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Administrative Assistant's Report

For Meeting of June 25, 2015

It’s hard to believe this is the final meeting of the fiscal year.  It sure seemed to fly by, and while things are in pretty good shape here, there is a lot to do to get the start of the next year under way. 

Your agenda is pretty full of requests for meetings with the Selectmen.  I am hoping some issues can be wrapped up at this meeting.

Minutes of June 8, 2015 – Please review the minutes from the previous meeting. They are relatively short.

Warrant 26 – There is at least one school payroll warrant on here, and there likely will be another prior to the meeting.  This warrant is posted on the website and will be periodically updated there, then printed prior to the meeting.  You’ll notice several stamps.com expenditures.  One is for public hearing notices for the state park project, but the big one was for 30-day notice certified mail fees.  They’ve gone up to $6.75 per piece.

Warrant 1 – We have some contractual obligations for July 1 – heating oil being chief among them, and you don’t meet until July 16.  I am proposing that you approve the warrant ahead of time to release the checks on July 1 with the payments to be credited to the next fiscal year.  This will include the annual one-time payments to the various social service agencies, the Ellsworth Library and the Downeast Family YMCA, and County Ambulance.

Cash & Budget Reports – Again, this is posted on the town’s website and will be updated periodically.  We are looking very strong on both the revenue and expenditure sides, though watercraft excise tax seems to be lagging a bit.  I do not forsee any over expenditures for the fiscal year. 

Encumbrance

I will likely have an encumbrance order projects approved but not completed in FY 15.  I have not gotten to that yet – one of the tasks to do in the next week.  The big one will be paving, and I hope to have a road project list on the addendum as well. 

It is likely that we will have to transfer a little money out of the investment account at some point in either late June or early July to cover school payroll and expenses.  We’ve not paid Ellsworth High School tuition yet that I am aware of.  The cash position of the town is excellent at this time. 

Tax Liens – This week (June 16th) we mailed out 153 notices to taxpayers that a lien will be placed on their property if payment in full is not received within 30-days.  This is up significantly from the previous year, and is likely in some cases a result of not mailing the post card reminder in February.  We are expecting phone calls, and when we sent letters to folks who owed small amounts, we got some heated replies back that they wish they had been notified sooner.  The lien filing date will be between July 16 and July 25. We are in hopes that a majority of those notified will pay.

There are a half dozen personal property accounts that have not been paid.  I have printed that list for your packet.  We will be writing to these folks requesting payment.  We are not able to lien unpaid personal property accounts.

Meet with Interim CEO – I had a nice chat with Millard Billings last week and he will fill in until a regular CEO is hired.  He asked to meet with the board and we can talk about his office hours and compensation (we’ve agreed to $25/hour). 

In the meantime, we must start a search for a new CEO, and I’ve told Millard he is welcome to apply for the job.  In your packed will be a draft of an advertisement.  Let’s review the ad and come up with a timeline for the hire.

Request of Steve Salsbury to discuss draft Gravel Ordinance – You have received a letter from Mr. Salsbury who would like to discuss the setback issue in the ordinance.  He plans to attend this meeting.

Recreation Committee – Greg Stone plans to follow up on the slow ride Sunday proposal.  

Water Testing Results – I have sent each residence tested their individual results and you have the memorandum I sent to them and e-mailed to the DEP.  You have printed copies in your packet.  The results are consistent with previous years testing – amazing how little changes there are in the tests!

E-Waste Collection – I’ve done up a poster for the collection and we’ll be rolling out the publicity on this prior to the meeting.  I’ve invited (at the urging of the collection company) Hancock and Trenton to join us and they were very enthusiastic about it.   The collection company loved the poster and seems eager to work with us.  We do need some volunteers and I’ve asked the Conservation Commission, and they’ve had a couple people offer.  I’ll try to help out.  It’s July 11 from 8am to 1pm.

Security System – The question about security systems went out to the town managers’ list serve and a variety of responses came back.  Mt. Desert/Bar Harbor police chief Jim Willis stopped by to talk with me about it as well.  The compilation of responses as well as a summary of his discussion with me is enclosed in your packet.

Veterans’ Graves Care Contract – The lawyer for Forest Hill Cemetery has drafted an updated contract after our discussion.  It’s my understanding the cemetery association is waiting for us to propose this contract to them for their approval.  I can recommend this contract, and if they sign it, we can finally release payment to them.   A copy is in your packet.

Lamoine State Park / HarborGuest Mooring I will ask David Herrick if he wishes to meet with you. He has a price list from Hamilton Marine for the guest mooring – it’s more than what you had authorized, and that does not include the stone.  David advises that the stone is being donated by Harold MacQuinn, Inc. and is valued at about $1,500.00.  We have not yet developed a use policy, though I’ve asked David to discuss that with me so we can draft something up.

Overnight Parking Policy- I spoke with Charlene “Sunshine” Hood, the park manager last week about this issue which is an internal park service issue, but of concern to our residents.  She tells me she hopes to have a meeting with her superiors to discuss this and will keep me informed.  She said she hopes to propose a designated commercial fishing parking area.

Ramp Project Update – The Planning Board has the ramp project on its agenda for July 7, 2015.  I presume things are on track to make this happen.  I do plan to submit a bill to someone at the state for the permit fees and the advertising/certified mailing costs.

Commercial Fishing Pier Proposal – In your packet is a communication string from Brian Hubbell.  This does not sound very optimistic about developing a portion of that area for commercial fishing purposes only.

Appointments – The proposed appointments are on the back of the agenda.  A few people have opted to not be reappointed.   Jim Crotteau has offered to stay on the Appeals Board until a replacement is found.  I’ve proposed moving Cece Ohmart from an alternate to a regular spot to take his place and searching for an alternate. David Legere and Richard McMullen have both indicated they would like to fill Gordon Donaldson’s slot on the Planning Board.  David would like to step down from the Conservation Commission which leaves an opening.  Christa Brey is leaving the Parks Commission, and that leaves 2 full member openings.  That commission is chronically understaffed – we should discuss that with the remaining members.

Contracts – I’ve done up the contracts for Jennifer, Shannon, Chris and myself.  There is a separate memo on my contract.

Lamoine Quarterly – I hope to get that started shortly, maybe even completed by meeting night? (that may be overly optimistic!)

The next meeting dates are listed on the agenda, but there might be more depending on the timetable for hiring a CEO.

At this point there is nothing for executive session. 

stu