Board: Auburn City Council

Met: Tuesday, Feb. 7,  2011

Issue: Each year, councilors adopt a spending plan for the coming fiscal year, which runs from July through June. City Manger Glenn Aho said his staff has started work developing their budgets, which will be combined in a single proposed spending plan later this spring. Councilors will add items to or subtract them from that budget before adopting it.
The Scoop: Aho said Monday this year’s budget discussions by city department heads would be more focused. He said he expects the council would schedule about 12 meetings during the budget process.
Up Next: Aho said he expects to present a first draft for councilor review by mid-March.

Issue: Councilors rely on  several advisory boards and committees to help them review issues. Those boards are filled with resident volunteers appointed by the City Council.
The Scoop: For the last several years, two councilors have reviewed applications from volunteers seeking a spot on a city committee, recommending picks to their council colleagues. This year, some councilors said they wanted all members to review those applications, dispensing with the appointment committee. They did that, at their last City Council meeting, going behind closed doors to discuss their opinions about applicants. Councilors will get all volunteer applications and will have the choice of having all councilors weigh in on appointments or having a subset review resumes to vet and review applicants.
Up Next: Councilors are scheduled to vote on the new policy as an ordinance at their next meeting.

City codes
Councilors regularly make changes to city ordinances, and it’s important that the city go over the rule books every few years to make sure that the rules are consistent and agree with one another.
Auburn has not reaffirmed its code of ordinances since 1997, and many errors have crept in. The books may not agree from department to department.
The Scoop
: The city has spent $17,076 reviewing the document and it was ready to go Monday night. There are no substantive changes, according to City Clerk Roberta Fogg. Errors and accidental inclusions have been removed.
Up Next: Councilors approved the new code, adopting it with a 4-2 vote. Councilors Dan Herrick and Mike Farrel voted against the resolution.

Holiday donation
Issue: Each December, the cities of Lewiston and Auburn host a holiday celebration, with the lighting of a Christmas tree in one community, followed by a parade between cities and the lighting of the tree in the second city.
The Scoop: Oxford Networks donated $600 to each city to help defray costs from the event. That money will be used to pay for photographs of children taken with Santa Claus at last December’s event.
Up Next: Councilors accepted the donation from Oxford Networks.

Drug forfeitures
Issue: The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency shares proceeds from drug busts with the other police agencies involved.
The Scoop: Councilors on Monday accepted a share of $1,900 in seizures stemming from two arrests. The money will go to Auburn police.

Next meeting: The next regular meeting of the Auburn City Council is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday , Feb. 21.

Contact government reporter Scott Taylor via phone at 689-2846 or via e-mail at [email protected]

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