Rangeley Selectmen were presented with the first draft of the 2021-2022 fiscal year budget at their February 1st meeting.  They have scheduled a February 11, 2021 meeting with the Budget Committee to kick off the review process.  The next six weeks will require a lot of number crunching and discussion to balance the cost of services with the amount of money needed to be raised through property taxes.

The Selectmen were also presented with a grant application from the Fire Chief for a new $700,000.00 fire truck.  Rangeley’s recently adopted grant policy requires all grant applications with a substantial Town match be approved by the Selectmen prior to submittal.  The Town’s 5% match would be $35,000.00 if a grant was awarded to Rangeley.  Permission to apply for the grant was approved.
The Town Manager and Selectmen are working to create a new Fire Chief job description.  The previous Fire Chief was also the part time Town Manager and was overseen by the Selectmen.  The new job description will require the Fire Chief to report to the Town Manager.  Other changes were suggested to the draft job description and will be reviewed by the Selectmen at their next meeting.
The Town of Rangeley received a request from the Town of Pittsfield for an intertown-airport loan for improvements to their airport.  The Stephen Bean Municipal Airport receives $150,000.00 annually for improvement projects from the Federal Aviation Authority(FAA).  The FAA holds this money until it is needed for an airport project and the account currently has $402,620.00 in it.  There are no improvement projects scheduled for the Stephen Bean Municipal Airport until 2024.  Rangeley borrowed funds from the Town of Wiscassett to use on Rangeley’s last airport apron project and will repay Wiscassett $56,100.00 next year from the FAA account.  The Selectmen voted to have Bill Gerrish from Stantec, Rangeley’s Airport Consultant, work with the Town Manager to provide an intertown-airport loan up to $300,000.00 to the Town of Pittsfield.
A draft TIF (Tax Increment Financing) Policy prepared by Darryl Sterling, the Town’s Economic Development Consultant, was presented to the Selectmen for their review.  This policy is needed to supplement the administering of the TIF Development Program.  The policy covers the purpose, basic provisions, guidelines and operating procedures.  This policy is light on details about the process available to voters to provide input on the amount of revenue deposited in the TIF account.  The tax revenue in the TIF account is not available to reduce general property taxes.  The vote on the TIF District and Development Program will be at a SpecialTown Meeting on March 9, 2021.  Absentee ballots for the vote will be available starting February 9, 2021.
The Board of Selectmen approved and agreed to sign an updated letter to State Senator Russell Black supporting an increase in the number of Franklin County Commissioners from three to five.
The Town Office would like to hear from any residents interested in assisting with the ten year update to the Rangeley Comprehensive Plan.
All municipal meetings will be held via Zoom until further notice.  The meeting schedule and Zoom ID numbers will be available on the website, townofrangeley.com under Calendar.  The next Board of Selectmen’s meeting will be on Tuesday, February 16, 2021.

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