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Administrative Assistant to the Board of Selectmen

Stu Marckoon
Report for meeting of August 13, 2020


What gorgeous weather we’ve had for the past few weeks.  Despite the current pandemic, it’s a mood lifter.


We took vacation the week of July 27th – celebrating our 40th wedding anniversary at a lake access cabin in Sebago.  It was very relaxing, but the work sure piled up during that week.  Jennifer was incredibly busy, and cash flow was very good!  Her plan is to take net week (8/10 to 15) off.    I also plan to take half a day off on August 21st and the 24th as we’re planning to spend a longish weekend in Portland at a family matter (a wake and a bridal shower). 


While on vacation, I was in touch with the office on a couple of things.  The sale of the foreclosed property at 176 Needles Eye was completed – Jennifer handled the “closing” just fine – mainly she wrote a receipt for the remainder of the sale price and signed a HUD statement for the buyer’s attorney.   The deed has been filed, and that’s over with!  I was also in touch with Brian Lippold regarding the Maine Community Foundation broadband assistance grant, and that has been submitted.


You’ve got a surprisingly busy agenda, but it hopefully won’t take all that long to deal with.  Remember, your meeting will start at 6:30 PM with a poverty abatement hearing which will be in executive session.  Your packet will have the application and letter you sent to the applicant from the previous meeting.


Minutes – July 23, 2020 – Please look over the minutes for any errors.  I didn’t get them done until about a week and a half after the meeting due to vacation, so things were not necessarily fresh in my mind.


Warrant 5 – There will be a payroll and school operations warrant (a very small one!) on this and whatever bills come in between now and Wednesday.  The paving on Mill and Shore Roads will probably not be on the warrant, as that will be taking place starting on Tuesday, and a bill is not likely to be generated until after your meeting.  The school payroll was on warrant 4.   I’ll update the warrant on the website periodically. I do plan to move some funds into the investment accounts on this warrant.


Warrant 4 – This was signed (hopefully) prior to your meeting for $110,502.30.  The largest bills were for the school payroll, the annual ambulance contract, crack sealing on Walker Road (encumbered), and for several road projects both encumbered and current year by Kelley and Sons – they’ve replaced several culverts.  Let me know if there are any other questions about the bills.


Cash & Budget Reports – Both FY 19/20 and FY 20/21 reports as of today (August 6) were with your materials that you received when you either signed warrant 4 or in your packet.  They will be updated periodically and printed for meeting night.


Checking Account Reconciliation – This was e-mailed to you on August 4th.  Let me know if you have questions.


Liens – We will be preparing property tax liens for the 19/20 property taxes next week, but they won’t get filed until at least August 17th as Jennifer will need to sign them.


Roads – There is a separate memorandum on Berry Cove Road with a proposed project and funding proposal for that road.


As far as a spring/summer work summary, most of it should be completed in the next week or two.  As noted earlier, Kelley and Sons has replaced a bunch of rotted cross culverts, some on the soon to be paved sections of Shore and Mill Road.  McMullen Landscape & Construction has a list of project they are starting on soon (I see culverts out!).    I’ll be working up a list of projects for the fall, but overall, the roads should be in pretty darn good shape!


Emergency Operations Plan – Hancock County EMA reviewed the plan you approved a couple of months ago and had some comment.  That’s in your packet and the comments are incorporated in an updated plan for your approval.  The changes are very minor in nature.


Lamoine Beach Park – Boat Ramp Complaint – I got a call this afternoon (8/6/20) about the boat ramp area at Lamoine Beach and pieces of rebar sticking up and creating a danger to swimmers.   I have passed that along to the Parks Commission but recalled that a while back we had asked to have the ramp removed.  I did a little digging and found a letter we’d written to the Bureau of Parks and Lands and an e-mailed reply saying they would remove it, but that has never happened.  I have called Parks and Lands and hope to speak with the Regional Manager about this to find out why that never got done.


Property Line Agreement – Town meeting approved entering a line agreement with Marion McDevitt.  We have had the language for several months now, and I would like permission to have Dan Pileggi write that into a line agreement to be filed at the Registry of Deeds.  I can’t imagine it will cost all that much.


State Valuation – Maine Revenue Services has sent their proposed valuation for the town.  That’s in your packet along with a spread sheet of valuation and tax rate history.  We keep falling back on the assessment ratio and it might be time to start thinking soon about a revaluation.


Planning Board Memorandum – A memo from John Holt regarding short term rentals and ordinance language is in your packet. 


MMA Ballot – MMA wants a vote on its executive board members.  The ballot is in your packet. 


County Budget Advisory Committee Caucus – The caucus notice is in your packet.


Broadband Expansion – As noted the application to Maine Community Foundation has been submitted.  Mr. Lippold also resurveyed the current cable buildout in town last week, and more areas have recently been wired apparently.  I think the MCF grants will be awarded in September. I did not copy the application or Mr. Lippold’s report on the cable buildout, but would be happy to if you desire.


Transfer Station Design – I will try to talk with Chip Reeves before your next meeting to see where things stand with that effort and how he thinks we ought to move forward.


Appointments – The Conservation Commission meets the night before you do.  They have appointments of a Joint Municipal Board member suggestion and an alternative Commission member on their agenda.  I did contact one person who might be a terrific nominee for the JMB – she was going to get back to me on whether she has time to do it.


Assistant Clerk/Absentee Balloting – After what Jennifer & I would term (at best) Hell Month & a Half with the July 14, 2020 primary and the volume of absentee ballots, we are not looking forward to the November 3, 2020 presidential election.  We anticipate possibly 750 absentee ballot requests or more!  The two of us simply cannot handle that volume alone.  I would like to utilize Nancy Jones to assist in that effort beginning in mid-September.  Nancy has been working a few hours lately to assist with stuffing tax bills in envelopes and on catching up on Motor Vehicles filing.  We have some money budgeted for that position which I would anticipate being 10 to 15 hours a week for 6-weeks.


Lamoine State Park – Piling Project – I spoke with the new park manager about the project suggested by Harbor Master David Herrick and asked if the park might consider a 50/50 cost split.  She said she would speak to her supervisor and get back to me.  She is very pleasant and I’ll gently remind her next week to see what she found out.


Lamoine 150!  - The committee meets this afternoon and I suspect Jo will have an update for the Selectmen’s meeting.


That’s everything on the agenda.  The meeting schedule picks back up to twice a month beginning in September.  The dates are proposed as the 1st and 3rd Thursdays of the month. 


See you on Thursday!