DURHAM – Voters at Saturday’s annual town meeting will be asked to consider establishing the Durham Home Heating Program to financially assist residents who may not qualify for General Assistance.

It would be administered by the general assistance director using that program’s guidelines for eligibility. Funding could be through public and private donations or fundraisers, as directed by the administrator.

The article is one of 50 on the warrant, that includes many for other financial needs.

The municipal spending proposals of selectmen and the Budget Committee differ by $20,819. Selectmen recommend $2,464,177; the committee, $2,443,358.

A total of $1,182,208 would need to be raised in local taxes if the committee’s recommendations are accepted, Chairman Allan Purinton said.

Major areas of spending include: winter roads at $604,455, tar roads at $444,609, county tax at $322,601, fire/rescue at $231,773, and solid waste $179,676.

The $183,725 salary and benefits proposal includes no pay hikes.

Selectmen and the committee agree the town should transfer $7,100 from undesignated funds as its share toward replacing a salt-contaminated well and associated items at a Hallowell Road residence.

Article 6A, which was inserted into the warrant after the committee met, seeks $13,601 to cover overdrafts in four accounts.

Another late addition to the warrant is Article 14A requesting $4,500 from the fire/rescue capital improvement program account for floor repair and partial trim replacement at the fire station. The Budget Committee recommends no money be spent.

In Article 13, selectmen are requesting $1,751 for the bridge reserve account, but the committee nothing.

Voters will also be asked to accept another section of Rangdale Road, David Louis Drive, Chickadee Lane and Whippoorwill Drive as town roads.

The meeting begins at 9 a.m. at the Durham Elementary School gym.


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