Budget committee supports ambulance buy

Posted:  Tuesday, September 12, 2017 - 8:00am

The Wiscasset Budget Committee recommends voters on Nov. 7 pass an article for the purchase of a $96,690 ambulance. Monies needed to buy the 2013 Ford Ambulance will come from capital reserve with no impact on this year’s property taxes.

The proposed ambulance purchase is among four warrant articles but the only one requiring a Budget Committee recommendation.

Committee members Fred Quivey, Bill Laliberte, Kim Andersson and Zach Gray supported the ambulance article. Ervin Deck arrived too late for the vote but said he too supported passage of the article.

At the meeting’s outset, Laliberte was elected chairman. He said providing the ambulance service with a dependable vehicle would help generate additional revenues. Monies from extending ambulance services to Dresden will be put towards the ambulance purchase.

Absentee ballots for the general election will be available Oct. 6. The select board will finalize the warrant Tuesday night.

The committee also discussed setting goals for the year ahead. Andersson hopes the committee can do more to help voters understand the town budget process, as well as the impact individual warrant articles will have on property taxes. “People tell me they are overwhelmed when they see 60 or more articles on the ballot,” she said.

The committee also touched on the select board’s recent decision to have the town manager come up with $500,000 in proposed cuts to the 2018-19 town budget.

The committee elected Gray vice chair and Quivey its clerk. They agreed to hold this year’s meetings on the second Wednesday of the month at 6 p.m. in the municipal building hearing room.

Former Select Board member Judy Flanagan offered encouragement and advice to the committee.