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Minutes of Town Board Meetings

Minutes of November 14, 2006

November 15th, 2006

Carroll Budget Committee
Minutes of November 14, 2006

Members present: Linda Dowling, Tom Gately, Pam Walsh, Carmine Fabrizio, Karen Moran, Bonnie Moroney. Excused: Ken Mills

Others present: Bill Dowling, Claire Gritzer, Ed Daniels, Jeff Duncan

Chair called the meeting to order at 7:05

Tom motioned to accept the minutes of 11/9 as written, Carmine seconded, all in favor.

There was no incoming or outgoing correspondence to discuss.

Karen Carew was scheduled to discuss the accounting status and miscellaneous information, wrote incorrect date on calendar. Will come to meeting 11/21/06.

Budgets for the Health Officer and the Conservation Commission will be reviewed 11/21/06

Claire had questions about the Library budget that was reviewed 11/9. After discussion, the information reviewed 11/9 was agreed as accurate.

Karen will contact Becki Pederson via email regarding the Cemeteries budget.

Jeff and Ed then addressed the Fire Department Budget. Due to the volume of accounts, it was agreed to review account changes first.

Jeff stated the salaries reflect a 3% increase. Bonnie said the Select board had calculated 5% for all. To be adjusted.

Linda asked for clarification of “volunteer” vs. paid. Calls to which members respond are paid but training and certification time are not paid, thus volunteered.

Jeff suggested that as Dale Shakespeare participates in the new contract with Time/Warner Cable, he be encouraged to negotiate for free internet service to all town departments.

Software support is increased as state regulated updates for ImageTrend and FirePoint.
Chair questioned the cable suggestion and discussion ensued. Adelphia had not offered free service to all departments. There are 3 departments which do currently have free internet-Selectmen’s Office, Town Clerk’s office, and the Library. Linda asked if the current contract is available and was told it is in the town office.

Account -402, Medical Supplies are regulated by the state as we are ALS-Advanced Life Support, thus required to have specific items and have the ambulance licensed as such.
Account -500, Dispatching is up as the Police will be dispatched through the Fire Department contract with Twin State. The Police department will reimburse the Fire for their portion of the expense, estimated at about $1,000. Karen asked if that expense for the police had been included in the police budget and it does not appear to have been.

Account -700 fuel-despite gasoline being somewhat less expensive now than at the beginning of the year, diesel has increased. 5 of the 6 pieces of apparatus are diesel.
Tom asked if the fuel is through the state pumps and Jeff said yes.

Account 710-Protective clothing-Jeff indicated the cost to outfit one firefighter is approximately $3,500. Gear is anticipated to last 15 years. Karen asked how many members the department has: 26 firefighters, 14 Emergency Medical (some overlap).

Training costs were discussed-EMS must recertify every 2 years, approximately $750 per person. Cost is class only, as time spent to train is voluntary.

Account 802-$1,000 computer disk required by the national Fire Protection Agency

Regarding Revenues and Grants:

Ambulance bills Coos County $1,500 per year to cover areas within town.
Ambulance Special Revenue account and activity noted on spreadsheet. Jeff indicated sheet agrees with bank statement monthly. Karen asked to what general ledger revenue account the funds post, unsure, but account 3401=$1,415 and 3409=$47,162.

Certificate of Occupancy fees received in the amount of $25 should be split $10 for Fire and $15 for Building Inspector. Jeff believes it is all posting to the Building Inspection-again, revenue account?

Linda asked for description of who does what for the certificate of occupancy. Jeff reviews home for life and fire safety, Stan reviews whole house for code compliance.

Regarding the ambulance revenue, 80% of money posts to special revenue account, 20% reverts to general fund. Comstar is the billing service used. The 7% fee they charge is deducted from the amount collected.

Linda stated that she presumed the approval of the new ambulance, garage addition, etc. last year was to generate income such as hospital to hospital transfers. Karen disagreed.
There was much discussion regarding the risk of sending emergency vehicles and workers outside of the municipality as we are still primarily a volunteer department.

Ed indicated that the town is being proactive using a billing service, thus staying ahead of the curve. Many other towns are reviewing the model here.

Karen then asked what the anticipated revenue would be for 2007. Jeff noted a conservative estimate would be $80,000.
Grants received in 2006 were $38,000 to offset the cost of $42,396 for the exhaust system in the fire station; $8,500 grant to offset the cost of $17,151 for the permanent generator behind the station (funded with the grant and donations); and $844 grant for forestry gear, chainsaws, etc. Received physical Motorola radios valued at approximately $1,900 each for 25 radios=$47,500. Ed indicated they have a 5 year warranty and discussed the inter-operability of the radios.

Warrant articles were reviewed. One for replacement of pick-up truck saves wear and tear on engine or ambulance when need to tow forestry gear and/or snowmobile rescue sled.

Discussion about changing the name of the special revenue fund. Need 2/3 majority.

Lengthy discussion about need for second fire-fighter full-time, wording of warrant, salary, benefits, etc. Linda suggested leaving current revenue fund as is and setting up a new one only for the salary of the fire fighter, Karen suggested that is unnecessary and burdensome. Further discussion took place regarding intent of the warrant. Karen asked what would happen if one passed without the other. Name change would be fine, fire fighter position contingent on name change passage. The salary of the second position would always be funded from the ambulance billings posting to the special revenue fund, not taxpayer dollars.

Linda would like to study the article. All agreed that as a petition article, it has to go to the Deliberative Session in February 2007 as written, but can be changed at that time.

Discussion turned to the 20 year turn-around cycle for a new engine. Currently have 1987 that should be replaced. Karen asked about the capital reserve fund, funds are too low as the selectmen over the years have been hesitant to ask for more than $10,000 per year. Newer engine will approximate $250,000-$350,000. Not enough in the capital reserve fund to put warrant for new engine.

Karen asked about the grant money, to what account it posts, was told a grant revenue account on the general ledger was established to accept and expend the grant.

Additional information in the package to the Budget Committee included a run analysis, calls per month summary, call types, etc. Tom asked about false alarms, Jeff said they are about ½ of what they were in prior years. Tom asked about charging for false alarms. Jeff said he had given a suggestion to the selectmen, who asked for legal advice.

Pam excused herself from the meeting at 8:35.

Property Inspections portion of the town budget were scheduled for tonight, but Stan Borkowski did not come to the meeting.

With no other business, Linda motioned to adjourn, Carmine seconded.

Next meeting will be held Tuesday November 21, 2006 at 7pm at the town hall.

Chair closed the meeting at 8:40.

Respectfully submitted,
Karen Moran, Secretary