PRESENT: Councilor Friedman, Councilor Perkins, Councilor King, Manager W. Reed, Deputy Clerk K. Humphrey, Office Administrator J. Reed, Assessor/CEO A. Thomas, Fire Chief G. Martin, Public Works Superintendent B. Stoyell, Parks & Recreation Director R. Young, Police Chief M. Leonard, Members of the Public. Councilor Parker & Chairman Hathaway were absent and excused.
Councilor King nominated Councilor Friedman as Chairman Protem. Councilor Perkins seconded. Voted 2-0 in favor. Councilor Friedman abstained.
ITEM 1. The February 14, 2011 Veazie Town Council meeting was called to order at 7:00PM.
ITEM 2. Consideration of the Minutes
Motion By: Councilor King —to accept the January 31, 2011 meeting minutes as written. Seconded: Councilor Perkins, Voted 3-0 in favor.
ITEM 3. Consideration of the Agenda
Councilor Perkins stated he would like to talk about the upcoming budget year and the direction the Town is going to go in. This was added as item 5b.
ITEM 4. Comments from the Public
There were no comments from the public.
ITEM 5a. CBDG – Letter of Intent
Mike Bush of Penquis Mike Bush was present to discuss a Community Block Development Grant. The Town of Veazie would be the lead community for a $300,000 grant to improve housing conditions among residents suffering health affects from poor quality housing. The group of communities invited to participate include Holden, Hampden, Old Town and Orono. Mike Bush outlined that it would benefit low to moderate income families. In the towns included there are 9000 families eligible.
Councilor Perkins inquired on whether all bills would be vetted through Veazie’s office since Veazie would be the lead community. Mike Bush stated that they would be. Councilor Perkins inquired whether that responsibility could be divided out amongst the communities. Mike Bush explained that the Town will hire an administrator to do everything. The town will just deal with the invoices which will most likely come from Penquis rather than all of the various contractors.
Member of the public Gary Brooks asked if the administrator would be paid out of the grant. Mike Bush stated they would.
Motion By: Councilor Perkins—to authorize the Town Manager to submit a letter of intent for the proposed regional CBDG application by February 18th and to designate the administrator of the grant from the RFQs received. Seconded: Councilor King, Voted 2-1 in favor.
ITEM 5b. Budget Update
Manager Reed stated that they received some good news from Representative Jim Parker and revenue sharing figures will be better at the end of the year. The RSU audit came out very good. They have a good surplus of $1.6 million which far exceeds the loss of funding from the State.
Manager Reed outlined that Assessor Allan Thomas met with Casco Bay and it appears there will be some increase value in personal property.
It was outlined that the Budget Committee had met once already and was on track.
ITEM 6a. Property Tax Foreclosure List Discussion
Deputy Tax Collector Julie Reed stated that the Town had one property last year that foreclosed and there are four that foreclosed this year. She is looking for direction on what the Council would like to do. She outlined that one owner has come forward and arranged a payment plan.
Motion By: Councilor Perkins—to attempt to work with the property owners and if an agreement cannot be made by April 1st the Town will start the collection process. Seconded: Councilor King. Voted 3-0 in favor.
ITEM 7. Additions by Council
Manager Reed outlined that the Community Center Redevelopment Advisory Committee is applying for another Maine Foundation Grant. It is the second half of the original grant.
ITEM 8. Manager’s Report
The Town Council reviewed the following items:
a. a copy of the RSU 26 Audit Report.
b. a copy of a list of proposed legislation that may impact “Towns”.
c. an email from a resident stating that the Fire Department did an outstanding job at her house.
d. an email with concerns pertaining to Northeast Patients Group.
e. an email from Councilor Perkins to Barney Silver pertaining to snow removal.
f. a copy of the Water District’s meeting minutes
g. copies of two certificates of appreciation from the Maine Criminal Justice Academy
ITEM 9. Requests for Information and Town Council Comments
Councilor Perkins inquired on a communications tower update. Manager Reed stated that he had not heard anything on it, however Dawn Gagnon from the Bangor Daily News was going to be doing a story on it.
Manager Reed also outlined that George Harris will be coming up this week or next to go over his draft findings.
Councilor Perkins inquired on the progress of the Comeau property purchase. Manager Reed stated that he believed all the paperwork was done but he has not spoken with the Town Attorney. It was outlined that funds had not changed hands yet.
Councilor Perkins noted that the security system at the community center wasn’t very good. Manager Reed noted that it worked well for the more important aspect which was the fire alarm.
Protem Chair Friedman inquired if the crosswalk person was paid out of the police budget or the school budget. He noted that the person sits in his car a lot and he has seen some children cross State Street by themselves. Deputy Treasurer Julie Reed stated that it is paid of the police budget.
ITEM 10. Warrants: Town Warrant 17, 17A, 17B and Town Payroll 17 were circulated for signature.
ITEM 11. Adjournment: Motion: Councilor King —to adjourn the February 14, 2011 Town Council Meeting. Seconded: Councilor Perkins. There was no further discussion. Voted 3-0. Meeting adjourned 8:04 pm.
A true record, Attest:
Town of Veazie