INDUSTRY — Voters approved a truck and a 2.3 percent budget increase Saturday afternoon at the Industry Town Meeting.
About 40 voters approved the $399,570 budget as proposed by the selectmen, up $8,842 from the year before.
First Selectman Lee Ireland said the board won’t know how much the property tax rate of $14.90 per $1,000 of valuation will increase until the school board and the county finalize their budgets. Last year, 58 percent of Industry property taxes, or $650,608, went to the school district; and 7 percent, or $80,342, went to county taxes.
Mark Prentiss, chairman of the Mt. Blue School Board, told Industry residents that enrollment has increased, which increased the school’s revenue from the state; but the budget probably will need to be larger this year in order to get a full funding match from the state.
Ireland said the town is still searching for a contractor to replace the Sandy River Recycling Association.
The association is set to dissolve July 1. Residents approved spending $1,269, the cost of recycling for six months.
Ireland said he is doing research to learn whether Industry can find a deal similar to those of other towns that were able to continue recycling for no additional cost with a contractor that paid for the service by reselling recyclables. If not, the selectmen will need to hold a special town meeting halfway through the year to approve recycling funds for rest of the year.
A new building-setback ordinance that updates the existing 40-year-old setback ordinance was approved at the meeting.
The new ordinance clarifies the law, reduces from 60 feet to 50 the distance new buildings have to be set back from a road and adds an appeals process.
Planning Board member Dan Maxham said the new ordinance is in line with modern standards other communities use.
Residents gave selectmen approval to shop for a new plow truck that selectmen estimate will cost around $140,000. The board plans to shop for a 2013 or newer truck and use $50,000 from the undesignated fund balance as the down payment.
The plow truck the town has been using is 15 years old and out of service because it needs repairs. Ireland said the selectmen hope to sell the truck, possibly to a logger, but they don’t expect to make much from the resale.
Kaitlin Schroeder — firstname.lastname@example.org