CHELSEA — Selectmen at tonight’s meeting will discuss a proposal for the town’s first-ever professional revaluation of property values.

Town Manager Scott Tilton said selectmen need to approve a draft before the request for proposals can be put out to bid for revaluation companies. The meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at the Chelsea Elementary School.

Tilton expects to get revaluation prices back in February so town officials can budget money to pay for it. New property values would likely take effect in April 2013, he said.

The request for a revaluation comes in response to public concerns. Residents who asked for property tax abatements in 2010 have said that the town’s assessing process is complex and difficult to follow. The town needs to pay an independent appraiser for a townwide revaluation and establish a board of assessors to review abatements, those residents have said.

Voters in June established a Board of Assessment Review to review property tax abatements.

Residents approved $50,000 two years ago as a first installment to pay for a townwide revaluation and they voted for another $21,400 last year.

Tilton said the town’s auditor, R.H. Smith & Company, will be at the selectmen’s meeting to answer questions.

Selectmen also will discuss an investment policy for the town that the auditor recommended.

“I presented the board with a sample of a policy at their last meeting and they want to look it over,” he said. “It’s more or less an auditing recommendation, something a town should have to guide the treasurer so they don’t make any risky investment.”

In other business, the board will consider approval of a timeline to develop a town charter. Tilton said nomination papers will be made available for the town’s Charter Commission.

“We need to do that through a formal election process so papers have to be taken out at some point,” he said. “The timeline will spell that process out. The election will be in March.”

Tilton said he has been trying to figure out if the town should look into Kennebec Valley Community Action Program managing the town’s heating assistance program. He said the town doesn’t have any guidelines in place for managing the program.

“We were hoping to turn it over to the KVCAP, but it looks like we may need town meeting approval to do that,” he said. “So I need to see if they want me to try and administer it or wait until the next town meeting to have KVCAP administer it. If I administer it, they will have to adopt the policy I recommended to give me guidance.”

Mechele Cooper — 621-5663

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