RUMFORD – Higher costs for ambulance service and the town’s refusal to support a new ambulance building are among issues on the agenda for Thursday’s selectmen’s meeting.

The regular twice-monthly meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. in the Municipal Auditorium.

Town Manager Jim Doar said he’s not sure what action selectmen might take, but among ambulance-related topics up for discussion is a more than $1,500 monthly increase in the town’s cost for Med-Care Ambulance Service.

He said January’s bill increased from $6,400 to $8,000. He said part of that increase is due to a planned $2 million construction project for a new ambulance service building.

Several weeks ago, a majority of the board refused to support Med-Care’s plans for that structure. The 10-year interlocal agreement with Med-Care expires at the end of June.

The town’s Med-Care representatives are expected to attend Thursday’s meeting.

Also up for a decision by selectmen is whether to cut services or push for a vote that would allow the town to override the LD 1 tax cap amount of $125,000. Doar said with $200,000 due on debt service for the Municipal Building renovation, increased Med-Care costs, union-negotiated salary increases and other items, the town would have to allow an increase of at least $300,000 over last year’s tax commitment.

“We need direction from selectmen,” said Doar, who added that some tough decisions may have to be made as the 2008-2009 municipal budget is developed.

The board will also decide what to do about a tax-acquired blighted building, how to have board meetings covered by the local access channel, and hear a plan to get more business participation in a federal facade grant.


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