EDDINGTON, Maine — Residents at the annual town meeting on March 20 will decide whether to change the annual budget cycle to align with state and federal budget cycles, to update two town ordinances and to increase the budget, Town Manger Russell Smith said Monday.
“The total increase is $61,689 and we’re taking $20,000 from unappropriated surplus and revenue from new homes and businesses” to offset it, the town manager said.
The total increase covers about $7,800 more for human services, including $4,000 for a municipal field recreation project; a $27,000 increase in firefighter compensation; and a one-time $5,000 request to support a veterans memorial that local Boy Scout Josh Baillargeon, 14, has decided to build to earn the rank of Eagle Scout.
Even with the extra amount being requested, the bottom line “should balance out” if the school budget comes in at the same amount as last year, Smith said.
The school budget will not be completed until June, which is one reason the change in the annual budget cycle is on the town warrant, he said.
Residents will decide whether they want to change the Feb. 1 to Jan. 31 annual town budget cycle to July 1 to June 30.
“This budget will take us through next year,” Smith said, explaining that whether the change is made residents at next year’s annual town meeting will decide either on an 18-month budget, to get them through to June 2014, or a six-month budget that takes them through June 2013.
Residents also will consider two ordinance updates. One would strengthen rules for subdivision developers and the roads they build. A second zoning ordinance change would incorporate the proposed road changes and others concerning lot sizes and signs, Smith said. Copies of both proposed ordinances, which will replace the existing subdivision and zoning ordinances for the town, are available at the town office and at the town’s website, eddingtonmaine.gov.
The annual town meeting will begin at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 20, at the Eddington Elementary School.