MEXICO — The Board of Selectmen voted 4-1 Tuesday evening to ask the Rumford Public Library to draft a proposal on what it would cost Mexico to use the library.
Selectman Andy Dupuis said he wanted to see if the Rumford library could look into the matter before Mexico sets its budget.
“I think we need to get started on some of this stuff before the budget season starts,” Dupuis said. “That way, we’re getting ahead of it.”
Selectman Reggie Arsenault said he was confused about why Dupuis was focusing on receiving a consolidation report from the library and no other departments.
“After the joint meeting with Rumford, we’ve been working with all of the departments in town to make sure they give us proposals for consolidating departments,” Arsenault said. “I’m just a little confused at why we’re going after the library. I thought we said we were starting with police.”
Town Manager John Madigan said, “Andy, I know you weren’t at that joint meeting a couple of weeks ago, but the selectmen agreed that they wanted to start with consolidation by looking at the police departments.”
Madigan said he has begun meeting with other departments, including the highway crews for both towns, and has asked them to draft proposals for consolidation.
“I’m not trying to jump ahead,” Dupuis said.
Selectman Albert Aniel said he saw two ways that Mexico could move forward with consolidating libraries: having the town of Mexico pay a membership fee for every Mexico resident who goes to Rumford to take out books, or create a sharing agreement with Rumford for one library for both towns.
Selectman Byron Ouellette said he believed that asking the Rumford library to draft a consolidation proposal was a step in the right direction.
“Even though it’s only a $60,000 or $70,000 account, compared to some of our bigger accounts, it’s still something we should be looking at,” Ouellette said.
In other business, selectmen unanimously voted to approve an amendment to the appendices of the town’s General Assistance ordinance that changes the amount of money households can receive.
Madigan said the amendments affect “the amount we’re allowed to give a person, other than an emergency.”
The increases selectmen approved were:
* One-person household: $551, $8 increase.
* Two-person household: $610, $8 increase.
* Three-person household: $735, $9 increase.
* Four-person household: $992, $13 increase.
* Five-person household: $1,284, $14 increase.