PARIS — Selectman Ted Kurtz proposed Monday that the town Budget Committee should undertake several new responsibilities.

The nine-member committee has typically worked in an advisory capacity during the budget process. It makes recommendations following the budget suggestions of the various departments and town manager. More recently, the committee has agreed to start meeting monthly and begin analyzing the town’s finances.

“We’re just kind of in our infancy,” Chairman Vic Hodgkins said. “We do want to evolve.”

Kurtz said he would like the board to keep track of several factors related to the budget. One possibility, he said, was to look at the likely necessities of the different departments in the future.

“I think that you can sit down with a little bit of thought and look at every single line item in our budget, and you can pretty well project out three years as to what’s going to be necessary to fill that line in the budget,” he said.

Kurtz said such a plan would offer more insight in how to handle the budget from year to year. He also criticized “up the sleeve” expenditures this year which he felt should have been brought to the attention during the budget process.

In April, selectmen approved the use of $46,875 to purchase a used street sweeper to replace a deteriorating vehicle. A special town meeting last month approved $90,995 to improve daytime emergency coverage by staffing the fire station with three per diem firefighters for one year.

“I want your budget committee to be more of a watchdog,” Kurtz told Hodgkins. “I want you to aggressively seek out these needs so they don’t suddenly pop up after the Budget Committee is committed to the process.”

Kurtz said he would also like the committee to do a yearly evaluation of the strength of the town’s tax base to determine its capacity to sustain budget increases.

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