Residents Question Council on Tax Relief, Speeding, Term Limits-Haley Paton Dufour

Issues ranging from tax relief to speed indicators were raised during the Public Comment portion of Monday night’s Town Council meeting.

Resident Bob Napolitano asked the Council about the possibility of using money coming into Londonderry from taxes on the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport area for tax relief. The majority of the airport is in Londonderry.

Councilors said there is no direct way to give tax relief to citizens, as extra tax revenue is put into the Undesignated Fund Balance. Spending of such money must be approved by the Town.

Resident Martin Srugis asked what further improvements would be made in the Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District and how long the TIF District is set to last, noting that some TIF Districts can be set up to run for 10 years.

The Council said the local TIF Districts are set up for short runs, the idea being that another TIF District can be opened later if necessary, and said one has already been closed.

Deb Paul, owner of Nutfield Publishing, which publishes the Londonderry Times, told the Council that detailed minutes should be kept by the Safety Committee and be given to the Planning and Zoning Boards. She noted that the chair of the Safety Committee is often called at home about issues and there is no record of concerns raised during such calls. Paul said that as the town grows and traffic increases, it will become more important to keep track of safety issues raised by residents.

She also asked the council to review her advisory-only citizen’s petition, presented to the voters last March, to look at the use and membership terms of non-land use boards. Her petition, which recommended the Town Council propose an amendment to the Town Charter to set term limits on all non-land use boards, was non binding on the Town Council. The article had no tax rate impact. The Council voted not to recommend the article on a 1-4 vote, but the voters approved the advisory article.

The Council suggested that Paul have the town attorney review the petition and gather information on where the state stands on the issue, at which point the Council will review the petition.

Ann Chiampa offered praise for the speed indicator in use on Mammoth Road and asked about the possibility of adding speed indicators to other areas of concern around town.

The Council said they are looking into getting more, possibly portable models, and that feedback they have received about the current speed indicators has been very positive.

Although the current speed indicators are in school zones, police are aware of problem speeding areas in other parts of town. Chiampa mentioned Stonehenge Road and Hardy Road as two specific areas of concern.

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