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Town Meeting Rejects Banna Station Funding

Several officials call the article financially irresponsible.

If the town of Seekonk is going to spend money to complete the restoration of the Banna Fire Station on Pine Street, the funding will most likely come from a debt exclusion tax approved next year by voters. Town Meeting on Tuesday rejected putting $550,000 toward the project from Seekonk's free cash fund. The vote was 77-56.

Supporters of the article stressed the need to finish the project, which is several years in the making and has been delayed by various setbacks, including a lawsuit. Selectmen Gary Sagar and Francis Cavaco said the station was needed to serve the town's north end, and reduce emergency response time. Fire Chief Alan Jack said the current response time is unacceptable.

Those opposed to the article, including a majority of the Board of Selectmen and the Finance Committee, said they support the project, but this is not the way to fund it. Town Meeting approved $750,000 for the project in 2009. Article opponents said adding more money to a project through free cash would create a dangerous precedent.

Other Town Meeting Actions included:

  • Unanimously approved putting $10,000 toward the construction of a Veterans Memorial Garden in front of Town Hall
  • Unanimously approved appropriating $80,000 to establish a Special Education Stabilization Fund.
  • Rejected a proposal to "sell, lease, exchange or otherwise convey" town property on 69 School St.

Go here to read Seekonk Patch's Town Meeting blog. Look for more information about Town Meeting actions on this site soon.

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