Camden’s Select Board spent 90 minutes Tuesday evening in final review of the town’s proposed $5.9 million municipal budget before sending it off to voters for annual town meeting on June 9.

The town meeting warrant approval is tentative pending any last-minute changes or petitions that may arrive at the town office by municipal deadline of April 26.

After discussing the merits of setting more money aside to keep police cruisers well maintained, the salt and sand shed well stocked, and to keep approximately $14,400 in a fund for economic development purposes, the Select Board approved a budget that is $15,400 more than what the budget committee had recommended. That $15,400 represents $1,000 restored for cruiser maintenance, and the $14,400 (annual income earned by the town from leasing land to Verizon for a cell tower) for economic development, an insurance hedge in case citizens do not approve creating a new position and office of economic development, with an $85,000 price tag.

The budget of $5,908,435 is up $137,501 from the current budget of $5,770,934. According to calculations made April 20 at the regularly scheduled Select Board meeting, the proposed budget will increase the net tax commitment by $101,186. Tax commitment is the portion of money raised by Camden property owners to support municipal expenditures beyond what various revenue sources are able to fund. This year, Camden taxpayers were asked to raise $3,910,573 to help fund the town’s current budget.

The proposed budget approved April 20 includes hiring an economic development director with an $85,000 office, spending $26,000 toward a new police cruiser and tucking $25,000 away for the eventual purchase of a new fire truck.

The budget process began early in the winter when department heads submitted their budgets to the town manager. After hashing out proposed account expenditures of the departments, the budget then went to the budget committee, which returned its recommended budget to the Select Board.

Within the proposed budget, general government increased from $1.3 million to $1.4 million; public safety increased from $1.6 million to $1.7 million, including a $36,000 increase in fire hydrant fees to accommodate a 23 percent Aqua Maine water rate price increase to help fund construction of a filtration plant; the streets and sidewalks, public works, parking and tree program line has decreased from $1,092,760 to $1,083,800; health and welfare has increased from $35,422 to $37,656; leisure services decreased from $820,532 to $807,831, with $5,000 less budgeted for dams, and $5,000 less budgeted for the Camden Snow Bowl ($20,000 to $15,000); and cemetery care increased from $71,069 to $77,447, with maintenance to Oak Hill Annex scheduled.

The town’s total debt principal decreased from $422,049 to $382,649, while capital reserves increased from $49,400 to $105,400, with $25,000 put away for a new fire truck and $14,400 put into the economic development reserve line.

Camden’s budgeted capital improvements for 2010-2011 include spending $39,000 for repairing the Steamboat Landing drainage, installing new catch basins and repairing the storm water line to avoid sink holes and erosion of private property. The budget also includes a $71,600 expenditure to build a new bridge and install a new culvert on Molyneaux Road.

At town meeting, citizens will also consider a plan to improve the Rawson Avenue Pump Station for the wastewater treatment system. On April 20 the Select Board approved a notice of intent to award a $498,000 bid to Apex Construction Inc. of Rochester, N.H., to complete the work. A bond would be issued for the project, and the Select Board made clear that it wanted Camden residents to know that the town of Rockport will also be contributing a to-be-determined percentage of the bond repayments.

Ross Parker, superintendent of the wastewater department, said Camden’s system receives approximately 60,000 gallons a day of Rockport’s waste through the Rawson Avenue station.

Town Manager Roberta Smith said the total project cost is $698,000, with some of the funding deriving from wastewater fund reserves and the rest from a state revolving loan fund that features a 1.75 percent interest rate with a 15-year term.

Other town warrant articles include amending the shoreland zoning ordinance, the town’s zoning ordinance, approving submission of a community development block grant application to the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development on behalf of Mind’s Eye travel for $50,000; and another such grant application, this one for $250,000, on behalf of the nonprofit Camden Affordable Housing Organization relating to down payment assistance for moderate income homebuyers for the Lupine Terrace subdivision.

The warrant also includes election of one Select Board member, one representative to Maine School Administrative District 28 and the Five Town Community School District, and one member of the Camden Personnel Board when they vote by secret ballot in the state primary election on Tuesday, June 8 at the fire station. Camden Town Meeting will be held Wednesday, June 9 at 7 p.m. at the Camden Opera House.

Camden nomination petitions are due back in the town office by 3:30 p.m. on Monday, April 26.

In other business, Camden’s Select Board endorsed proclaiming April 23 to May 2 as Jazz Week 2010 Made in New England, as requested by Camden Opera House Manager Kerry Hadley. Camden is one venue among many for the Jazz Week performances with the production of Stormy Weather, the life and music of Lena Horne.