MEXICO – Selectmen welcomed a new member to the board and re-elected the chairman and vice chairman during Wednesday’s organizational meeting.

They also heard an update on revenues, and decided to put two tax-acquired properties out to bid.

Former Selectman Reggie Arsenault was elected to the board during Tuesday’s election. He will finish out the term of Arthur Bordeau.

Incumbent Richard Philbrick narrowly defeated Byron Ouellette, a Budget Committee member who made a first-time bid for office. Philbrick was re-elected vice chairman and Barbara Laramee was re-elected chairman.

The board also agreed to set Oct. 23 and March 5 as the due dates for payment of property taxes. Residents pay half by the first date and the other half on the second date.

Any taxes unpaid are subject to 8 percent interest per year.

In other organizational matters, selectmen agreed to hold a second meeting this month, but only one in July, tentatively July 22. The boards of Mexico and Dixfield are expected to re-start discussions on the possibility of merging their police departments in August.

The board unanimously voted to put two tax-acquired properties out for bid. One is a 10-acre parcel and adjacent house lot on the Backkingdom Road that has tax liens totaling $1,650. Its minimum value is $20,000. The minimum bid was set at $15,000.

The second property is on Osgood Avenue and once served as a bakery. About $4,400 in tax and sewer liens are on it, and it’s valued at about $19,000. The minimum bid was set at $7,500.

In budgetary matters, Town Manager John Madigan said the town has been certified by the state for having its properties valued at 100 percent. Because of this, tree growth and homestead exemptions will be reimbursed for the full amount. However, he said next year the rate of reimbursement will drop.

He also learned that the amount of state revenue sharing the town will receive will be at least $103,000 less in 2009-10 than in 2008-09.

These factors, along with any undesignated fund balance remaining on July 1 will determine the upcoming year’s tax rate. Now, that rate is $23.35 per $1,000 valuation. The new rate will be set later this summer.

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