Municipal elections will be held Friday, March 26 in the Bryant Room of the Gibbs Library in Washington, as polls open for annual town meeting at 10 a.m. and remain open until 8 p.m.

Then on Saturday, March 27 at 10 a.m., citizens will convene for their open town meeting at Prescott Memorial School to consider a lengthy warrant that includes 34 articles.

On Friday, March 26 at the polls, the town will elect a selectman for a three-year term and a representative to serve on the Maine School Administrative District 40 board, and will decide whether to adopt a revised land use ordinance.

Copies of the proposed revised ordinance are available at the town’s Web site (see below for link) and at the town office. The ordinance changes reflect a three-year process during which the town has worked to take its original 1988 land use ordinance, along with amendments made over the ensuing decades, and reshape it into a comprehensive overhaul.

“We felt it was time to revise the ordinance,” said Washington Selectman Don Grinnell, who added that since 1988, the state’s environmental and planning rules, regulations and guidelines have also evolved.

Last June, ordinance changes went before the town at referendum and failed by three votes. After that, the town’s Land Use Committee met with the Planning Board and Appeals Board, both of which made additional comments and suggestions on the document.

Town meeting day on Saturday, March 27 will begin with a breakfast that will be served at the Mt. Olivet Lodge in Washington Village from 7 to 9 a.m., with eggs, pancakes, bacon, sausage, home fries, biscuits and gravy, toast, juice and coffee. The cost is $5 to benefit the lodge building fund.

In addition to regular town business, such as electing Budget Committee members, authorizing the plumbing inspector to be paid from fees collected from plumbing permits, and fixing the town’s tax due dates, Washington citizens will consider the following:

Whether to allow a 2 percent discount on taxes if paid within 30 days of invoice date, and to take from overlay the amount to cover discounts. The Budget Committee voted 5-2 to recommend no discount on taxes.

Whether to sell the old town garage/storage building on Razorville Road to the Washington Historical Society for the price of $1.

If the town wants to offer a voluntary retirement plan to town employees who have been employed more than 12 months and who earn $5,000 or more per year.  If the employee volunteered to join the program, the town would match up to 3 percent of any amount contributed to the program by the employee.

Washington townspeople will also consider whether to spend this coming year:

$154,831 from property taxation for 2010 annual Knox County assessments that include $125,608 for county expenses and $29,233 for the Knox Regional Communications Center (911 dispatch).

$75,587 for general town government.

$28,614 for insurance.

$100,953 for salaries, stipends and payroll expenses.

$294,419.00 for town road maintenance.

$3,500 for general assistance.

$52,322 for public safety (fire department).

$39,150 for utilities and maintenance (building, cemetery, street lights, snow removal).

$4,600 on boards and committees.

$18,500 for roll-over accounts (bicentennial, cemetery headstone restoration, recreation and firehouse exhaust system).

$12,221 for miscellaneous accounts (provider agencies).

$50,848 from the 2010 Urban/Rural Initiative Program for road improvement.

The town will also consider whether to spend $25,000 from the Town Reserve Fund to pay for crushing of tailings left over from several previous year’s screening operations.

To help offset the property tax bills for local citizens, Washington anticipates revenue to derive from excise tax ($200,000), state revenue sharing ($70,000), interest on overdue taxes ($15,000) and other smaller fees, permits and reimbursements, all totaling $322,500.