Friday, September 18, 2020

Budget Subcommittee Meeting Recap - Sep 16, 2020

  • Current local receipts coming in per FY 2021 budget, that is good. Will look to another meeting in October to see if anything is happening with the Federal and/or State funding before making a decision in November.
  • Town Administrator Jamie Hellen explained the accounting for the CARES Act funding, how it is being allocated (review the details in the memo linked as part of the meeting agenda)
  • This subcommittee would benefit from having someone from the School District participate to help answer the school side questions when they arise.
  • Buildings getting UV filter upgrades/additions to their ventilation systems. Some will be easier (i.e. less expensive) than other older buildings (which will cost more). Specific building breakout to be gathered as they go with hope to get all work done by end of Dec 2020.

As with most meetings in this pandemic period, I took my notes via Twitter during the meeting reporting in real-time via the virtual session.
The Twitter hashtag can be found online #bsc0916

  • Real time reporting underway for Budget Subcommittee meeting #bsc0916
  • Initial update from Town Administrator Jamie Hellen on budget, agenda doc for tonight can be found here #bsc0916 on target for meeting the FY21 budget with local receipts
  • Meeting via Zoom but also via Verizon and Comcast as well as live stream via webpage #bsc0916
  • Building a/c units being updated with UV all buildings should be done before end of this year 2020. Using CARES act funds for this and other COVID-19 related expenses #bsc0916 all PPE covered this far, what happens in Jan 2021 is open at this point
  • Look at memo, FinCom meeting coming Oct 8?, chromebooks purchased with CARES act. Look for pages 8-9 with the recap Jamie provides #bsc0916
  • Businesses with five or fewer employees eligible for grants, info on town page. Q from Pellegri on why the need for the chromebooks. Q on receipt of chromebooks? Not arrived yet, order in early. #bsc0916 current ETA possible in November to be confirmed.
  • Would benefit from participation of SchComm member or Central Office to answer chromebooks question. Per my info; middle through FHS were 1-1 with systems. Middle schools had been kept in the building, FHS took them home. K-5 had units in school not 1-1 #bsc0916
  • The 4,000 purchased were to bring elementary students to 1-1 ratio for remote learning #bsc0916 Q on local receipts, so far so good. Cases are the highest since Memorial Day. More at Council meeting Mercer adds to chromebooks story with background from FHS project start
  • Q on PPE supply and split of #s from the UV costs. It is a fluid situation, approx 40k for municipal bldg for UV, still getting estimates and start making orders to confirm pricing, so bunched together for now, will be split later. Library will be low cost, FHS also #bsc0916
  • Older buildings like Parmenter, Museum, etc. They will cost more and exactly how much remains to be seen #bsc0916 folks will need to know each building cost. CARES act may not cover it all, may need free cash to do so. Q on what about families without internet
  • Jamie doesn't have answer but will get one. Jones present but can't speak as only 4 Councilors can in a subcommittee meeting #bsc0916 33 businesses have applied for the micro loans. Kelly thinks excise tax will come in ahead as dealers don't have used cars available
  • We can't forget the business with more than five employees and yet aren't 'big' business. The food pantry line is not what you would think, the meals tax needs to be watched. #bsc0915 16 cases as of yesterday Motion to adjourn


Additional photos from the meeting can be found in this album
Town Adminisatrator Jamie Hellen explaining at the Budget Subcommittee meeting
Town Adminisatrator Jamie Hellen explaining at the Budget Subcommittee meeting

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