DIXFIELD — Selectmen set the property
tax rate at $16.25 per $1,000 valuation at Wednesday night’s board
meeting. That’s the same amount as the current
year.

While the rate won’t likely change, Town Manager Eugene
Skibitsky said his town, like all others, must keep a close watch on
a referendum question coming before voters in November. If it passes, excise taxes will be cut
in half for municipalities.

“We would have to deal with that
during the second half of the fiscal year,” he told selectmen.

He said the tax rate is unchanged, despite higher school and county taxes, because of
low estimates built into the budget for revenue sharing, and a
carryover from the former SAD 21 designated for the town of Dixfield.
The Dixfield district, along with the former SAD 43 in Rumford, and
SAD 39 in Buckfield, merged. With that action, carryover funds were
granted to each member town.

Tax bills are expected to be mailed in
about two weeks. The first half of property taxes must be paid by
Sept. 15. If not, they will be assessed a 9 percent annual interest
rate. The second half of taxes is due in the spring.

In other matters, the board agreed to
buy a new 2009 International plow truck for about $129,000. The budget
had built in $140,000 for the purchase. The town will pay for about
half the cost with surplus money and finance the remainder with a five-year loan.

They also reviewed several proposals
for rebuilding Bryant Street, ranging from $31,700 to nearly $54,000,
and for paving Averill Hill, with a proposed price range of $8,000
to $15,300.

Before a contractor is chosen,
Selectmen Raymond Carlton and Steve Donahue, Skibitsky and a Maine
Department of Transportation representative will meet with each
bidder to discuss the projects. A decision is expected at the
Aug. 31 board meeting, with work to start soon after.

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