Transfer Station

I will soon establish a regular schedule for meeting with anyone in town with concerns and gathering your input.  And of course, giving you my thoughts.  In that regard, I will be at the transfer station on Saturday, March 24th from about 9:30 am to Noon.  Please feel free to stop by and say hello.

Thank you!

I am honored and grateful to have been selected by the people of Pownal to serve on the Select Board. We are blessed as a town to have had a broad field of candidates to choose from; all of whom clearly want what is best for Pownal.

As I promised during my campaign, I will strive to make our town government as transparent as possible, and to solicit input from the good people of Pownal for all major decisions. And I will make sure all initiatives are weighed fully against the costs before approval.

We are also blessed to have the experience and dedication of the current select board members. I will be looking to them to learn the ins and outs of the position, and the tasks ahead of us.

Congratulations to Julie Weber for town clerk, Ellen Strohmaier for Treasurer, Ron Bisson and Jenny Dewar for the 1 year select board term.

Thank you to all that supported me, and thanks to the other candidates for a positive race. I look forward to serving the people of Pownal.


The repeater is in a central location, and allows for longer range broadcasts of emergency information.  Without it, it is difficult to hear what is being said over broadcasts.

This is a one-time expenditure.  There is no on-going maintenance required.

In an emergency situation, miscommunication can be fatal.  Some examples that did occur in Pownal are:

  1. 2 years ago where the Roost used to be, there was a fire.  In trying to convey where the fire was, the on-scene person said it was the same place as a controlled fire was prior to this.  All the responders heard was ‘controlled fire’.  This sent the wrong message and delayed a response.
  2. One of the first responders for a different event was in Williamstown, and could not hear any of the specifics of emergency call.
  3. In another incident that was conveyed to me, someone had a chimney fire, which can often be catastrophic.  The first responders arrived on scene, took care of the situation to where there was not longer an emergency.  But that could not be accurately relayed to the fire department, so the responders showed up on site.  Had those resources been needed for another emergency, they would not have been able to respond while tied up for the now neutralized threat.
  4. Often, first responders live in areas where they never hear a call in the first place, cost valuable time and resources during emergency events that are often life threatening.

In my view, this is a perfect example of what we SHOULD be spending tax dollars on.  This comes down to taking care of our neighbors, and protecting lives.  To me, it is not just a probability that failure to act will result in loss of life, it is a statistical inevitability.  It’s just a matter of time.

And when it does happen, we will certainly act and approve this expenditure.  Let’s do it NOW, before the unthinkable actually happens.  We’ve already had too many close calls.  

Meet and Greet Statement

I was not able to attend the ‘Meet and Greet’ at the Pownal Elementary School  on Tuesday, Feb 27.  Here is the 3 minute statement that was read on my behalf:

My family has called Pownal home since the 50’s, and Vermont home for centuries.

Over the last year, I have become more involved in town politics due to my concern over what I see as the growing divide between certain factions in town as evidenced in the vision of the town plan which has a lopsided focus on the arts.  This mostly socio-economic divide has created an emerging culture that embraces the vision of a few over the needs of us, the silent majority.  What I see is a massive disconnect between the needs of the working class and those that have affluence who are able to live here with financial security.

Common solutions offered to struggling families are more state intervention, more social services, and more tax funded grants.  Not only are these solutions mere band-aids to the needs of our citizens, the expansion of our state and local government is killing our economy. Forbes now ranks Vermont 48 out of 50 for economic outlook.  Pownal needs jobs.  We need large employers who offer not only entry level jobs but upward mobility, training and the kind of stability that helps struggling families meet their basic needs with a level of dignity not available from government programs.

A large employer will provide locals with more disposable income to be able to spend in local businesses.  A small farm or food producer would have more opportunities to sell their goods when the base line standard of living is raised, and more people are coming to the area to work and live.  Local electricians, plumbers and carpenters will have more opportunity for work when families have the income to be able to upgrade their homes.  More disposable income will also create possibilities for working families to be able to afford dump fees, beautify their homes and properties and buy and maintain working vehicles.

People struggling to feed their children and maintain their living situations cannot be patrons of the arts in any way.  When we try to improve our local economy by way of grants and government funding, we are using the tax money of these hard working Vermont families.  The till will be empty if we do not also aggressively increase tax revenue through sources that will continue to generate money….not just spend it.  Our current direction is NOT SUSTAINABLE.

The proposed town plan has 8 “requirements” that large employers would have to meet to be able to locate in Pownal.  These are not just requirements, they are barriers.  These barriers make it highly improbable that any large employer would ever come to Pownal again.  This ensures that the only kind of employment that will be available in town is low paying with no upward mobility or benefits.  This is detrimental to Pownal’s struggling families, who will either need to move to access real opportunity, or become dependent on welfare and subsidies.

Pownal citizens must have a stronger voice and less centralized control over the decisions that affect them.  The people who live here are the best equipped to choose their town clerk, how their local school is run, and what kinds of businesses are allowed to exist here.  We need to stop spending Pownal families’ precious tax dollars and instead create more revenue that will allow us to take care of infrastructure needs here in town.

These are my most pressing issues that I have chosen to campaign on.  I also have many thoughts and ideas regarding other important questions, which I would be happy to answer and discuss.

In closing, I also want to take this opportunity to strongly recommend a ‘No’ vote on Article 28 to keep the town clerk an elected position.  I enthusiastically endorse Julie Weber for that position.

Bob Jarvis – Answers to Questions (FPF Post)

PUBLISHED Bob Jarvis • • Mt. Anthony Road, North Pownal

Posted to: Pownal


I want to thank those of you who have posed questions to me. As promised, I am answering your questions here.

I received a question via email from Richard regarding my opinion on a new town manager.

I believe it to be fiscally irresponsible to be considering the hiring of a town manager instead of using the resources already available to us. If for some reason the select board feels that Linda or Julie are not equipped to serve our town, then I feel the best solution would be to pay for any extra training they might need to help them perform their duties with the changing requirements of the county and state. We will never find a manager that has the knowledge of Pownal that these two women have, and the relationships they have formed over many years. Let’s preserve their positions and help equip them to meet the changing needs.

Having attended many meetings of the planning commission and select board in the present town office, I can certainly attest to the need for improved accommodations. However, I think that it is irresponsible to depend on only one architect’s plans and ideas to decide the best solution. Instead, I would like to see the job be bid out to multiple contractors, and creative construction practices be considered such as steel buildings and creating an addition to the already existing structure. I believe we can create a sustainable working space for our public servants and public meetings while also spending our citizen’s tax money responsibly and reasonably.

Secondly, I want to thank Megan for her question, and I hope others will keep them coming. The question is quoted here, “What besides obstruction, negativity, and constant harping about the so-called unfairness of anyone who disagrees with his extreme positions does Mr. Jarvis offer? What has he given Pownal?”

I have spent many hours studying the proposed town plan, state policy and legislation, meeting with fellow residents, attending planning commission and select board meetings, writing suggestions and re-writes for changes to the town plan and other policies that I feel would benefit Pownal. I have never denigrated anyone’s character, nor doubted their motives or intentions even when I disagree with them on policy. If you watch any meeting that I have attended on CATTV you will see that I listen, ask questions, and treat everyone with respect.

I am not sure which of my positions you consider extreme, as most of my views come from a liberty minded position which i am certain many in Pownal share. Perhaps if you tell me specifically which views you find extreme I can clarify. It is disheartening to hear that because I express my opinion, it is seen as somehow obstructionist. I love my hometown, and to assume I want anything but the very best for it is an example of the marginalization of opposing views.

In closing, I would like to ask any other candidates a question: what is your view on article 28? Should the people of Pownal be able to continue to vote in their town clerk, or should the clerk be appointed and overseen by the select board?

Thanks to all, and I would appreciate your support on election day.

Email: Webpage: Facebook: Bob for Pownal

Front Porch Forum – Candidacy Announcement

Hello fellow Pownal citizens. I am Bob Jarvis, and I am running for Pownal Select Board 3year term.

I want to thank those of you who were able to attend my meet and greet at the library this past weekend.  For those of you who were unable to attend, and are interested in learning more about me and what I hope to achieve as a select board member, I want to publicly answer some questions that have been posed to me.  Before I begin, if you have ANY question you would like to ask me, please contact me through any of the following forums;    Facebook:  Bob for Pownal

I will answer your questions directly, and publicly post answers to Front Porch Forum.

  1. Why are you running for office?

I am deeply concerned that the true needs of Pownal citizens are not being addressed by our current government.  What I see as the biggest need for Pownal now is jobs and economic development.  The current proposed town plan has put up massive barriers against any large employer being able to come to our town.  The proposed town plan’s vision is almost exclusively dedicated to the arts.  The only mention of a large employer is in a negative comment.  I should add that it is wonderful that we have a growing arts community in Pownal, but that is only one small part of our town.  The town plan MUST represent ALL Pownal citizens.  A lopsided focus on one sector of our economy will hurt ALL sectors of the economy INCLUDING the arts.

  1. What are the proposed barriers to a large employer who might want to locate in Pownal?

According to the proposed town plan, before a large employer can locate in Pownal, it must meet 8 highly restrictive requirements. These requirements would bar any large employer from actually being able to do business in Pownal.  These barriers are not required of any other kind of business.  Having these barriers in place will signal to ANY large business that might want to locate here that the local government will not support them and will likely prevent them from being able to succeed.

  1. Do you think the town clerk should be an elected or appointed position?

I have personally witnessed Julie Weber (our current acting town clerk) courageously hold the planning commission and select board accountable to legal process and procedure on multiple occasions.  That accountability disappears if she reports to the select board.  The town clerk MUST remain an elected position.  Please vote NO on Article 28.

  1. How will you be able to serve on the select board while also holding your current job?

My love of this town and my concern for its direction is what has motivated me to run for this position.  I will absolutely make the time for this job as it is one of my highest priorities.  I am compelled to help change the current direction of the town that I am from and am raising my family in.     Facebook:  Bob for Pownal