LIVERMORE FALLS — Residents will consider a nearly $7.5 million municipal budget for 2024-25 at the polls April 23.

The polling station will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Fire Station.

There is a new chart of accounts this year, making it difficult to determine the increase or decrease in the budget.

The town got behind in its “yearly audits and received harsh criticisms and stern directives from our auditor” RHR Smith & Co. of Buxton, Town Manager Carrie Castonguay said.

“One of those directives is that we change accounting practices and implement the Model Chart of Accounts for Municipal and County Budgets,” she said. “We began this new chart of accounts with this budget cycle and as a result the town meeting warrants look different.”

This is the first Livermore Falls budget Castonguay has overseen since she became the town manager in August 2023.  She replaced former Town Manager Amanda Allen, who resigned.


The Livermore Falls  2024 Town Report will be available Wednesday at the Town Office, which is open from noon to 6 p.m. that day. There are two audit reports for 2021 and 2022 in it and a copy of the 31 articles on warrant for April 23.

As part of the new accounting system departments were moved into 10 cost centers under a heading versus 22 individual departments as has been past practice, she said.

One example is Public Safety, which includes the departments of police, fire, health officer, hydrants, ambulance service, streetlights and animal control.

Last year, those departments added together was about $1 million. This year it is proposed at $3,232.66 less. However, benefits have been taken out of all the accounts and put into one budget for a proposed total of $873,600.

Under the heading of Public Works are the accounts for public works, Transfer Station, building and grounds. The budget for that is proposed at $757,088 for 2024-25. Last year it was $863,840 when the individual accounts were added together.

The General Government budget is proposed at $425,901 compared to $475,839 last year.


There is a proposed $640,111 in the budget for sewer. This is the first year that residents will consider a sewer budget. Sewer users pay for all of the expenses related to the Sewer Department and Wastewater Treatment Plant. This includes the proposed debt service of $323,396, which shows that $34,757 will be paid through general taxation and $288,821 will be paid by Livermore Falls and Jay sewer users. The bulk of it is for the Wastewater Treatment Plant upgrade.

There is anticipated $3 million in revenues voters will consider for the first time to offset the whole budget, including sewer user fees where appropriate. It has never been voted on by residents.

The major changes of note, Castonguay said, are wage adjustments made by selectmen to recruit and retain employees.

“This is the year of sticker shock because the difference in wages previously taken from contingency and (American Rescue Plan Act) funds is now part of the regular budget,” she said. “This is the first year that the full amount is budgeted as part of each cost center. Other increases are inflation-related due to the cost of materials, supplies and contractual increases.”

Among those increases are NorthStar EMS ambulance service up 17.89% from last year; hydrant rental increase of 2.26%; Regional School Unit 73 appropriation up 8.7%; Androscoggin County Tax and the Public Safety Answering Point (dispatch) up 2.1%; and agency requests up 13%.

Other accounts have also been consolidated, including the Treat Memorial Library, community/parks, summer recreation and the town clock all now under the heading of Culture and Recreation.

Capital projects is proposed at $385,000. It includes $130,000 for paving, $80,000 for a property revaluation, $75,000 for a Fire Department reserve account, and $100,000 for the Public Works Department to put away money for a new dump truck to replace an aging one.

Article 22 on the warrant is for funding the East Livermore village substation. When residents voted in 2020 to find land and build a one-bay substation, it didn’t include a financial statement required by law, Castonguay said. If approved, this article will allow the town to borrow up $420,000 for construction of the building. The total estimated cost over 20 years, with interest, is $595,246.48.

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