PERU — Members of the Select Board and the Finance Committee spent three hours Saturday morning retooling articles defeated in the June 11 referendum.

The changes will be put to a public vote again next month.

Since the referendum, the town now has an additional $212,000 in its surplus.

Selectwoman Carol Roach said a Maine Revenue Services audit found Central Maine Power had not paid its personal property taxes with the town. It was an assessing error and the town now has that money.

Board Chairwoman Raquel Welch led an effort to use $112,000 of that money to assist in a second attempt to buy a truck and a backhoe for the Highway Department.

One article will ask voters to buy a six-wheeler with hydraulics and a plow. The proposal calls for spending up to $160,000 on the equipment, with $54,000 coming from surplus and the balance to be financed for three years.

The other article asks voters to buy backhoe. That proposal calls for spending up to $130,000, with $48,000 to come from surplus and the balance also to be financed over three years.

Both the Select Board and Finance Committee supported the truck purchase, but while the board supported the backhoe purchase, the committee did not.

Road Commissioner Brad Hutchins said the truck that needs replacing is 22 years old. He also said it would cost about $8,500 to make needed repairs to the vehicle, an expense he described as “a real waste of money.”

He said repairs to the backhoe would run about $20,000. Hutchins said this machine is being used “carefully,” but added he has a “problem putting money into a junk machine.”

Welch said if voters turn down the new backhoe purchase, the fallback will be to repair the old one and ask for a new one the next year.

Other articles again headed to voters include:

* General expenses: The Select Board has again recommended $35,800, which is about the same as this year. The Finance Committee voted against, saying there is more money to be saved, such as legal fees.

* Town officers and appointed officials: the Select Board and Finance Committee supported reducing this expense by $3,998, to $40,659.

* Town Office operations: The Select Board and Finance Committee supported reducing this expense by $8,000, to $70,000.

* Garage facility maintenance and operations: The Select Board and Finance Committee supported reducing this expense by $1,000, to $15,000.

* Preservation of town record books: The Select Board and Finance Committee supported reducing this expense by $1,000, to $4,000.

* Oxford County tax: The Select Board and Finance Committee supported adding a notation that there is a statutory requirement this bill be paid.

The board agreed with Roach’s recommendation to vote on these articles when residents also vote again on the Regional School Unit 56 budget Tuesday, July 30, from noon to 7 p.m. at the Town Office.

The tentative schedule date for an informational meeting on the the re-vote of the municipal articles is 6 p.m. Tuesday, July 16 at Dirigo Elementary School in Peru.

Welch said passage of the remaining municipal articles will not increase the town’s property tax rate, but approval of the reduced RSU 56 budget will still mean a $2.50 increase to Peru’s property tax rate.

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