Strong town meeting is Aug. 15; bring chairs

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STRONG – The annual town meeting will be held on Saturday, Aug. 15 at the Strong Fire Station, following two previous postponements relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The meeting will begin at 9 a.m. at the station, located at 16 River Street in Strong. Residents are being asked to wear face coverings and maintain social distancing guidelines from the Center for Disease Control. Additionally, attendees are asked to bring their own chairs rather than haul – and, later, sanitize – furniture from the Forster Memorial Building.

Strong’s originally scheduled town meeting was postponed in late March as part of an initial round of cancellations relating to the pandemic. It was postponed again in May, with the voting of local officials held during the state primary vote on July 14. With Selectman Rodney Spiller choosing not to run for another term, residents elected former selectman Richard Worthley to fill the open position, as well as sending Lois Barker and Jessie Stinchfield back to the MSAD 58 school board. The MSAD 58 school budget was also approved, both in Strong and across the district, leaving the annual town meeting and setting the municipal budget as the last pieces of the town’s unfinished business for 2020.

According to Selectman Jim Burrill, the budget proposed in the 39-article warrant going before residents on Aug. 15 represents a slight decrease as compared to the previous fiscal year. With small increases to the town’s commitments due to the MSAD 58 and county government budgets, Burrill said that if the municipal budget was approved as presented, along with the recommended $250,000 transfer out of surplus, it could represent a decrease of roughly half a mill.

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