Rumford board to present 2015 Citizen of the Year award

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RUMFORD — Selectmen will present the 2015 Citizen of the Year Award to Harrison M. Burns on Thursday night.

The meeting will open at 6:30 p.m. in Rumford Falls Auditorium.

Selectmen voted 3-0 at their Nov. 20 meeting to name Burns, who was nominated by his brother, Elliot “Bud” Burns.

Harrison Burns has held many municipal and committee positions in Rumford for the past 40 years, including acting town manager. He has also served on the Rumford Point Fire Department for many years and serves on the Rumford Board of Appeals and the Rumford Water District Board, and with SCORE, helping people create small-business plans.

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Harrison Burns also helped organize Rumford Point Little League Baseball for many years.

In other business, selectmen are expected to approve property bids for town land, discuss payroll possibilities for a four-day workweek, consolidation issues with Mexico and extending the Charter Commission.

Resident Gayle Sirois wants something done about speeding on Prospect Avenue and people plowing snow onto the sidewalks.

The board will also field a request from the Rumford Performing Arts Committee to pay a $300 annual fee to the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers for copyrighted music played in Rumford Falls Auditorium at special events.

Jim Rinaldo, chairman of the Performing Arts Committee, said the the fee is becoming a hardship.

The committee has been operating for about six years and has held five Christmas shows and entertained more than 1,000 men, women and children, Rinaldo said. It has offered free homemade cookies, hot chocolate, water and coffee to all who attended and have given each attending child a free gift.

“It is never very much, but for some, it may be quite a lot,” Rinaldo wrote Tuesday in an email to selectmen via Executive Secretary Terri Palmer. “The reason we do it for free is because we had young families come to our show and (they) couldn’t even afford a minimal fee.”

He said the committee has also paid for new audio equipment and the installation of outlets in the fire station side of the hall and the stage. Members have even paid out of their own pockets to help.

Selectmen are also asked to approve a permit for the annual Christmas in the Valley Parade, which will take place at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 5.

The route heads up Hancock Street, down Lincoln Avenue, up Waldo Street and ends on Congress Street. Floats will be stopped on Congress Street while Santa lights the Christmas tree. he will meet with children at the Rumford fire station afterward.

Remaining agenda items include a couple of quitclaim deeds and a mortgage note, approval of a liquor license and special amusement permit for the American Legion, as well as choosing dates for January 2015 meetings.

tkarkos@sunjournal.com

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