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Budget Committee

Minutes - December 12, 2017 (Draft, subject to correction)

Chair Robin Veysey called the meeting to order at 6:00 PM.

Present were: Budget Committee members Merle Bragdon, Connie Bender, Robin Veysey; Secretary Stu Marckoon, Dawn Coffin and Paige Gott of Families First Community Center, Amy Wisehart and Martha Nordstrum of the Ellsworth Public Library, and Joan Bragdon.  Committee member Marion McDevitt had informed the board prior to the meeting that she would be unable to attend due to the weather.

Minutes – November 28, 2017 – Merle moved to approve the minutes as distributed.  Connie 2nd.  Vote in favor was 3-0.

Social Service Budget Requests – Stu noted the only new request this year is from Families First Community Center.  Executive Director Dawn Coffin handed out a brochure and gave an explanation about the services offered by the center which concentrates on homeless young parents with children.  She said the center can accommodate up to 6-families on a longer term basis and assists with education about basic living needs.  Paige Gott of the center provided her history with the issue.  Robin asked about their funding source.  Mrs. Coffin said they have taken out a loan, raised $130,000, received grants, get vouchers from the local housing authority, and run case management programs through the Department of Health and Human Services, and benefit from a CDBG grant.

Stu noted that the Washington Hancock Community Agency and Child and Family Opportunities are now a merged agency, but each section provides a different service which were separately funded last year.  He said the Budget Committee briefly discussed and believed that each branch of the agency, now called Downeast Community Partners, would be eligible for a funding request. 

Stu also noted that no funding requests came from Maine Coast Memorial Hospital and the Visiting Nurses Association, both of which are under the umbrella of Eastern Maine Health Care.

Library – Amy Wisehart of the Ellsworth Public Library said Lamoine residents are eligible for free library cards.  She said there are 286 card holders from Lamoine, and they request $27/card, the same as the previous year. She said that’s a lower figure than the current year, and while there are fewer card holders, those from Lamoine checked out more books than last year.  She noted the Library is in the strategic planning process and many Lamoine residents have expressed opinions on a survey.

YMCA – No one from the YMCA was present.  Stu noted the request for $3,000 is the same that it has been for at least 20-years.

Roads – Stu reported that plowing cost won’t be known until at least January 4, 2018 when bids are due.  He suggested that a recommendation could include that the amount be adjusted according to the bid price.  He noted that the plan is to pave Seal Point Road.

Revenues – There were brief discussions about excise tax, use of undesignated fund balance (surplus), and the Road Fund.

Capital Improvements - Stu noted the largest item on the list is the ladder truck purchase.  He said the fire chief has intentionally left that line for equipping the truck blank, believing there will be enough equipment left when the tanker truck is sold to equip the new truck, and the fire department might possibly purchase other equipment needed.

There were brief discussions about the town hall steps/foundation reserve, the Marlboro Beach purchase, and establishing a park on Mud Creek Road.

Shellfishing – Stu reported the requested amount will remain at $3,000.  He noted that the bulk of the licenses are sold in Lamoine, and the town seems to be the place where most of the clams are harvested. 

Next Meeting - The next meeting of the Budget Committee will be a week from this (December 19, 2017 at 6:00 PM).  It’s expected the Selectmen will finalize the Parks/Rec/Cemetery Care budget on Thursday, and that’s the last for the Committee to deal with.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 6:45 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Stu Marckoon, Secretary