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Town Administrator Report 2017
This year town staff, the Board of Selectmen, School Board and other various committees have worked diligently together to provide quality services to the towns people of West Bath. Here are a few points of interest from this past year:
Budget: This year the FY2017-2018 budget has brought about a few challenges for the Town. One challenge comes in the form of an increase in the Town’s County Tax bill of $26,438 over last year. The second challenge comes in the form of unanticipated special education costs. Unfortunately, these are not costs that can be predicted and are unavoidable. In an effort to handle the increase in a way that would have the least impact on taxpayers, the Board of Selectmen, Budget Committee and I have worked together to make reductions in the Town’s budget that would not impact Town services. Unfortunately, it is next to impossible for the Town’s Municipal Operating Budget to be reduced enough to make up for the increase in special education costs. Please note, the Board of Selectmen and the Budget Advisory Committee are in agreement with the entire proposed FY 2017-2018 budget.
Sale of Tax Foreclosed Property: Many years ago, the Town foreclosed on 16 Whistlers Cove Road due to property taxes not being paid. This year in an effort to move some of the tax foreclosed property off of the books the Town reached out to a real estate auction company to assist in the sale of 16 Whistlers Cove Road. In working with the auction company the Town was able to sell the property to a West Bath resident for a purchase price of $111,100.
Completion of the Hill Road Project: The Hill Road reconstruction project was a multiyear project to address many of the issues with the road to include drainage problems as well as areas of hazardous conditions for drivers. Through the hard work of the Road Commissioner, Steve Renaud all final aspects of this project were addressed and the project was completed in the fall of 2016.
New Sand/Salt Shed: As approved by the May 2016 Town Meeting the Town will be moving forward with building a new sand/salt building on the Arthur J. Reno Sr Road. This project was put out to bid twice at the conclusion of which the Selectmen awarded the construction project to David Trask of Trask and Son’s Incorporated. Construction will begin in April of 2017 and will conclude in October of 2017.
Town Road and Parking Lot Plowing: The 2016-2017 winter marked the end of the Town’s current plowing contract. Following the Town’s bid process two bid packages were put out to public bid, the first for the plowing of the Town Roads and the second for the plowing of Town Parking Lots. At the conclusion of the bid process the Selectmen awarded the Town Road plowing contract to Goodall Landscaping Incorporated and the Town Parking Lots plowing contract to DTB Snowplowing. Both contracts are a three-year contact ending in 2020.
In closing, if you would like to volunteer to serve on a Town committee please contact me as the Town has many openings on Town Committees. As always, if you have any questions or ideas that you would like to discuss, please feel free to contact me at the West Bath Town Office or by email, firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would simply like to stop in and chat, my door is always open and I would thoroughly enjoy meeting anyone who wishes to drop in at the Town Office.
Adam Garland, West Bath Town Administrator