Waldoboro selectmen set tax rate, emergency vehicle purchase to voters
Waldoboro — At a special town meeting Sept. 13, Waldoboro selectmen set the 2013 tax rate and narrowly decided to ask voters to purchase an emergency vehicle in November.
Selectmen also met to sign the lease/transfer of ownership agreement with the Central Lincoln County YMCA. The YMCA is planning on redeveloping the former A.D. Gray Middle School into a recreational facility. Waldoboro residents approved the agreement Sept. 11.
Selectman Craig Cooley said although he recognizes the need for a new fire truck, the timing is not right, adding he would feel more comfortable prolonging the issue.
"We need to be more stable financially before big expenditures come, " he said.
Board member James Bodman disagreed and said the truck — meant for dual purpose as a pumper and emergency vehicle — is imperative for the town. Waldoboro cannot rely solely on mutual aid from neighboring towns to assist in emergency situations, he said.
The lease/purchase agreement for the vehicle will be for a five-year term. If approved in November, the town will pay $41,000 a year, which includes interest.
Steve Cartwright said although he regrets not having a reserve account to pay for the emergency vehicle, he considers maintaining sub-standard equipment a risk.
"We all agree there's merit to the request," he said.
The board voted 3-2 to allow the issue to go to voters in November. Voting against the measure were Cooley and Carl Cunningham.
The mil rate was set at $13.50 per $1,000 of assessed property. The 2013 fiscal year commitment, including the budget, county assessment and the MSAD 40 assessment totals $7,079,732, an increase of 3.1 percent from last year's $6,860,561 commitment. The town is expected to rebuild a budget surplus of $1 million in five years, said Town Manager John Spear.
Courier Publications reporter Juliette Laaka can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 118 or via email at JLaaka@courierpublicationsllc.com.