HAMPDEN, Maine — Town councilors voted Monday night to keep the stipends they receive for attending meetings and the town’s contribution toward their Internet costs.
They defeated a measure calling for them to give up their payments by a 3-2 vote. The measure would have saved the town an estimated $23,000, according to Town Manager Susan Lessard.
Council members receive $30 for each regular and special meeting they attend, with the exception of the mayor, who receives $35. Councilors also receive $50 a quarter for Internet use.
Councilor Ivan McPike suggested the cost-cutting measure during a recent special council meeting during which preliminary budget figures were shared.
Resident Terry McAvoy said he was in favor of the move, calling it “a very acceptable gesture on the part of the council showing the town that they’re willing to sacrifice when [town] departments may be asked to do so.”
In other meeting business, the council awarded the contract for a sewer project on Route 1A to T Buck Construction, which submitted the low bid of $811,124, and approved related sewer bond documents. The work, which will be done this summer, involves the nearly mile-long stretch that was the site of a waterline project last summer.
Councilors also voted to set aside their usual bid procedures and hire General Code, a company based in Rochester, New York, to codify the town charter and the town’s ordinances at a cost of $14,900.
Lessard said the project will involve a review of charter provisions and ordinances to make sure they are consistent and that they do not conflict with state or federal law or each other. The town started the codification process in the late 1980s but the work was never completed, she said.
Correction: A previous version of this story erroneously reported that Hampden councilors voted to give up their stipends. In a 3-2 vote, councilors voted to keep their stipends.