"I was against this project when it started," Tyler said. "They have done a fantastic job. I would encourage you to vote in favor of this. They've spent it wisely and done it well."

Contact Darren Marcy at dmarcy@manchesterjournal.com or by cell at 802-681-6534.


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