FARMINGTON — The Franklin County Budget Advisory Committee failed Wednesday night to get enough votes to override the vote of commissioners to restore their salary to $12,000 each.

The committee voted 5-4 against the motion to support the commissioners’ decision and a total commission department budget of $164,471.

The statute requires a two-thirds vote, or six of nine members of the committee, to override commissioners’ decisions.

The budget committee — three selectmen elected from each of the three commission districts — voted July 8 to set the commissioners’ annual salary at $10,000 each.

On Tuesday, commissioners voted to restore their salary to $12,000.

Voting against the motion were committee members Gary McGrane of Jay, Morgan Dunham of Kingfield, Bob Luce of Carrabassett Valley, Tiffany Maiuri of Wilton and Ray Gaudette of Phillips. Voting in favor were Judy Diaz of Jay, Joshua Bell of Farmington, Tiffany Estabrook of Chesterville and Travis Pond of New Sharon.

Prior to the vote, there was discussion that pay for commissioners varies across the 16 counties in the state. There are only two counties that have a county clerk while the others have either a manager or an administrator to oversee the day-to-day business. Some commissioners receive health benefits, cost-of-living increases and longevity increases. Others, such as Franklin County, receive a stipend but no benefits or annual increases.

The overall budget stands at $6.8 million for 2020-21, which is about $76,000 more than last year.


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