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Administrative Assistant's Report

For Meeting of August 12, 2010

I hope you have enjoyed the long break between meetings, and I thank you for coming into sign the expenditure warrant last week. The office has been fairly quiet, but I've been extremely busy dealing with the theft of items from the fire station last week. More on that later in the report.

The meeting agenda isn't all that aggressive, so I'm thinking this could be a relatively short meeting. Saying that probably jinxed it!

Minutes – The July minutes were from the fire station meeting, and your usual review is most appreciated.

Warrant 2 – This is the one that was individually signed last week. A copy is in the packet in case there were any questions about it.

Warrant 3 – As of this writing (July 29th) it's relatively small. There will be two payrolls on here. Jay Fowler's bill was for the Shore Road Culvert replacement project that was substantially completed in June, but he didn't get the bill in until late July, as the paving had not yet been completed. This is booked as a FY 2010 expense, and that pretty much used up the road budget (between regular maintenance and paving). The Northeast Emergency Apparatus bill is for the air bags you saw at the last meeting. This is paid for through a FEMA grant, and the fire department match for that grant has been received. The Computer Essentials bill & refund are a result of the theft at the fire department. That'll be discussed later. The 1 st loan payment for the fire truck is also on here, booked as last year's expense.

Checking Account Reconciliation – I presume this will balance up just fine – the month doesn't close until after this report is written.

Cash & Budget Reports – I think we've gotten just about all the bills from FY 2010 in and booked as payables, and the extraneous revenue is also booked as receivables, so there is a pretty good picture of FY 2010. You will note the fire truck payment is up to date. Revenues were extremely close to budget (99.99% collected!) though there were shifts in where the revenue came from (excise tax down, interest down, cell tower rent up). Expenditures did not go over budget with the exception of Cable TV (which is its own fund, and revenues well exceeded the extra expenses), and road maintenance (offset by savings on paving). Bottom line is, 2010 held its own.

The current year report is also in your packet, and while it's very early in the, you'll see that cash flow is very good thanks to the earlier property tax due date. I no longer fear that we'll run out of money for the school payments during the summer!

Excise Tax Report – You'll notice that we had our lowest year of excise tax collections since 2003. Gulp. July, though, is looking promising.

Audit Engagement Letter – This is the annual letter confirming that Jim Wadman is the town's auditor.

Property Tax Receipting – As an efficiency measure and money saving move, we have developed a system to eliminate the hand written property tax receipt. This involves inputting the checks directly into the database program and running a single report daily for the tax collector. The report is checked off against the tax receivable ledger (hand written) and the receivable database. This has saved a huge amount of time, and if someone wants their receipt, we're able to quickly print it off. It also eliminates about $200/year in costs for the tax receipt books. So far, so good!

Hodgkins Trust – Generally I don't like being sued, but in this case, it's a good thing. Bar Harbor Trust Services named the Town as the Defendant in the case before probate court to change the decree from Leurene Hodgkins and lower the income available for use from $350,000 to $200,000. A copy of the “suit” is in your packet.

Septage Agreement – The agreement with Haslam Septic expired at the end of June. A new one at the same price awaits your signature and runs for a 3-year term just like the old one. For those newer to the Board, state law requires that municipality have a contract for capacity of septage. Haslam holds that contract with us through their contract with their disposal site.

Lock in Heating Fuel Price - The latest offer from No Frills is $2.499. We paid $2.199 for the past heating season. The current statewide average (7/27/10) is $2.62. The average last year was $2.32, so it's in the ballpark.

URIP Form – MDOT – We have to sign this annually to get the money from MDOT.

Appointments – RSU 24 Interim Representative – We've had three people express interest. Nathan Mason was the most enthusiastic and is willing to serve until the November election. Brett Jones also offered to serve, though he was just appointed to the Local School Advisory Committee and he intends to run for the job in November. Kathleen Rybarz threw her name in, but only as a last resort.

Deputy Registrar – My term as Deputy Registrar of Voters apparently expired. To serve, you could appoint me through the end of December, and then reappoint then to coincide with the Registrar's term.

Town Meeting Format Survey – Cynthia said she would have a report for this meeting. I look forward to seeing it. You should discuss the strategy for wording the question and public education that you wish to employ between now and the November election.

Walker Road Resident Concern – Jo asked that this be discussed after I sent a reply to the Walker Road resident concerned about another person who lives nearby and is perceived as a problem. This may need to be in executive session.

Fire Department Theft – I'm keeping a running log on what's happened, and your packet will have the entire saga. There are some issues to address: 1) Should the insurance deductible fund cover the $1,000 deductible for this loss? 2) Should we discuss doing background checks on all applicants to be members of the fire department? 3) What additional security measures should be employed at the fire station? The security matter qualifies as an executive session item if you so choose.

Recycling Grant Availability – There is material in your packet about this grant. I've not read through it closely.

Workshops – MMA is holding an elected officials workshop on October 20th in Somesville. I encourage you all to attend – these are very useful. On November 10th , the facilitated workshop on community collaboration will be held. Again, I urge you to attend. I will probably skip the Elected Officials Workshop but would like to go to the November session. Both of these are on Wednesday evenings, and will be held at the Somesville Fire Station.

Goals Review / Implementation – You set some very general goals in June – time to get to work on them, if there is time.

Vacations – I will be out of the office to attend a Tax Collectors & Treasurer's meeting in Biddeford on the 13th and then on vacation after that, returning on August 23rd to work. This week will actually count toward last year's vacation schedule according to my contract. I only took a week last year!

Jennifer plans to take the week of Labor Day off as her first week of vacation, and she will be moving to Lamoine!

Meeting Schedule – Back to twice a month for September. Additionally, you asked to meet with various boards and appointed officials on a somewhat regular basis, so I'll proposed a meeting schedule for you to go ahead with at this meeting in a separate memo. The 1st and 3rd Thursdays of each month through February are laid out in the agenda.

Executive Session – A couple of executive session eligible items are alluded to earlier in this report if needed.

I hope you've enjoyed the great weather this summer – I've enjoyed getting caught up on a lot of work between meetings!

stu