REGION — On Tuesday, Sept. 22, Carrabassett Valley and Weld were named by the Maine Municipal Association as winners in the annual reports contest.

According to the release, MMA’s Annual Report Competition, which has been held for more than 50 years, recognizes municipalities for producing reports for their citizens that have excellent content, are well organized and visually appealing. More than 140 municipalities entered reports this year.

Judges for MMA rate the reports in five population categories: 5,000 and over; 2,500 to 4,999; 1,000 to 2,499; 500 to 999; and, under 500. Awards are named Supreme (first place), Superior (second place) and Excellence (third place) in each category.

Carrabassett Valley was named Superior in the 500 to 999 category while Weld earned Excellence in under 500.

Tuesday during a phone call, Carrabassett Valley’s Town Clerk Wendy Russell said Town Manager Dave Cota takes care of the annual report.

“I will have been here 14 years next month, we’ve done it since I’ve been here,” Russell said about the annual report competition.

“We’re very appreciative of the award,” Cota said Wednesday in a phone interview. “We work hard every year to put together the report.

“I’m old school. Town reports were a big deal, come March everyone wanted a copy, wanted to see who had paid their taxes. There’s less of that now with the digital era.”

Fewer town reports are printed these days, they’re not so important, Cota said.

“The award and our report are something that we’re proud of,” he said.

In Weld, Town Clerk Carol Cochran said Tuesday by phone a copy of the annual report is sent to MMA annually but she wasn’t sure if every town does so. Weld didn’t officially enter the contest, she added.

“We get the cover for the report, do the whole thing here, print it ourselves,” Cochran, who has been town clerk since 1978, said.

Treasurer Colleen Stewart also helps with the report, she said.

“We changed the format of the annual report years ago,” Selectman Chairman Tom Skolfield said Tuesday by phone. He also represents House District 112 in the Maine Legislature. “I was attending a lot of town meetings, stole a lot of ideas from their reports. We have a pretty nice report now, it’s easy to understand.”

Changes include using a different color to make it easier to find warrant articles in the report, including information on anyone who does anything in the town and adding the mechanics of town meetings provided by MMA, Skolfield said.

“Over the last 8 or 9 years, we’ve worked to improve the functionality of the town report,” he said. “It’s nice that MMA recognizes that.”




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