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Lamoine Budget Committee Minutes

October 16, 2006

Chairman Henry Ashmore called the meeting to order at 7:03 PM

Present were: Budget Committee members Henry Ashmore, Reggie McDevitt, Robin Veysey, Joe Young, Hubene Brodie; Secretary Stu Marckoon, Selectmen Perry Fowler, Jo Cooper, Cynthia Donaldson, Brett Jones; Asst. Town Clerk Kathy DeFusco, member of the public Merle Bragdon and CTV operator Bill Butler

Minutes – Reggie moved to approve the minutes of September 18, 2006 at presented. Hubene 2 nd . Vote in favor was 5-0.

Administration Budget Review – The committee conducted a line by line review of the proposed Administration Budget with discussion and comments as follow:

Benefits - Henry asked for an explanation of how the benefits line was calculated. Stu explained that instead of the town purchasing insurance through MMA or another health insurance company, his wife purchases a family policy through her employer and the town reimburses him for the portion that the bank does not pay. He said it's less expensive and complex that way.

Clerk/Tax Collector & Assistant Clerk/Tax Collector Salary – Reggie proposed that the Clerk/Tax Collector be raised to $15/hour and the Assistant Clerk/Assistant Tax Collector be increased to $14/hour. Henry asked about the board support item that was included in last year's budget. Stu explained that the clerk and assistant clerk have picked up part of the workload and have not had to invest significant amounts of time beyond their normal working hours; therefore the budget could be lowered.

A lengthy discussion followed on the pay scale for the two positions, and whether longevity should be rewarded more than superior/subordinate.

Joe moved to have the budget committee recommend that the current salary range for the two positions be reviewed with regard to job responsibilities. Robin 2nd . Vote in favor was 4-1 (McDevitt opposed) .

Registrar of Voters – The proposed merger of the Registrar of Voters salary into the hourly pay for the Town Clerk was briefly discussed.

Tax Maps – Stu explained part of the cost of tax maps was the amount of time taken to map out new subdivisions. A lengthy discussion followed on the possibility of impact fees. Hubene moved to suggest that the Planning Board review the subdivision fee schedule and possibly suggest to town meeting an updated subdivision fee schedule based on a list of tangible costs to the town from approval of subdivisions. Joe 2nd . Vote in favor was 5-0.

Legal Fees – Joe suggested cutting this line back to $1,500.00. Henry said the suggestion could be passed on to the Selectmen as a possibility.

Audit – There was a brief discussion about the audit cost. Stu said the contract with Jim Wadman runs out this year, and there has not yet been an estimate for the next contract.

Flag Program – Henry asked about the flag program. Stu said the budget was for replacements for those flags that have been and might be further damaged in a year. There was a brief discussion about the mounting height and the duration of the display.

Insurance Deductible – The Budget committee felt this line should be $1,500 to bring the fund to a point where it could cover two losses.

Computer Upgrade – Brett Jones arrived just in time to explain the need to continually upgrade computer hardware to keep pace with the software

Other – Reggie asked where the handrails are for the ramp leading into the town office. Stu said he would ask Glenn Crawford.

Flooring – There was a lengthy discussion about flooring at the town hall. Each person had different opinions on what ought to happen.

Roofing – There was a discussion of how much a roof on the town office would cost. Stu said he got an estimate from Mike Jordan. He clarified it was only an estimate, not a bid process. Cynthia urged keeping a log of when major capital projects are done.

Total Budget – Henry noted the total budget including the roof is up 10.34%, and without the roofing project, up 2.32%. Stu noted that the FICA and Medicare lines will be higher once the rest of the salaries are plugged in. Henry said the budget is still up less than the rate of inflation without the roof.

Capital Projects Section – There was a discussion as to whether the budget ought to be presented with major capital items in their own section instead of in each department budget (i.e. the town hall roof in administration). Reggie moved to create a capital improvement section of the budget. Robin 2 nd . Vote in favor was 5-0.

Merle Bragdon suggested putting reserves additions in the same section.

Next Meeting – The next meeting will be October 30 th . Stu reported the Parks Commission requested that they be put off a couple weeks. The Budget Committee felt that would be OK. The next agenda will be Solid Waste and Roads, and to review the adjusted budget format.

Other – Hubene asked if the school committee would discuss the school building project. Stu said he presumed they would. He said they've indicated they want some referendum in January. He said the project has not been finalized, but the forum provided useful information. Hubene said she would like to see the school present a list of “needs” separate from a list of “wants”. Stu said that should be addressed directly with the building committee.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:50 PM

Respectfully submitted,

Stu Marckoon, Secretary