Durham forming committee on capital improvements

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DURHAM — The town is looking for residents to volunteer for a Capital Improvement Policy Advisory Committee.

The committee will develop policy guidelines for evaluating annual capital expenditure requests, such as vehicles and equipment. With that policy in place, the town hopes to develop a Capital Improvement Plan to better prioritize and plan for future capital expenditures.

The deadline for applications is 4;30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 7. Forms can be found online at www.durhamme.com. Once completed, they can be sent by fax or email to Town Administrator Ruth Glaeser or left at the Town Office at 630 Hallowell Road.

Five or six members are needed, according to Glaeser.

Glaeser said the Board of Selectmen decided forming one all-inclusive plan would help streamline, prioritize and manage money for all of the town’s needed capital improvements.

“We realized that without some sort of planning, we keep taking out bonds,” Glaeser said, noting recent ones for road improvements, a new ambulance and a new firetruck.

Until now, she said, the town has operated using two different funds, one for the Fire Department and one for public works.

“(The board) decided it’s time to make a townwide plan so that we can manage our money in a better way and consolidate it too,” Glaeser said.

Glaeser added that it will be up to the committee to recommend whether they’d like to look at expenses for road and infrastructure improvements separately or as one.

“We have a lot of roads that are in need of repair and that’s very expensive,” she added. “That’s been an ongoing issue.”

Glaeser anticipates about four or five meetings of the committee will be held through fall and winter before members are expected to make a recommendation to the board. Once they do, and the board approves a plan, she said selectmen will likely form a standing committee to implement and manage the plan.

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