Friday, August 29, 2014

The Last Straw for Santa's Land?

PUTNEY -- The state wants to take the animals away from the owners of Santa's Land, and two employees of the embattled theme park are facing charges of violating their conditions of release after an inspection found unsafe conditions among the animals living on the grounds.
Lillian Billewicz, 56, the owner of Santa's Land, and her employee, Brian Deistler, 25, were in Windham County Criminal Court Thursday. They pleaded not guilty to five violations of their conditions of release for not following a written care plan provided for the animals by Dr. Tammy McNamara of the Vermont-New Hampshire Veterinary Clinic.
Billewicz and Deistler are facing six months in prison, and a $1,000 fine for each charge.
Windham County Deputy State's Attorney Susan Cay requested that the Windham County Humane Society take possession of the animals.
The judge said he was receptive to the request, but wanted to schedule a one-hour hearing before deciding if Billewicz would have to relinquish possession and control of the animals at Santa's Land.
That hearing has not yet been scheduled.
Billewicz and Deistler were both arraigned on the charges of animal cruelty on April 29 following a March 1 visit by Windham County Sheriff Cpl. Melissa Martin.
Martin, during her visit found 18 dead animals at Santa's Land.
At the April 29 arraignment, as a condition of their release, Billewicz and Deistler were ordered to follow a care plan for the animals, which included providing clean water and adequate food, clean stalls and improvements to the living stalls.
But during a series of unannounced visits over the past few months Martin discovered a number of violations to the written plan.
According to Martin's affidavit, on July 12 the water tub for three donkeys had a green tint to it and "the water was laced with mosquito larvae, pine needles and algae."
Martin returned on July 25 at around 10 a.m. Billewicz and Deistler had not yet arrived and Martin stated in the affidavit that none of the animals had food.
When Billewicz and Deistler arrived later that day they said they had fed the animals "doubly" the day before.
Martin counted the hay bales before she left, making a note that there were 22 bales of hay in the loft.
When she returned on July 29 the water tub in the deer enclosure was dirty, and she noted that the hay in the loft had not dwindled.
Billewicz told Martin that she had 39 bales of hay delivered by Seth Holton on July 24, but when Martin contacted Holton, he said he only delivered 25 bales, and he said when he made the delivery Billewicz was completely out of hay.
Holton called Martin on July 30 and said two checks Billewicz sent to him were returned for insufficient funds.
In her affidavit Martin claims that the thinner goats were supposed to be separated during feeding, which she said did not occur.
Martin received several text messages from Deistler on Aug. 1 stating that "The same hay has been there for over a month and (Billewicz) keeps flipping it. It's junk and needs to be changed."
Martin became concerned in early August when she noticed a change in behavior among the animals.
Martin writes that in July the goats would only acknowledge her when she was petting them, but by early August the goats followed her making "goat noises," until she left.
The deer, as well, changed their behavior.
The deer, Martin said, used to stay away when she visited, but through late July and August they would flock to her as she entered their pen.
"It was evident that Billewicz had started to portion the hay again and has been for at least a few weeks," Martin wrote.
Santa's Land was also visited by U.S. Department of Agriculture Veterinary Medical Officer Steven Nussbaum on July 9.
Nussbaum found a number of violations that threatened Santa's Land's USDA license.
Nussbaum found several of the deer in poor body condition, dangerous fencing that could cause injury to the animals, poor sanitary conditions and an inadequate veterinary plan.
Nussbaum wrote that Santa's Land had 90 days to come into compliance.
Following Nussbaum's inspection, and the deteriorating conditions she found, Martin ordered the arrest of Billewicz and Deistler for violating their conditions of release.
They are scheduled back in court on Sept.16 to answer to the charges of violating their conditions for release.
Howard Weiss-Tisman can be reached at or 802-254-2311, ext. 279. Follow him on Twitter @HowardReformer.

Weathersfield Police Department - Calls for Service - 8/17/14 to 8/24/14

For the week of 8-17-2014 to 8-24-2014 the Weathersfield Police Department had the following calls for service:


3200 Accident-Damage - DMV Report 3
3617 Careless Negligent Motor Veh 1
3619 DLS Criminal 2
ANPR Animal Problem 1
ASST Agency Assist 1
CDIS Citizen Dispute 1
CITA Citizen Assist 1
FDAS Fire Dept Assist 2
PSC Suspicious Person/Circumstance 2
TCNR Traffic Crash Non-Reportable 2
OVIOL Traffic Stops 30

Total Incidents for This Agency: 51

Arrests compared to:
01-01-2013 to 08-17-2013: 9
01-01-2014 to 08-17-2014: 55
Calls compared to:
01-01-2013 to 08-17-2013: 430
01-01-2014 to 08-17-2014: 805

Burglary, Unlawful Trespass & Grand Larceny

CASE#: 14WF00809
OFFICER(S): Officer Jonathan Norton
DATE/TIME: 8-24-14 / 22:33 hours
LOCATION: VT Route 131 in Amsden
VIOLATION: Burglary, Unlawful Trespass, & Grand Larceny
ACCUSED: Joshua Crowson
AGE: 23
SUMMARY OF INCIDENT: On this date Officer Norton responded to a reported burglary of a residence. During the investigation, Officer Norton was able to locate most of the stolen items, identified and arrested Mr. Crowson. He was cited into Vermont Superior Court, Windsor Criminal Division for above charges.
COURT DATE: 10-07-2014
COURT: Windsor Criminal Division

Enabling Consumption by Minors

CASE#: 14WF00785
OFFICER(S): Officer Jonathan Norton
DATE/TIME: 8-16-14 / 23:56 hours
LOCATION: Butterfield Hill Road
VIOLATION: Enabling Consumption by Minors
ACCUSED: Patrick Keeley
AGE: 20
SUMMARY OF INCIDENT: On this date Officer Norton with the assistance of two State Troopers out of the Rockingham Barracks responded to a possible underage party on Butterfield Hill Road. Officers were able to contain approximately 20 individuals ranging in age from 15 to 23 years old. 12 Minors were issued violations for illegal possession of alcoholic beverages by consumption and Mr. Keeley was cited into Vermont Superior Court, Windsor Criminal Division for hosting the party.
COURT DATE: 10-07-2014
COURT: Windsor Criminal Division

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Potluck and Celebration of Time on the Land

A Sense of Place

For great food and great stories, the Weathersfield Land Preservation Association (WLPA) invites everyone to a potluck and storytelling celebration of land.
Thursday evening, September 18, 6 pm, at the Weathersfield Center Church.
Join us to celebrate and raise awareness of the land, its many functions in our communities and good stewardship, no matter what we do on the land.
Why bring people together to celebrate time on the land?
Land and land use can be something to celebrate, but it is also sometimes contentious.
For example, hikers might complain about mountain bikes eroding their trails; fishing folks might complain about pleasure boats; real estate people and builders might complain about land owners who restrict building to preserve fields and forests; … the land could tell lots of stories of contention, but with some recognition of each other’s’ priorities and of good land stewardship, we can preserve a sense of place, understanding that others have a sense of place as well. So our purpose is to celebrate the land and hear each other’s stories about our time on the land.
Join us and these cooperating organizations:                                                                       
Ascutney Trails Association (ATA)                                                                                                       Black River Action Team (BRAT)                                                                                                   Connecticut River Greenup Association                                                                                        Conservation Commission of Weathersfield                                                                                        Green Mountain Horse Association (GMHA)                                                                                           Sport Trails of the Ascutney Basin (STAB)                                                                                        Springfield Food Coop                                                                                                                             Upper Valley Land Trust (UVLT)Vermont Land Trust                                                                          Weathersfield Greenup Association                                                                                                     Weathersfield Hiking Association                                                                                                             
Call (802)-263-5217 for details.

Jeannie Lindheim

Weathersfield News Aug.27 #weathersfieldvt #VT

Weathersfield Vermont
August 27, 2014
Copyright © Nancy Nutile-McMenemy

To borrow a line from Mick Jagger "Please allow me to introduce myself..." I'm Nancy Nutile-McMenemy. I have lived in this beautiful little town of Weathersfield since 1987. I moved here with my husband from Amherst MA. While at school at the University of Massachusetts, I worked as an Arts and Feature photographer for the UMASS Daily Collegian. I worked at Dartmouth College for 20 years and retired in 2008. I picked up my camera again and started my Freelance Photography Business in 2009. I have been a freelance photographer for the Standard since 2010. I am also the House Photographer at the Lebanon Opera House. I shoot weddings, Senior Class Photos and Events of all kinds, and I love me new career.

I picked up the pen (or should I say keyboard) two weeks ago to cover this column for Lynn Esty while she was on vacation. When she returned, she turned the column over to me because she has a new challenging job and a new grandchild that are both really occupying her time. I have heard from many folks how much they loved Lynn's column so I have big shoes to fill. But I feel up to the task and I hope I can continue to keep the readers in Weathersfield informed and entertained.

In my garden-Tomato Late Blight-I am quite upset, down right angry, our garden tomatoes (all 40 plus plants, three varieties) now have Tomato Late Blight. My husband has been diligently putting the affected plant material and fruits into black plastic to "cook" them in the sun; never put them on your compost, the pile may not heat up enough to kill the spores or get cold enough to freeze over the winter. Many online sites say the black plastic bagging will help but the spores travel huge distances on the wind so we'll have to cross our fingers for next year. Our three varieties of peppers are doing great though; as are our beans and cukes. But ARRGHHH! we'll be purchasing tomato sauce this winter instead of pulling frozen tubs out of our freezer each week.

Music to my ears-Another rocking week of music. Last Tuesday we traveled to Concord NH to see the legendary Jackson Browne perform at the Capitol Center for the Arts. Thursday night we braved the rain for a free concert in Lebanon NH and got to see two up and coming artists Hana Zara (from Burlington VT) and The Wind + The Wave (from Austin TX.) Saturday we went to the Freight House (formerly Tupelo Hall Vermont) in White River Junction to see Peter Wolf, lead singer of the J. Geils Band. I grew up on Geils music and still love to hear Wolf perform these songs but his solo writing and music is equally entertaining.

Taste of Weathersfield-Each week I'll highlight a Weathersfield treat or meal that I've found in my travels around town. This week I picked the Fried Clam Dinner at the Country Creemee at Downer's Four Corners. I ordered my dinner with sweet potato fries and Cole Slaw. I have a tendency to judge a restaurant by its Cole Slaw and the Creemee does not disappoint. The meal was a bit pricey but to enjoy a good shore dinner down the street, to me, makes it worth it. Save room for dessert and try their Maple Creemee!

Town Events

Friends of Weathersfield Proctor Library-A Friends meeting will be held on Thursday, Aug. 28 at 7:00 p.m.. Time to plan for their annual book & bake sale which will be held on Saturday, Sept. 27.

Wellwood Orchard Customer Appreciation Day
Saturday Aug. 30 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. 529 Wellwood Orchard RD Springfield Vt.
Magic Show by "Hocus Pocus" from 10:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m. See your Local Fire & Police Departments, Face Painter Extraordinaire- Linda Weiser, Enjoy Balloon animals with "Cheryl the Clown" and Acoustic Guitar by John Laware. FREE: hotdogs, chips, soda, kids games, petting zoo, face painting, balloon art, contests, wagon rides, photos and prizes. Bring your camera. You don't want to miss this! This is OUR day to celebrate YOU, our loyal customers.

Car Seat Fitting
Thursday Sept. 4 3:00-6:00 p.m. Ascutney Volunteer Fire Department, Rte 131
Learn how to properly fit and install your child's car seat.

A Sense of Place-Free Potluck
Thursday Sept. 18 6:00 p.m. Weathersfield Meetinghouse, Weathersfield Center RD.. Hosted by the Weathersfield Land Preservation Association, this potluck will celebrate land use and stewardship. The event is designed so folks will share stories about their personal land use experiences. Call 263-5217 for more information.

Weathersfield Community Forum and Dinner
Thursday, September 25th from 6:00-8:00 p.m. Weathersfield Elementary School.
The Weathersfield School Board, Superintendent Baker, and Principal Oakman would like to welcome you to a community dinner and conversation on This event is open to the public. Pizza and salad will be served. Babysitting will be made available. The Board is very interested to hear your opinion on a variety of topics, some of which may include, (but not limited to); WS Busing, WSESU Programs and the Strategic Plan, Athletics, Foreign Language, Afterschool Programs, How to keep the climate and flavor of our hometown school with so many state and WSESU mandates, Budget Pressures, Vision for the Future, Emergency Preparedness. And any other topics of interest to YOU! The board is hoping for a nice attendance mix of community members, parents and school personnel to make this a balanced and rich conversation.

Weathersfield American Flag Project -Green Mountain Power and the Weathersfield Select Board have granted permission to display American flags on some utility poles along Route 5 in Ascutney and Route 106 in Perkinsville. Donations for this project (in the form of a check made payable to the Town of Weathersfield) should be mailed to the Town Office at PO Box 550 Ascutney, VT 05030. Please contact Lisa Slade 802-291-1475 for more information. The group is close to meeting their fundraising goal and hope to have the flags flying by Veteran's Day

PERKINSVILLE — Fred Ramsay Mellish, 76, passed away Monday, Aug. 11, 2014, at his Perkinsville home surrounded by his loving family. He was born June 14, 1938, in Hartford, Conn., the son of Alton Ramsay Mellish and Charlotte (Unwin) Mellish Jones. He served in the U.S. Navy and 27 years of service with the National Guard. He was a custodian in the Springfield school district. He and his wife were shepherds of Suffolk sheep. He was a contributing member of the Weathersfield Veterans Memorial Committee. Donations in Fred’s name can be sent to Church of Christ, P.O. Box 106, Springfield, VT 05156.


Wildlife Photo Contest-2nd Annual Contest Sponsored by the Weathersfield Conservation Commission. Requirements: Limited to native wildlife (animals, birds, or insects); Limited to amateur photographer; Must be photographed locally (within a 50 mile radius.) One submission per person must be on a 8 x 10 glossy. There will be up to three places should there be sufficient entries. Judging will be done by 3 interested persons. Submitted photos can be dropped off at the Weathersfield Town Office in an envelope plainly marked Conservation Commission photo contest. There is a drop box at the Town Office for after hours. Please include with the photo: Name, phone number, address, and location where photo was taken. Winning photos will be mounted and framed, then displayed for one year at either the town office, library, or school, then returned to the owner. Submission deadline: Nov. 15.

Food Shelf
The Weathersfield Food Shelf is located at 7303 Route 131 - the former "World of Discovery" daycare. Thanks to the generosity of their donors, the Weathersfield Food Shelf will now be open every Thursday from 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Senior Exercise Program in Ascutney-FREE sponsored by RSPV- Wednesdays 10:00-11:00 a.m. in basement of Martin Memorial Hall, Route 5, Ascutney, VT. Classes are led by Geraldine Rudenfeldt. If interested call 674-5254 for more information.

Exercise Group-FREE Perkinsville Church 9:30-10:30 a.m. on Monday and Thursday mornings there is a Bone Building exercise group led by Dottie Richardson. It is free, weights are provided and you work at your ability level. It is fun and good for you. Everyone welcome, just show up or call Dottie for more information at 263-5444.

Weathersfield Proctor Library-FREE Computer Tutor - Fridays 10:30 - 11:30 a.m. Do you want to learn how to use a computer? Sign up for email or facebook or learn more about internet safety? Did you know the library offers downloadable eBooks and audiobooks? Sign up required. BYOL (bring your own laptop or smartphone if you have one).

Monthly Potluck Lunch and Program-FREE Contact: Lorraine Zigman 802-263-5245;

Need to Find a Business in Weathersfield:

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Drug Take Back Day

Drug take back day is coming up!

To lean more about medication saftey go to

Literacy, Learning and Fun at the Weathersfield Proctor Library

AUGUST 25, 2014
CONTACT: Nancy Tusinski

Literacy, Learning and Fun at the Weathersfield Proctor Library

Your library has several ongoing programs ready for you this Fall.  
Fall Storytime with Jordan begins on Wednesday September 10 and will be held every Wednesday from 11:00 - 11:30 through November 19.  
The First Thursday Book Group is reading 'The Red Tent' by Anita Diamant this month and the meeting is on September 4th at 6:30 pm.  Copies of the book are available at the library. Newcomers are always welcome at to join this fun, friendly, brownie-loving group.  
One-on-one Computer Tutor classes in basic computer skills are held on Friday mornings 10:30 - 11:30 and registration is required.  Check the library calendar or call to find out more about evening computer classes which are offered every couple of months.

Looking to learn something new this fall?  The library offers over 500 free online classes, magazine articles, downloadable eBooks and audiobooks, the Old Farmer's Almanac and more online at your digital library branch

 Learn a new language with Powerspeak Languages or repair your car or truck using the Chilton's online guides available on the library's Gale Database collection (please call or email the library for the special password to access these resources). 
If you haven't had a library card in a while, stop by. This is not your grandmother's library.  The Weathersfield Proctor Library is located at 5181 Route 5 Ascutney, VT. 
For more information please call 802-674-2863 or email

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Rolling Road Block Continues for I-91

Construction (I-91 Bridge) Update.......

The rolling road block for this week will begin at 8:00 a.m. on Thursday, August 28 and last the remainder of the day while girders are being set.

As for a full shut down of Rte 44 under I-91, that is now scheduled to start September 2 through September 8.

Windsor I-91 Project Hotline is (800) 890-9199.

Special Bond Meeting Tally - Weathersfield Proctor Library Bond

Weathersfield Proctor Library Special Bond Meeting Tally
Yes: 257
No: 399
Blank: 2
Spoiled: 4
Total Votes: 662

Household Hazardous Waste Collections

Household Hazardous Waste Collections
Saturday, September 13th, 2014
Springfield Transfer Station
9:00am – 1:00 pm
Weathersfield Transfer Station
9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Only district residents may participate.
Up to 10 gallons = free
11+ gallons = $4/gallon
For more information, visit
Or call 674-9235
These events are sponsored by the Southern Windsor/Windham Counties Solid Waste Management District in cooperation with the host towns.
The next HHW collections will be on Saturday, May 9th, 2015 at the Springfield and Rockingham Transfer Stations.
We are accepting LATEX PAINT this year!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Primary Election and Weathersfield Proctor Library Expansion Bond Tuesday August 26, 2014

Primary Election and Weathersfield Proctor Library Expansion Bond
Tuesday August 26, 2014
8:00 am - 7:00 pm

Vote Now! Absentee Ballots are available at the Town Office at Martin Memorial Hall 5259 Route 5 Ascutney, VT 05030.  Absentee ballots must be returned to the Town Office by 4:00 pm on Monday August 25, 2014 OR

on Primary Election Day
at Martin Memorial Hall
Tuesday August 26, 2014
8:00 am - 7:00 pm
For more information about the library expansion plan and the bond, please visit

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Update on Weathersfield American Flag Project

Thanks to several generous donations we are close to reaching our original goal of $2200 which will purchase 44  American flags (and kits).  

It would be great to have the flags displayed for Veterans Day however, in order to do so a couple hundred dollars is still needed before the kits can be ordered. 

Please consider making a donation towards this project so the flags can be ordered and displayed within the next couple of months.  

Checks should be made payable to the Town of Weathersfield and mailed to PO Box 550 Ascutney, VT 05030.  

Please help pass the word about this project to your family, friends and neighbors. -Thank you

Saturday, August 30 - Wellwood Orchards Annual Customer Appreciation Day

Saturday, August 30th is our annual Customer Appreciation Day

10-11 is the Magic Show . 11-3 is free food, games, face painting, a Clown and much much more. Live music. Come and join the fun. Store and apple picking are from 9-5.

Free wagon rides, our famous cider donuts, and fresh pressed cider will also be available. 

Stop by and join in the fun. Our family wants to thank your family.  

 Petting zoo is also free for the day. Come one come all for a great day to kick off the apple season. Hope to see you !!!!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Letter from Stu Lindberg, Candidate for Vermont House of Representatives

I am a lifelong Vermonter.

When our two girls were born it was a foregone conclusion that they would be raised here in Vermont then leave the state to find a place where they could find a good job and afford to live.

Until the last few years I never imagined that my wife and I would have to follow them out of the state for the same reason.

The majority of my friends and their children have packed up and moved to greener pastures. In the last two years I have seen a number of my friends and neighbors pack up and depart. 

One of them was an eight generation Vermont farmer and a former Vermont State Representative. Many of the out of state folks that moved to Cavendish in the last 15 years are selling and leaving.

They are leaving for the same reason. Lack of affordability driven by high taxation and government overreach. 

I speak with local business in Cavendish and Weathersfield and they are struggling fiercely to stay afloat. 

The residents and second home owners in our towns shop and do business across the river in NH. This includes a number of Windsor County politicians. The same ones that vote to raise your taxes. 

Why is this? The business and tax situation in Vermont is unfriendly to business and citizens.
This is not a secret. What to do about this? 

I am running for office because I care deeply about my state, its future and our futures as residents here. The state government is in serious need of a course correction.

As an independent I will work across the aisle with all parties to make our government more efficient and accountable to those of us paying the bills.

Stu Lindberg.
Candidate for Vermont House of Representatives.

FOUND - DOG - Route 131

Found on Rte 131 weathers field vt going up hill picked up by red barn starting to go down hill. If you know me or my owner please call animal control. 603-477-1229

Claremont Skatepark Show

Saturday is a big day for youth music events in the upper valley!
In the day check out the claremont skatepark show
and in the evening the 802 Lounge will be hosting a 100% substance free acoustic event right in Windsor, Birthplace of Vermont
Chodus's photo.

Free Skatepark Show!
Saturday, August 23, 2014  at 4:30pm
Claremont, NH Riverside Skatepark

Driving on Suspended or Revoked License - Criminal

CASE#: 14WF00791
OFFICER(S): Chief William Daniels
DATE/TIME: 8-19-14 / 11:06 hours
LOCATION: Reservoir Road
VIOLATION: Driving on Suspended or Revoked License - Criminal
ACCUSED: Cody Root
AGE: 21
SUMMARY OF INCIDENT: On this date while conducting stationary radar on Reservoir Road, Chief Daniels observed a vehicle pass his location and noticed the front license plate was falling off (not properly secured). Chief Daniels stopped the vehicle and made contact with the operator to advise of the plate issue. Upon checking the operator’s license status, it was determined he was suspended and was subsequently issued a citation to appear in court.
COURT DATE: 8-21-2014
COURT: Windsor Criminal Division

Friday, August 22, 2014

Weathersfield Police Department - Calls for Service - 8/10/14 to 8/17/14

For the week of 8-10-2014 to 8-17-2014 the Weathersfield Police Department had the following calls for service:
3200 Accident-Damage - DMV Report 1
AMAS Ambulance or Medical Assist 1
ASST Agency Assist 4
CDIS Citizen Dispute 1
CITA Citizen Assist 7
FDAS Fire Dept Assist 1
PSC Suspicious Person/Circumstance 3
THAZ Traffic Hazard 1
OVIOL Traffic Stops 28
Total Incidents for This Agency: 57

Arrests compared to:
01-01-2013 to 08-17-2013: 9
01-01-2014 to 08-17-2014: 50
Calls compared to:
01-01-2013 to 08-17-2013: 419
01-01-2014 to 08-17-2014: 785

Windham Center Under Fire: Springfield Hospital Branch Violated Patient Rights

By Morgan True
Friday, August 22, 2014
(Published in print: Friday, August 22, 2014)

Bellows Falls, Vt. — In late May a patient at the Windham Center mental health facility was left in restraints for nearly 12 hours and was coerced into taking medication, according to an investigation report from the state.

Federal law allows patients to be held in restraints for up to four hours with a written order from a physician. The patient, who was “angry ... agitated and grossly delusional” and “threatening to assault staff,” was held in restraints from roughly 6 p.m. on May 27 until 5:47 a.m the following morning.

Psychiatrist Theodore Miller refused to let the patient out of restraints unless the patient took an antipsychotic medication, despite laws that ban the use of restraints for coercion, discipline, retaliation or convenience.

Just after 10 p.m., “Dr. Miller told patient that if s/he took medication we would allow h/her out of the restraint to go to the bathroom,” according to nursing records quoted in the report.

The patient asked repeatedly to use the bathroom and was told by nurses to urinate in the restraints, which the patient eventually did, according to the report.

From just after 10 p.m. until the patient was released there is no record in the state’s report of additional physician orders being signed.

The Windham Center has since submitted a plan of correction to the state Division of Licensing and Protection and the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which was accepted Aug. 19

The correction plan states all staff will review and sign the facility’s restraint and seclusion policy. It states that “A written physician order to continue restraint will be provided each 4 hours during duration of restraint use,” and that “Coercion will not be utilized to facilitate restraint removal
Including subheadings, the entire correction plan is 251 words.

Springfield Hospital, which operates the Windham Center, did not respond to requests for comment Wednesday.

The letter accepting the correction plan notes that there could be an unannounced follow-up visit to ensure the plan is implemented and working.

The Windham Center takes patients in state custody and, as a result, the Department of Mental Health has oversight responsibility for the facility.

The May 27 incident at the Windham Center is the third high-profile incident at a psychiatric facility in the past six months at locations overseen by the department.

“Are they responding and just not telling the Legislature, or are they not responding at all?” asked Rep. Anne Donahue, R-Northfield, a member of the Joint Committee on Mental Health Oversight.
“I don’t know the answer to that question, but I think it’s an important one,” she added.

Donahue said she was not aware of the May 27 incident at the Windham Center, but said it’s “coming on the heels of them having similar problems that they were supposed to have corrected.”

She was referring to incidents in 2013 that triggered CMS and state investigations.

Frank Reed, deputy commissioner of the Department of Mental Health, said his department was not aware of any incidents at the Windham Center or Springfield Hospital until Donahue raised them at a July meeting of the Mental Health Oversight Committee.

Reed said it’s unacceptable for a hospital designated to treat patients in state custody to not inform the department of investigations or the resulting findings. The department has sent a letter to the hospital saying as much, he added.

Reed says it was not an intentional failure by Springfield Hospital to notify the state, but rather a result of the infrequency with which it does inpatient care for the state.

The department’s quality management unit has reached out to the hospital and will help it get back in compliance with state and federal regulations, Reed said.

Other than “this glitch with the Windham Center,” the state is on top of its oversight duties and has done the necessary reporting to the Legislature, he said.

The department is only required to report events to the Legislature that occur at hospitals, hence lawmakers were not told about a recent escape attempt at a secure residential psychiatric facility in Middlesex.

In February, Springfield Hospital and the Windham Center ran afoul of the state and CMS for a December incident in which they transferred a psychiatric patient in state custody from the Windham Center to the hospital’s emergency department because of staffing concerns, not because it was the appropriate location for treatment.

The patient remained in the emergency department for eight days, according to the investigation report. The state paid sheriff’s deputies to attend the patient for much of the time.

Vermont has spent more than $1 million to have sheriff’s departments look after the mentally ill boarding in emergency departments since July 2013.

Just days before the patient was transferred, a Springfield Hospital emergency department doctor testified before a legislative committee about how disruptive it is to have people with mental illness boarding in his department.

Another patient was transferred without proper cause from the Windham Center to the Springfield Hospital emergency department in February 2013, according to the state report.

The patient who was involuntarily held in restraints by doctors and nurses in the May 27 incident said in the investigation report that the experience was traumatizing and the patient felt “a line was crossed.”

The patient eventually agreed to take antipsychotics after nearly half a day in restraints and one hour after urinating on him- or herself.

The patient was then allowed to take a shower and have a cigarette, the report says.

Weathersfield Casseroles and Culture

Steven Melanson will be the speaker at a Casseroles and Culture event at the Weathersfield Center Meetinghouse on Friday, August 22nd at 6:00 PM (the pot luck) and about 7:00 PM (the culture). This event will help raise funds by donation to repair the steps and stone deck of the 1821 Meetinghouse. The suggested donation will be $10.00 per person or $20.00 per family.

Steven restores and renovates old homes and builds timber frame barns. He assesses historic buildings for the Preservation Trust of Vermont. A photographer since his teenage years, he likes to drive back roads and side streets to find and photograph old homes and barns. Steven grew up in Charlotte, Vermont, got a BA at Norwich University, and received an MS in Historic Preservation from UVM.

Steven’s topic will be the architecture of Windsor County. Using his photos, he will discuss the architectural styles of some of the most beautiful and historic buildings of the county.

The large brick Meetinghouse with its Memorial Grove of Civil War maple trees is located on the Weathersfield Center Road 3 miles from Route 131 coming from the north, or 6 miles from downtown Springfield from the south. The group Friends of the Meetinghouse extends their welcome to you. For more information call 802-263-5547.

Why I am Running, by Mark Huntley, State Representative/Cavendish-Weathersfield

Why I am Running
When all is said and done, the real citadel of strength of any community is in the hearts and minds and desires of those who dwell there.
--Everett Dirksen
As the Vermont House Representative from Windsor District 2, I believe that the building blocks of my two years of work are in place for me to continue what I have begun. I’m happy to say that the relationships I have forged on both sides of the aisle are proving vital to my being an effective legislator.
Over that same period of time, what I’ve learned will have lasting value for my future contributions as an elected representative.
• I’ve learned that agendas don’t work. You can pound the table all you want, but you can’t demand respect—you have to earn it. There is decorum and order that are practiced in Montpelier, and one best adhere to it if you really want to get anything done or have any influence. The legislators that seem to have the hardest time do not understand this. There are rules and protocol that I found invaluable while attending rules meeting every Friday morning with Representative David Dean from Westminster.
• I am not a believer in being a career politician, although I am an honest, hard-working person who’s working for the good of the people of Vermont. I believe that I am appreciated and respected by my peers, and I support the important issues. That is why I am running for a second term. I feel that my track record speaks for itself; I don’t consider myself a rebel but I am not necessarily “party-line” either. I think independently and am willing to stand up for what matters to my communities.
• As an incumbent, I have a track record and a voting record that I am proud of. I have taken the time and energy to gather the information necessary to make informed decisions on behalf of my constituents and all Vermonters.
• It’s easy to run on promises to “change the world,” “cut taxes,” “reduce spending,” etc. The reality is, that there is still only 100 cents in a dollar and there are no easy answers when it comes to healthcare, property taxes, and spending or raising money. I am confident that given my experience and what I have learned in Montpelier, I can help move us in the right direction.
• Regarding taxes, I believe that revenues generated by taxes are important to the government - until we have fully recovered from the recession. Government is one of the three legs of our economy (producers and consumers being the other two) that has the ability to make investments to produce jobs, and jobs are the way out for individuals and for our economy. Some people want government to play a minor role, saying that state spending is the challenge. Others say government may be the only remaining body where spending and investment can happen when the producers won’t and consumers can’t.
• I was on local school boards for 10 years and I found that the boards I worked on did good work and always put the well-being of children first. During my last two years on the Green Mountain High School board (FY11 to FY13), we achieved a total budget decrease of -$120,449, while the budget for FY13-FY15 increased +$527,079. There are supervisory unions and school boards in our state that are doing a great job, and are being held out as models for others. I hope the continued dialogue with the education community and the public input continues. When you take away all the control of a local board, the effect is not automatically positive. Mandated change is hard, and no one likes to be forced to do anything. As one of my constituents said, “Having the ability to control budgets and spending locally is the Vermont way.” I voted against the school governance/consolidation bill.
• We are fighting an epic opiate/heroin “war” in this state, and you’d better believe that it affects everything: jobs, the economy, healthcare, etc. We have addressed this and will continue to fight it head on.
• We’ve passed a cell phone ban that, over time, will undoubtedly save lives.
• Our state’s largest employer is getting out of manufacturing everywhere, including New York. It’s tough to blame the job losses in Vermont on anything we did or didn't do—it’s a global situation. We need to continue the work of keeping the door open to new businesses and the opportunities and entrepreneurial spirit alive with tax incentives and state support for the strength of our Vermont brand.
• We have stumbled terribly with our healthcare rollout. However, we should not throw the $71-million-dollar baby out with the bathwater. We need a healthcare financing system that saves money, increases the depth and quality of services and promotes prevention, along with soliciting public input to obtain a healthier state at a lower cost.
• I strongly supported and continue to support GMO labeling.
• Most Vermonters support gas tax increases, but, as they now see, they have made little difference to the bottom line. We need to continue to support repairs and upgrades to our bridges and roads, because it is the infrastructure of our state that we all rely on, regardless of how we feel about how it is funded. We have no toll system or other revenue sources.
• Our state budget increased by 4.1 percent, and when we are looking at 3 percent inflation, this is not out-of-line. The increase in statewide property tax rates was largely the result of local spending decisions. Importantly, homeowners who pay by income (anyone with a household income under $90,000 which), were paying substantially less - 70 percent of them are paying based on income, under the Common Level of Appraisal. Addressing property tax tied to education funding and an equitable, income-based solution is a high priority
• Lots of jobs were created in the past two years, specifically in solar and renewable energy, and the groundwork through our new economic development plan (put forth by a republican and a democrat) should offer many new opportunities. We need proven leadership to achieve prosperity, equality and better times to come for all Vermonters. It takes intestinal fortitude to stay the course and be on the frontlines. Lets continue to move the ball down the field…together
I look forward to campaigning; it’s always an interesting experience. I get to meet all the people I represent and make note of their concerns. It truly is an honor to serve the citizens of Cavendish and Weathersfield, and all the people of our great state. Thank you for allowing me to represent you, and I would appreciate your support in November.
See you all on the campaign trail!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Annual Chicken BBQ to Benefit West Weathersfield Fire Department

Come support the community by eating BBQ, how can you loose on that deal?
Sunday, August 24, 2014
2 locations this Year:
The Fire Station
Intersections Rts. 131 & 106, Perkinsville
Serving between 10:30-5:30 pm
Weatherfield Area/Springfield Trails
98 Reservior Rd, Springfield
Serving between 10:30 - noon / After the 5K Walk/Run
More info: or WWVFD homepage

$10 for adults & $7.50 for kids under 10
(chicken, corn, potato salad, cole slaw and drink)
All proceeds will benefit the fire department!

1st Annual Five Alarm 5K Trail Run/Walk

Register and run/walk to support our neighboring volunteer FD!!!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Chicken BBQ at West Weathersfield Fire Department

Chicken BBQ
Sunday August 24
10:30 until we run out!
W.W.V.F.D. Station
or after the 5K at the Springfield Trail
All proceeds will benefit the fire dept.

NH dog owners warned of deadly virus: More than a dozen dogs have died in MA!bGMq4u

ALLENSTOWN, N.H. —Dog owners in New Hampshire are being warned about a deadly virus that has killed more than a dozen dogs in Massachusetts.

Parvovirus can cause intense defecation and vomiting. The disease is transmitted when healthy dogs come into contact with the feces or vomit of an infected dog. There is a vaccine available.

At least 15 dogs have died in Lowell, Massachusetts.

In Allenstown, breeder Jen Cutter says that she believes some people who came from Massachusetts to look at her dogs brought the virus with them. She said one of her puppies fell ill and died this month.

Experts said if the virus has appeared in a household, the dog's quarters should be thoroughly cleaned with a bleach solution

Some Peanut & Almond Butters Recalled

Joe Gullo CNN

nSPIRED Natural Foods is voluntarily recalling several lots of peanut butter, almond butter and other nut butters.

It's based on fears of Salmonella contamination.

The company became aware of the risk after routine testing showed a potential link between eating the products and four instances of illness.

Affected products include Arrowhead Mills peanut butters and MaraNatha almond butters and peanut butters.

Also on the list are specific private label nut butters sold under the Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, Kroger and Safeway brands.

Customers are asked to throw away the affected products and call nSPIRED Natural Foods for a replacement or refund.

(For a complete list check out the link above. )

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Healthier Living Workshop
Are you living with a chronic illness? This free workshop may be of interest to you

1879 Perkinsville Schoolhouse Committee Meeting Agenda

Meeting Agenda
1879 Perkinsville Schoolhouse Committee
6:30 PM, Wednesday, August 20, 2014
at Perkinsville School


Call meeting to order:


  1. Historical Grant

  1. Select Board Meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014

  1. Open Floor

  1. Set next meeting date and agenda

Fred Ramsay Mellish, 76

PERKINSVILLE — Fred Ramsay Mellish, 76, passed away Monday, Aug. 11, 2014, at his Perkinsville home surrounded by his loving family.

He was born June 14, 1938, in Hartford, Conn., the son of Alton Ramsay Mellish and Charlotte (Unwin) Mellish Jones. In his youth, Fred attended Bellows Falls Union High School, earning his GED, and then began his career in the military, serving in the U.S. Navy for four years followed by 27 years of service with the National Guard.

On Oct. 27, 1957, Fred married Dolores Davis at the Springfield Church of Christ. In addition to his military service, he was a custodian in the Springfield school district. He also worked many years for the town of Springfield. He and his wife were shepherds of Suffolk sheep. He was a contributing member of the Weathersfield Veterans Memorial Committee.

Along with his wife of 56 years, Fred is survived by a daughter, Norma Hicking and her husband, Charles; two sons, Benjamin and his wife, Penny, and Donald and his wife, Cindy; his sister, Beverly Page of Holland, Mass.; and his brother, William and his wife, Pam, of Quaker Hill, Conn.; three granddaughters, six grandsons, three great-grandchildren and several cousins, nephews and nieces.

A service celebrating Fred’s life will be held at 1 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 21, at the Church of Christ, 972 Chester Road in Springfield, with a reception to follow at the church’s fellowship room. In lieu of flowers, donations in Fred’s name can be sent to Church of Christ, P.O. Box 106, Springfield, VT 05156.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Primary Election and Weathersfield Proctor Library Expansion Bond

Primary Election and Weathersfield Proctor Library Expansion Bond
Tuesday August 26, 2014
8:00 am - 7:00 pm

Vote Now! Absentee Ballots are available at the Town Office at Martin Memorial Hall 5259 Route 5 Ascutney, VT 05030.  Absentee ballots must be returned to the Town Office by 4:00 pm on Monday August 25, 2014 OR

on Primary Election Day
at Martin Memorial Hall
Tuesday August 26, 2014
8:00 am - 7:00 pm
For more information about the library expansion plan and the bond, please visit
call the library at 802-674-2863
or email

Violation of Conditions of Release & Possession of Marijuana

CASE#: 14WF00700
OFFICER(S): Chief William Daniels
DATE/TIME: 7-23-14 / 15:45 hours
LOCATION: Weathersfield Center Road
VIOLATION: Violation of Conditions of Release & Possession of Marijuana
ACCUSED: Alexander Jillson-Corbosiero
AGE: 18
SUMMARY OF INCIDENT: On this date while patrolling Weathersfield Center Road, Chief Daniels noticed a vehicle in a driveway of a subject who had an active arrest warrant. Chief Daniels stopped to investigate and observed a male subject come from behind the trailer carrying a backpack. The male later took off on leg bail into the woods. A subsequent search of the vehicle revealed marijuana in the bag that the male had in his possession when he exited the rear of the residence. The male was identified and later turned up walking down Weathersfield Center Road. The male also had active conditions of pre-trail release on file in multiple courts.
COURT DATE: 7-24-2014
COURT: Windsor Criminal Division

Petit Larceny at Windsor Motel

CASE#: 14WF00532
OFFICER(S): Chief William Daniels
DATE/TIME: 6-4-14 / 14:12 hours
LOCATION: Windsor Motel
VIOLATION: Petit Larceny
ACCUSED: Nina Loring
AGE: 31
SUMMARY OF INCIDENT: On this date Chief Daniels responded to the Windsor Motel for a report of items removed from the property without permission. After an investigation it was determined that bedding was removed from a room without permission of the management staff. Ms. Loring was later issued a citation to appear in court for allegedly taking the bedding.
COURT DATE: 8-15-2014
COURT: Windsor Criminal Division

Missing Cat - Ascutney, VT

I am missing my yellow tabby cat named Rusty from thrasher road in Ascutney.

We are on the route 5 side and he goes in and out but stays close because he's 13, has no teeth and is just a homebody. 

He does eat dry food so if you fed him and think because he ate it that it isn't him lol think again. I think the rain caused him to hole up somewhere-if you live in that area can you check your sheds and garages? 

He was last seen yesterday morning at 5:30am. Text 802-369-4404 or call 802-674-4460. Thank you everyone!!