Turner to start building budget

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TURNER — The Board of Selectmen announced a schedule of meetings Monday night as it begins to develop a town budget for 2013-14.

For the most part, the board will meet separately from the Budget Committee as it makes its draft. Afterward, it will meet with the Budget Committee to reconcile any differences between the two proposals.

The Budget Committee will hold its first meeting at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 9, in the fire station. Selectmen will hold their first work session at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 15, in the Town Office. The public is welcome at these meetings.

Also Monday, selectmen adopted Town Manager Scott LaFlamme’s recommendation to switch to the TRIOS package of Town Office software at the beginning of the next fiscal year. TRIOS has been adopted by several nearby towns.

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LaFlamme said he intends to reorganize the office when longtime selectmen’s assistant Sandra Philipon retires. They will be looking for a computer literate clerk who will interact well with the public and can take on some of Philipon’s duties.

Selectmen directed LaFlamme to seek proposals for elevator inspection and maintenance services. Selectman Ralph Caldwell stressed that the proposals should clearly state travel expenses, since the present contractor was charging for it.

Selectmen accepted Ann Brown’s offer to have her fourth grade Girl Scouts do an energy audit on the Leavitt Institute Building. The audit will fulfill the requirements for an Energy Assessment Merit Badge for the girls.

Town officials expressed gratitude for the $2,000 donation from 1960 Leavitt Institute graduate Peter Gebhardt. The donation, which will be placed in the Leavitt Institute Building Fund, is to memorialize two of his classmates.

The Androscoggin Land Trust and NextEra Energy are working toward developing a network of outdoor recreation opportunities on Gulf Island/Deer Rips next to the Androscoggin Riverlands State Park. The finished project will include a boat launch, riverfront camping and picnic facilities. The site is accessed from Center Bridge Road in Turner.

NextEra has presented a progress report to the Federal Energy Regulation Committee. A copy is in the Town Office for review. The public has until Feb. 27 to make comments.

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