Sewer rate process, hunting boundaries to be discussed

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JAY — Selectmen have a hefty agenda for Monday that includes a sewer billing recommendation, guidelines for prohibited areas of hunting on town recreation property, and an industrial assessing proposal.

The meeting is at 6:30 p.m. March 1 at the town office.

The Sewer Committee plans to recommend that the town continue to assess sewer users a flat rate fee for one more year so they can do more study on the issue, Town Manager Ruth Cushman said.

Sewer users are currently charged $290 per unit, which is one single-family residence, one apartment or one business, in most cases.

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Selectmen, as sewer trustees, set the rate each year.

An earlier committee recommendation was to overhaul the fee system to be based on how water is used and to set a base rate and cubic-foot rate. It was determined that it would be too much of a burden on sewer users to transition immediately to pay the full cost of sewer operation and maintenance.

Currently sewer users pay a flat rate and taxes cover the rest of the budget.

Selectmen did agree to raise revenue last month for the 2010-11 budgets that would set the user rate at about $312 per unit. A public hearing will be held before that is set.

Town Recreation Committee Chairman Rob Taylor will also discuss where the boundaries should be to prohibit hunting on about 200 acres behind the schools.

State law says people can’t hunt within 500 feet of a school, Cushman said.

Selectmen will also consider having John O’Donnell & Associates expand its residential and business assessment to include industrial assessing, she said. Corporate valuations have done the industrial assessment for the town for some time but since the firm is not licensed in Maine, O’Donnell’s representatives have to review the information, she said.

O’Donnell is proposing the cost of that service be an additional $16,000, Cushman said.

The cost of the residential assessing service fluctuates each year, depending on the number of changes. The town has paid up to $30,000 for the services in the past but most recently it has been less than $20,000.

dperry@sunjournal.com

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