Paris voters to determine budget, three ordinances at Town Meeting

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Jun. 17—PARIS — Residents will gather Tuesday for the annual Town Meeting to consider a $5 million municipal budget and three ordinances.

The meeting is at the Paris Fire Station at 137 Western Ave., starting at 6 p.m.

The overall town budget is increasing by $168,000, Town Manager Dawn Noyes said at last month's public hearing. While rising energy costs are affecting everything from heating, fuel and road maintenance, there is some good news: the school budget is lower due to an unexpected surplus and the town expects a significant increase in state revenue sharing.

Town officials have proposed using $2,637,136 in anticipated general revenue, a 500,000 increase from last year, to limit the tax rate increase. Noyes anticipates a mill increase of approximately 40 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value.

The largest increase in the municipal budget is capital expenditures, which is up by nearly $400,000. Driving that increase is the need for a new plow truck and a $220,000 increase in road reconstruction account.

Voters will also decide on a new town ordinance and whether to amend two others.

The new ordinance deals with cost recovery for the fire department. The new program would bill the insurance companies for charges related to the actual costs by the fire department for personnel and equipment used during an incident. The individual would never be billed, just the person's insurance company. The company providing the service would collect 20% of the funds, with the town keeping the rest to lower the burden on taxpayers. For example, the use of a tanker truck will cost $120 per hour with a two-hour minimum charge.

The amended ordinances deal with property maintenance and building codes. The major change in the property maintenance ordinance is a clearer definition of the word nuisance.