Warning issued to Orange County ex-sheriff

PITTSFORD—The Vermont Criminal Justice Council has voted to issue a written warning to longtime Orange County Sheriff Bill Bohnyak for using a deputy to handle criminal cases, including sensitive sex crimes, when she was not certified to investigate them.

Books, learning inspire new Baldwin librarian

WELLS RIVER—Melissa Beaulieu, of Ryegate, is the new librarian at the Baldwin Memorial Library. She officially began her new position on Jan. 4. She succeeds Peggy Hewes, who had been at the library for 30 years before stepping down in December.

Piermont Village School mulls tuition change

PIERMONT—Piermont’s high school tuition policy took center stage during the board meeting last week.
Tuition at some schools has exceeded the cap set by Piermont voters nearly 20 years ago. The rising costs and how to handle them dominated a lengthy discussion at last week’s school board meeting.

Tax rate set in Haverhill

WOODSVILLE—After an unprecedented standoff between Haverhill and a state agency delayed tax bills and thrust local entities into a cash crunch, the impasse appears to have been resolved. Town officials announced that a tax rate had been set for 2022. Property tax bills were to be mailed out this week after a clerical error delayed the mailings.

Rivendell District opts for status quo budget

ORFORD—A divided school board has tentatively proposed an 11.35% increase in spending next year to maintain the district’s existing programming. On Jan. 17, the school board reviewed alternative drafts of the proposed 2023-2024 Rivendell School District budget. Administrators had distributed two proposals for their consideration.

In Times Past: Lost to Technology

At noon on Wednesday, Jan. 31, 1951, eight Bradford women lost their jobs.
It was a scene replicated at locations throughout the valley in the 1950s, as local telephone operators were supplanted by an automated dialing system.
The loss of the human touch did not go unnoticed. Switchboard operators were hailed as “uncrowned heroes of patience, gentleness, and courtesy.”
Gone was the “human aspect of a mutual friend,” who often knew which store you wanted when you asked for “the grocery store.” Gone was the forerunner of 9-1-1, where quick thinking saved lives and much more in the face of a fire or other emergency. Gone was a valuable source of local information and perhaps, if the caller was lucky, a bit of local gossip.
Their jobs were forever lost to technology.

Court documents reveal details in 2021 Orford murder

NORTH HAVERHILL—A Lyme man who allegedly shot and killed his cousin in Orford in 2021 for “running her mouth” was despondent about the imminent demise of his marriage at the time of the killing. Brooke Goodrich, 25, was at home alone on Route 10 in Orford on Nov. 20, 2021 when she opened the door for her cousin, Lance Goodrich, now 36, who shot her in the head one time with his 9mm pistol, according to court documents.

Haverhill Selectboard chair resigns ahead of town meeting

NORTH HAVERHILL—The selectboard chair in Haverhill has resigned.  Fred Garofalo submitted his resignation on Jan. 14 in a brief letter addressed to vice chair Steve Robbins.

Simpson to represent himself at federal trial

BURLINGTON—A federal judge said on Jan. 12 that he has found a St. Johnsbury man charged with abducting a woman, crossing state lines, and sexually assaulting her in front of her son in Windsor County four years ago, competent to stand trial in federal court.
Senior Federal Judge William K. Sessions III said he also has found Everett A. Simpson, 45, formerly of St. Albans, competent to represent himself at the trial.

For now, some riders avoid Newbury Park & Ride

NEWBURY—Some commuters are abandoning Newbury’s Park and Ride citing personal safety concerns due to poor lighting and property loss. The park and ride, one of 48 in the state, is located at 100 Newbury Crossing Road just east of Route 5. Workers, students, and others park their vehicles to ride public transportation, such as Tri-Valley Transit, or carpool, mostly for destinations south.