MILTON — One week from today, the town’s municipal offices will welcome visitors inside for the first time in over a year.
Beginning June 1, community members can visit anytime between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday to Friday.
“I really want to get the building back open, and I really want people to feel welcome,” Town Manager Don Turner said. “Our main goal has been all along that we keep staff and the public safe.”
Here’s what you can expect.
Masks still required
For the time being, vaccinated and unvaccinated visitors to the town offices will still be required to wear a mask.
“Staff and visitors are going to continue to wear masks at least initially,” Turner said. “These precautions hopefully will not upset too many people and will gradually go away as more people are vaccinated.”
Appointments are suggested
While visitors will be able to walk-in to the offices to conduct business with various departments, Turner encourages folks to make appointments if they can.
“I would still encourage people to make an appointment if they can,” he said. “That would be greatly appreciated for staff as we ease back into the norm.”
All visitors, with or without an appointment will still be asked to sign in.
Where appointments are required: When the Milton Public Library reopens on June 1, appointments will be required.
The library will be open for 30-minute browsing appointments on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Call the library during business hours at 802-893-4644 to schedule a visit.
Most members of the community will not have seen the various upgrades that have been made to the town offices over the course of the last year and a half.
A single hallway now connects all of the departments, and directional signs are in place to show visitors how traffic should flow.
The lobby has been renovated with new carpeting, and a TV in the entryway conveniently lists each department’s location and phone number.
Plexiglass is still up in several locations where town staff conduct transactions with visitors, Turner said, and will continue to be in place for the foreseeable future.
Public meetings to return to in-person
On May 17, the Selectboard met in-person for the first time in several months. While the board members and Turner sat in the municipal building’s Community Room, residents were still able to participate in the meeting via Zoom.
Turner said that hybrid-approach to meetings will continue even once the pandemic is over.
“Like everyone else during this time, we found that participation was much better when meetings were virtual,” he said. “We had more people attending meetings, at least at the Selectboard level. It's all about transparency and the more people participate, the better it is for everybody.”
Milton’s other boards and commissions will also slowly return to in-person meetings. The Conservation is meeting this week in the Bombardier Park Pavilion and the Development Review Board will most likely meet in the Community Room next month.