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Showing posts with label Town of Lisbon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Town of Lisbon. Show all posts

Friday, January 12, 2018

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Lisbon Town Offices Closed - Monday, January 15, 2018

 

In observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the Town Offices, Lisbon Public Library and MTM Center will be closed on Monday, January 15, 2018.  You still will have access to the MTM fitness center by using your membership code key.
All offices will be open regular business hours on Tuesday, January 16, 2018.
SUBMITTED BY:  TOWN OF LISBON

Friday, January 5, 2018

Dept. Operation Hours and Snow Removal Notice

 

All town departments are operating on regular business hours.  If anything changes, we will issue an alert.
Downtown Snow Removal Scheduled for Sunday Night January 7, 2018.
SUBMITTED BY:  TOWN OF LISBON

Beaver Park Trails

 

Beaver Park snowshoe and cross country ski trails have not been groomed.  The park road is packed should you wish to use them.  Parks is hoping to groom trails Monday, January 8, 2018 for your enjoyment.
SUBMITTED BY:  TOWN OF LISBON

Urgent: Downtown Snow Removal Scheduled for Sunday Night January 7, 2018

Downtown Snow Removal Scheduled for Sunday Night January 7, 2018

SUBMITTED BY:  TOWN OF LISBON

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

YOU BE THE JUDGE!!!!!


On December 19, 2017, our loved Town Council performed yet another illegal Executive Session.  This is exactly the same way it was when Councilor LaRochelle was on the Town Council the last time.  At least they waited until the second meeting to start again.  I believe that before you can be a Councilor you must know how to read.  Since the oath of office they take, requires you to obey the laws of the State of Maine; each Councilor should know the law pertaining to Executive Sessions.  Maine Statue 405, Executive Sessions is only three pages long and outlines what can and cannot be discussed behind closed door.
 
Paragraph 6, Permitted deliberation, states “Deliberations on ONLY the following matters may be conducted during an executive session:”   It goes on to outline 8 sub-paragraphs for which an Executive Session is authorized.  Sub-paragraph C. reads “Discussion or consideration of the condition, acquisition or the use of real or personal property permanently attached to real property or interests therein or disposition of publicly held property or economic development ONLY IF PREMATURE DISCLOSURES OF THE INFORMATION WOULD PREJUDICE THE COMPETITIVES OR BARGAINING POSITION OF THE BODY OR AGENCY.”  The last portion of this provision is the most critical because it outlines when this sub-paragraph can be used for an Executive Session.
 
On December 19, 2017, the Town Council when into Executive Session under the above cited sub-paragraph and when they came out Councilor Kolbe read a prepared motion that read: “Move to loan $146,940.00 with a 10-year term at an interest rate of 5% to Jason LaVerdiere and Tyson LaVerdiere doing business as Flux Restaurant as followers:  $100,000.00 from the IRP fund and $46,940.00 from the Commercial Loan Fund.”  This was the only application for the Revolving Loan Fund program so where is the competition.  How is approval of the only application going to change the bargaining position or going to be changed if this information was released?  The loan application does NOT meet the criteria for Executive Session under the provisions of Maine Statue 405.  I support the approval of the loan application BUT not in the manner it was done.
 
This Town Council meeting is only Councilor LaRochelle’s second meeting.  It would appear that the community is in for three more years of back-door dealings and illegal Executive Sessions.
 
Call your Councilors and tell them to stop these illegal Executive Session and start complying with the law by discussing them in Public.
 
Larry Fillmore

Friday, December 22, 2017

URGENT ANNOUCEMENT


This is an editor’s notice: 

According to the Town Manager: 

The Library & Transfer Station will be closed tomorrow due to the ice storm.  They will reopen on Tuesday, December 26th.

Larry Fillmore

Saturday, December 16, 2017

LET THE FUN BEGIN!!!!!!!!!


Tuesday night will begin the downfall of the community, again.  I am surprised it took until the second meeting with Fern LaRochelle to start.  On Tuesday agenda, there is an item under Executive Session, called Acquisition of Real Property or Economy Development.  Executive Session is where Fern LaRochelle does most of his wheeling and dealing because it is in SECRET.  No one can ever know what goes on behind closed doors.
 
Information put out in Executive Session pertaining to real property or anything that pertains to the bid process is restricted to ONLY Councilors.  I call this “insider information” because none of the other individuals that want to bid on the subject matter know what was discussed in Executive Session but Councilors are allowed to bid as private citizens.  Once again, there is no “conflict of interest” but ONLY in Lisbon.
 
No Councilor should be able to take part on anything discussed behind closed doors because it gives them an unfair advantage.  Fern LaRochelle has taken advantage of this in the pass when he purchased town property at a reduced price.  Having insider information provides Councilors with an advantage. 
 
I am shocked that the Chairman of the Town Council and the Town Manager waited until the second meeting to start this trend all over again.
 
Larry Fillmore

 

 

WWW.LISBONME.ORG


If you are wondering what “www.lisbonme.org” is; it is the address for the Lisbon town website.  The purpose of this website is to keep the people informed as to what is going on in Lisbon, Maine.  It should be an attempt to provide transparency for our local government.  However, as Mr. Joe Hill noted in his great article titled “Lisbon Has An Ongoing Problem Notifying Residents” no matter how many times residents complain nothing gets changed.
 
This is a shame because the solution is quite simple.  All scheduled meeting must be posted to the “Event” calendar on the Home page. I am going to provide two solutions to the problem:
 
Option 1:  Make the Councilor, who is responsible for the Board/Committee, responsible for posting the meeting/cancellation to the “Event” calendar.
 
Option 2:  Make the Councilor, who is responsible for the Board/Committee, responsible to notify the Town Manager’s Administrative Assistant to all meetings/cancellations.  This will ensure they are posted to the “Event” calendar on the town website.
 
This simple change will ensure that citizens have one location to be informed about ALL meetings.  This way the people can choose which meetings they want to attend and have an interest in.  However, before the town can implement these changes; they must first post all the Boards/Committees/Sub-Committees on the town website under the section called “Boards/Committees”.  Currently, the website ONLY lists 9 of the 18 Boards/Committees listed under “Council Committee Assignments”.  The Town Manager needs to ensure that all Boards/Committees/Sub-Committees are listed under the section called “Board/Committees”.
 
These simple changes will ensure that the people of Lisbon are kept informed and will show transparency.  By the way, taxpayers are paying tax dollars for the town website so why are we NOT using the site for what it was intended to do.  By selectively posting just what management want the people to see; the town is censoring what the people can and cannot have for information. So why are we wasting tax dollars on a web site that is NOT providing what we need?
 
Call your Councilors and ask them why the town is wasting tax dollars?  Also ask your Councilors; “Who has oversight over the posting of the town website”?
 
Larry Fillmore

 

 

 

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Lisbon Has An Ongoing Problem Notifying Residents.

Last week's article by Larry Fillmore reminded me of a frustrating incident I had last winter.

Last January or February after braving a rather nasty snow/sleet storm  I arrived at Town Hall to find the advertised Council Meeting had been canceled. This cancellation was not noted on the outside electronic board or on the Town Web Site.   

On the return two miles drive back to my home, I wondered if the Town of Lisbon could be held partially liable if someone had a serious accident driving to or from this canceled meeting.  Bartenders can be held liable if they give an inebriated person excessive alcohol that causes an accident. Could Lisbon be held liable if they are the reason an accident victim is driving to or from a canceled meeting.  -- Probably not---

In my humble opinion, Lisbon has a serious ongoing problem keeping residents apprised of  Town Meetings, Cancellations, Informational material for meetings as well as updated budget information.  It would only take a minute to update the Town's Website or send an E-mail to notify residents of any meetings or changes to meetings.

By not keeping the residents notified of ongoing town business the Council is speaking volumes about the way they view residents.

They are silently saying to each and every resident:
  •  We don't respect you enough to keep you informed.
  •  We tell you we want you at meetings but we really can't be bothered to actually do the work to notify you.

How many times since 2010 have you heard someone complain that all the documentation for the Council Meeting isn't available on the Website?  I have heard this complaint dozens of times. Usually, someone will post the information a few days later 
when the Council has already voted on the measure.

If Councilors can't be bothered to keep residents informed why should residents respect and help the Council?  This respect goes both ways.

Respectfully
Joe Hill
 

Monday, December 11, 2017

HE’ssssss BACK!!!!!!!

Well, the people have spoken and re-elected Fern LaRochelle to the Town Council, again.  I am NOT a fan of Fern LaRochelle and this article is my personal opinion.  It was not bad enough that when he was on the Town Council before; there were back door meetings, numerous actions was conducted in Executive Session and Fern conducted secret meetings with the Millers over the Worumbo Mill property.  I believe Fern also took advantage of his position on the Town Council to purchase town owned property at a reduced price.  I call this “insider information” but to everyone else he was legal as a citizen.
 
As you can tell, I believe that Fern is part of the problem and not the solution.  Take the Lisbon Communication Center as a prime example, Fern lobbied hard to keep it in Lisbon instead of closing it and utilizing the Androscoggin County Dispatch at a savings to the taxpayer of roughly $200,000.00.  This was strictly a political decision, instead of a sound logical decision, with the best interest of the community being first.  Currently, the Lisbon Communication Center cost the taxpayers of Lisbon over $300,000.00 a year; money that could be better used to improve the community.  Fern did this as a sub-contractor of the town for wrecker/vehicle recovery service.
 
Why do I bring this out, yet again, it is because the first thing Fern did was appoint himself as the Councilor to the Public Safety Committee. This means he has a say in the Lisbon Communication Center which dispatches wrecker/vehicle recovery service for the town.  I believe this would be concerned a “conflict of interest” anywhere else except Lisbon.
 
Also, it is my opinion the length of the Town Council meetings will increase two fold because Fern likes to hear himself talk.  He is always saying “At the end of the day”.  So for the next three years, I believe that Fern will be wheeling and dealing and costing the town more money than it needs to spend.  In my opinion, Fern LaRochelle is a primary member of the “good old boys network/political machine” of Lisbon.
 
This is my personal opinion but I believe that Fern LaRochelle has to screw his pants on in the morning.
 
Larry Fillmore

 

Friday, November 17, 2017

TOWN COUNCIL MEETING AGENDA FOR NOVEMBER 21, 2017



CITIZENS OF LISBON AND BOWDOIN WAKE UP!!!!!

 
Last Wednesday night, I attended HALF a meeting on the issue of the Lisbon Emergency situation.  However, upon arrival at 06:40 PM, I learned the meeting had already started.  It was on the town website as starting at 0700 PM.  I have no idea what time it really started but I missed a discussion on the Request for Procurement (RFP).  The last meeting was cancelled (without notice to the Public) because they had not received a response to the RFP.  I came to see what was in the RFP’s.  Apparently, I missed that whole discussion.  It would be nice if you could believe the town website.
 
I think I should catch everyone on up on what is going on with Lisbon Emergency.  Lisbon Emergency, Inc. is operating at a loss.  They are asking the taxpayer of Lisbon and Bowdoin to bail them out with additional funds.  Check out the chart below:
 
FY                    TOTAL CHARGES   LISBON SHARE   BOWDOIN SHARE
2018-2019     $162,152.78           $127,884.46        $34,267.92
2019-2020     $187,762.90           $149,172.84        $39,590.06
2020-2021     $251,354.03           $199,245.74        $52,108.29
 
This is to maintain the current level of service to our communities.
 
I have utilized Lisbon Emergency several times this year and the service I have received was outstanding.  The Emergency Medical Technician’s (EMT) were very professional and very efficiency.  There is no question Lisbon Emergency is a valuable asset to our communities.  Without their service, our communities would have to wait for ambulance service (United Ambulance Service) to come from Russell Street in Lewiston.  Utilizing United Ambulance Service would not cost the towns anything but there will certainly be a delay.   CAN WE AFFORD THE DELAY?
 
When I asked if Lisbon Emergency had looked into alternative solutions before these towns bail them out; I was immediately informed by Chairman Ward this is NOT a bailout.  I do not understand why this is not a bailout.  Lisbon Emergency is a private business, providing a service to these towns, and are asking the taxpayer to add additional funds to their revenue to operate.  HOW IS THIS NOT A BAILOUT?
 
This is a real tough situation because if the taxpayers do not come up with the additional funds; Lisbon Emergency will have to shut down and United Ambulance Service will have to provide citizens with emergency medical services.  This is a critical situation that directly affects the lives of every person in both communities.  Bowdoin has a town meeting in March and will vote on it.  However, Lisbon does not have a town meeting to decide these issues;  I believe because everyone in Lisbon is affected by this issue; it should be decided by a vote of the citizens and NOT left up to the Town Council.  This is just too important.
 
Think about where the money is going to come from?  The town of Lisbon is currently wasting over $200,000.00 by keeping the Communication Center open instead of using the Androscoggin County Dispatch center.  This was a political decision instead of a logical one.  CAN WE AFFORD TO SUPPORT BOTH?
 
Larry Fillmore