HOULTON, Maine — During a nearly two-hour meeting Monday evening, town councilors voted 5-0 to transfer $128,200 from the town’s surplus fund to cover budget shortfalls in eight departments — police, public works, fire, ambulance, Civic Center, the Gentle Memorial Building, public buildings and administration.
Town Manager Doug Hazlett told the council the shortfalls were caused by last year’s gas, diesel and fuel oil prices as well as an increase in legal charges for the town.
Hazlett noted that Aroostook County was particularly hard hit by snow removal costs as well as the high cost of diesel needed to fuel the trucks to plow and haul away the white stuff after storms.
Last year, The County recorded nearly 200 inches of snow fall. Although winter officially began last weekend, Houlton already has recorded more than 30 inches of snow.