Hartford Voters Agree To Replace Iconic Covered Bridge

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(Host) The voters in Hartford opened their wallets last night, and went into debt to replace a bridge and a library destroyed by Tropical Storm Irene.

They also approved a $4 million school bond.

VPR’s Charlotte Albright reports.

(Albright) The $1.1 million bridge bond will finance the replacement of an iconic covered bridge in Quechee.

FX Flinn lobbied for the bridge project as he knocked on doors in Hartford to rally support for his own select board candidacy. He won on both counts and is now putting bridge construction at the top of a long "to-do" list for town government.

(Flinn) "One of the most important ones will be to see to it that the bridge project really gets off to a good start and that we really keep the pedal to the metal, as it were, to make sure that we get that bridge up and running before winter comes late this year."

Flinn ran with two other victorious candidates, Bethany Fleishman and Simon Dennis, and he says he hopes all three will bring a new spirit of community engagement to the selectboard.  

A Trustee of the West Hartford Library says he’s thrilled that voters decided to borrow up to $500,000 – though it’s estimated that FEMA will pick up a chunk of that bill – to move the West Hartford library farther away from the banks of the river that swamped it back in August. Thomas Hazen says the library was always a pet project of his mother, who recently passed away.

(Hazen) "Yeah and it was dear to her heart. Now it’s my heart I guess. "

(Albright) Hazen says he was worried that voters would not approve the re-construction bond, so he sees the results as proof that West Hartford residents see the Library as the center of their tiny, once waterlogged community.

For VPR News, I’m Charlotte Albright

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