ATHOL The open seat on the Thurman Town Board — vacated by the recent unexpected death of Councilwoman Rebecca Hitchcock — was filled Tuesday, June 19 by the appointment of her husband, Bob Hitchcock, to the remainder of her unexpired term.
After taking his oath of office soon after the town board cast a unanimous vote for his appointment, Bob Hitchcock, 60, was welcomed with applause from townspeople at the meeting.
Among those in the audience applauding was Gail Seaman, who has announced her intention to run for the seat in November, when the two-year term expires.
Hitchcock, a retired Corrections Officer who was employed at Great Meadows prison for decades, said he’s only intending to remain in office through 2012.
“I am planning just to fill out Becky’s term out of respect for her service to the town,” he said.
After a moment of silence opening the meeting, Town Supervisor Evelyn Wood read a proclamation honoring Rebecca Hitchcock, noting she volunteered hundreds of hours to projects that benefited the town’s citizens, particularly through organizing the annual Jackwax Party, the Christmas Baskets program, the town food pantry and various town events.
“Rebecca Hitchcock diligently and creatively sought to better the community,” Wood said, calling Hitchcock the town’s “volunteer extraordinaire.”
Taxpayers saving cash on trash
Later in the meeting, Hitchcock and other board members heard Wood offer some good news: the town’s action this year to discontinue curbside trash pickup is saving local taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars. In lieu of the weekly curbside pickup, the town is accepting trash at the town transfer station and carting it to the Hudson Falls trash plant for disposal.
Wood said that in May alone, the town transported 5.4 tons of trash for disposal at a cost of $313, versus 31.1 tons during May 2010 at a cost of $2,145.