Town meetings scheduled for Saturday

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KINGFIELD – Selectmen are recommending no new increases in the proposed budget going to voters on Saturday, beginning at 9 a.m. at Kingfield Elementary School.

As recommended, the total budget stands at $697,980, with about an additional $6,000 in requests voters will be asked to approve that selectmen are not recommending be funded. Among the requests is $3,000 more for trail maintenance the Snow Wanderers Club would like to see come out of the tax increment funding share the town receives in a deal with Poland Spring plant.

Kingfield’s town administrator, Greg Davis said they are barred from using TIF money for anything not specified in the agreement so the $3,000 would need to come out of the town’s general funds, which selectmen don’t want to do.

Three residents have filed papers seeking to fill resigning 12-year-veteran Selectman John Dill’s seat. Scott Hoisington, a Sugarloaf employee; Melvin Wilson, a carpenter; and Ray Meldrum, the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department chief deputy would all like to fill the three-year selectman’s term.

If Meldrum is elected, “a little wrinkle,” Davis said, would need to be ironed out at town meeting. The three selectmen also serve as the Board of Assessors, and as such, Meldrum, as a state employee, would be ineligible to serve on the assessor board so an election will need to be held for someone to serve as the third assessor if Meldrum wins.

Residents will also need to vote on three non-funded articles: two are to update the town’s zoning and shoreland ordinances in order to get in line with the state and a third to adjust the wording of the fire Department’s billing to allow for out-of-town incidences where the equipment is used to be possibly reimbursed by insurance. Currently, Davis said, there is no provision that allows for possible reimbursement for equipment used over town lines.

“We’re not talking about local residents being billed; they already pay for the Fire Department service. We’re only concerned with reimbursement from out-of-town incidences,” Davis said.

Winter roads biggest increase in Eustis this year

EUSTIS – Town Clerk Kathy Fearon expects a relatively brief meeting this year, with 33 articles and few major increases.

The meeting itself is scheduled for Saturday, in the town office, at 9 a.m. Elections for a selectman seat, a MSAD 58 board member position and three budget committee members will be held from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday at the town office.

The town will be asked to approve one major increase.

“Our biggest increase this year is winter roads,” Fearon said. She noted that new increases in a winter maintenance contract could cost taxpayers an additional $55,000, up from the previous year’s $69,000.

Running for selectman this year is Jane Wilkinson, while Tom MacDonald seeks to represent the community on MSAD 58’s school board. Both candidates are incumbents, running unopposed. Lori Lemont and Daphne Harp are running for two of the three open seats on the budget committee, and Fearon said she expects the third seat will be filled by a write-in candidate. All seats are three-year terms.

Town asked to approve relatively flat budget

STRONG – Town officials expect smooth sailing come Saturday’s town meeting, with a budget kept as flat as possible due to reductions in fuel expenditures and use of surplus accounts.

The town meeting will be held at the town office Saturday at 9:30 a.m. Elections will be held from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, also at the town office.

Residents are being asked to raise and appropriate roughly $9,000 more this year than they were in 2008. Modest increases in many areas have been offset falling energy prices and additional surplus money released to reduce the local tax burden.

Running for the MSAD 58 seat is incumbent Ann Schwink, who is being challenged by Andrew Pratt II for a three-year term on the school board.

Three residents, incumbents Clyde Barker and Rupert Pratt are running to retain their selectman seats against challenger Rebecca Croteau. The two candidates receiving the highest number of votes will be elected for three-year terms.

Also, Lois Barker, Scott Dyar and Eloise Stevens are running unopposed for three seats on the budget committee. In Strong, these positions are six-year terms.

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