DURHAM – Selectmen, acting as assessors, set the 2004 property tax rate at $19.50 per $1,000 valuation Tuesday night. That’s 90 cents more than last year.

The net amount to be raised in local taxes will be $3,349,542, and revenues are expected to total $3,637,752. The amount for town operations is $1,541,372; for schools $5,179,572; and for county taxes $266,350.

Selectmen awarded a paving contract to low bidder Pike Industries for $1.17 per square foot for reclamation and $35.50 per ton for asphalt. Added to the contract was necessary hand work, which wasn’t included in the original specifications, at a rate of $88 per ton. Preliminary work is expected to begin in about a month.

Six bids were received for the Fire Department’s forestry truck, which was sold to high bidder Jeff Pulsifer of Lisbon Falls for $2,167. Five other bids were received, ranging from $2,075 to $325.

The annual agreement with the Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments for participation in the hazardous waste collection Sept. 25 in Lewiston was signed.

Less-than-favorable weather conditions and other competing events were blamed for low receipts at Walker Brothers Circus last weekend. Proceeds after expenses were to have gone toward vinyl siding for the Eureka Community Center. The $158 in proceeds and a $17 donation paid the town’s expenses, Deborah Larrabee told selectmen.

Selectman Mike VanDerWerf said he was impressed with the circus. It was “clean, the animals well cared for, and they provided a good show,” he said.

Jane Blais, representing the School Committee, outlined the timeline for the Community School District committee meetings, which the public may attend but not participate in. Selectmen were first told the meetings would not be public, and they objected. They contended that under the state right-to-know law, all meetings are to be public, unless they are executive sessions.

The first meeting of the committee members from Lisbon and Durham is tentatively set for July 20, at a time and location to be announced. Residents who have questions or want to make their positions known on forming the Community School District with Lisbon should contact a School Committee member before or after meetings, Blais said.

There will be public hearings later.

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