June 21, 2018
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Hermon to consider general assistance funding, purchases

By Dawn Gagnon, BDN Staff

HERMON, Maine — Residents will be asked to increase funding for general assistance and authorize the purchases of property, a firetruck and a dump truck during a special town meeting set for 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 19, in the Public Safety Building meeting room.

A public hearing regarding state-mandated changes to the shoreline zoning ordinance will follow at 7 p.m. The hearing is being conducted to provide residents a chance to weigh in on the changes before they are enacted by the Town Council.

During the special town meeting, voters will be asked to transfer $58,000 from the fund balance account to address a potential shortfall in the general assistance program, which is required by state law.

In a memo last month to town councilors, Town Manager Clinton Deschene said that from July 1 to Nov. 30, 2010, the town had 38 applications for assistance, 29 of which were eligible. The total amount disbursed for those cases, he said, was $12,984.

Over the same period last year, however, the town had 67 applications of which 62 were eligible, Deschene noted. A total of $29,059 was disbursed for those cases.

Voters then will consider spending $159,000 for the purchase of property located at 299 Fuller Road, adjacent to the town office and Public Safety Building.

It’s not yet clear how the property would be used but Deschene said it made sense to buy the adjacent parcel now because it might be more difficult — and costly — to try to do that should the town need the property in the future.

The town’s options for the near future include renting out the house on the property or using it for storage, he said.

Residents also will consider buying a firetruck for $120,000 and a dump truck for up to $50,000, should a good deal come up in near future.

If approved, the new firetruck would save the town an estimated $10,000 a year in maintenance and fuel costs, Deschene said.

The special town meeting warrant and public hearing notice are available on the town’s website at www.hermon.net and at the town office.

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