Otisfield Selectman Lenny Adler, standing, addresses residents about the town meeting warrant at Thursday evening’s public hearing at the Otisfield Community Hall.

OTISFIELD — Residents voted Thursday to amend an article on the town meeting warrant to appropriate money for an electronic sign outside the Town Office.

Instead of appropriating $22,000 from the timber reserve account, the article will read “no more than $25,000.”

The vote followed a public hearing by selectmen.

One resident asked selectmen what prompted the town to look into an electronic messaging board.

Selectman Rick Micklon said the town was thinking about the “people who have to change the signs. They have to take the letters out of the box, pull all the letters off of the sign, formulate your message, go inside and put all the letters back in the box alphabetically,” Micklon said. “They do that year-round.”

“How many times?” the resident asked.

“Dozens and dozens,” Micklon said. “Sometimes, they do it more than once a week.”

Micklon said the town did not put the project out to bid because Neokraft Signs Inc. of Lewiston was the “sole provider of the ICE sign,” an electronic sign that offers white font on a black background, or black font on a white background.

“One of the things that I think we’ve all agreed on over the years is that we haven’t wanted an electronic sign because of the colors, the flashing lights, the messages that change too fast,” Micklon said. “The reason we didn’t look at other places is because Neokraft is the sole provider of this sign that is just black and white LED lighting.”

Residents also had a chance to discuss an article that asks residents if they wish to appropriate $40,000 from the town’s timber reserve account to renovate the town clerk’s space.

Micklon said the $40,000 would cover design work, lowering the ceilings, installing new lighting, upgrading the electrical, installing a new counter, improving the storage, upgrading the flooring, and painting.

The timber reserve account has $208,000, and Micklon said that in the near future the board will invite the town’s forester to look at the town timber lots to see if there is anything new to cut, which would add to the bottom line.

Micklon added that the renovations would benefit from an Efficiency Maine program that Otisfield is participating in that offers 80 percent rebates on the installation of energy-savings LED fixtures.

Administrative Assistant Anne Pastore said Field Electric installed LED lights in the Town Office conference room, and it is using one-seventh of the electricity.

The annual town meeting Saturday, June 24, at the Community Hall.

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