Editor’s note: This story has been updated to correct information about the possible purchase of municipal vehicles.

LIVERMORE FALLS — Selectmen this week devised a $2.37 million 2015-16 municipal budget as well as set a separate article for the purchase of capital equipment.

A public hearing on the proposed budget was set for 6:30 p.m., Monday, April 27. Residents will act on the proposal in a series of referendum questions on June 9.

Selectmen will sign the warrant at their April 7 meeting at 6:30 p.m.

The proposed budget is up about $127,000 over the 2014-15 budget. The current tax rate is $21.10 per $1,000 valuation. Town Manager Kristal Flagg said that rate may increase slightly, particularly because of Regional School Unit 73 costs and Androscoggin County taxes.

She said the municipal budget has been kept flat for about five years, while everything else has gone up.

Voters will also be asked to borrow up to $229,000 for purchases to replace a 1998 plow truck, a 2002 plow truck and a pickup truck with a plow.

Highway Foreman Bill Nichols said his department has not replaced equipment for four years.

“Everything is kind of backed up,” he said.

Although most selectmen would like to establish reserve accounts for major equipment purchases, such plans usually get turned down.

“We look at a big increase all at once without putting money away,” Selectman Mary Young said. “I’d rather swallow the pill over five years than all at once.”

Flagg said the first payment on the loan of $229,000, if approved, will begin in 2016.

The budget includes nearly $13,000 for Fire Department air packs and $28,000 for a new police cruiser. Two of the older cruisers will be replaced with one, Flagg said, leaving the department with three cruisers.

Also, no money was placed in the budget to repair or replace the Livermore Falls Fire Station.

Flagg said the Maine Municipal Bond Bank has approached her about bonding a new fire station. No action has been taken on that proposal, which must be approved by residents.

“Every department is flat this year and we’ve been doing that for a number of years. There’s no place to cut,” Board of Selectmen Chairwoman Louise Chabot said.

A majority of the board declined to include $1,000 for the Downtown Betterment Group which sponsors community events such as the annual Sled-In and History Night.

Bob Berry, president of the group, said the $1,000 contributed brings many more thousands to the town.


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