WATERVILLE — The city will change the way it appoints people to serve on boards and committees to make the process more efficient.

Currently, terms for seats on committees, boards and commissions expire at different times throughout the year and people are appointed to fill the vacancies when they occur.

City councilors this week voted to change the city’s administrative ordinance to say that all terms for those boards will expire at the same time, in December.

The change will take place next year, according to City Clerk Patti Dubois.

Members of the City Council and Board of Education are elected, so the change will not apply to those panels.

Dubois said the change will also cast a wider net so more people would apply for vacancies.

The change was prompted by the city’s Charter Commission, which suggested the ordinance amendment, but did not make a formal recommendation.

In other matters Tuesday, councilors heard from Ward 6 resident Raya Kouletsis, who said she was concerned about safety conditions at Sterling Street Park, near her home.

She said there is no wheelchair or stroller access to the park, the slide is in decay and a pool of water at the end of the slide is dangerous for her toddler and other children.

Councilor Eliza Mathias, D-Ward 6, said she met with Kouletsis and agrees the slide is dangerous and poses a liability for the city.

Parks and Recreation Director Matt Skehan said the park is in horrible shape, and other city parks also need improvements.

Mayor Karen Heck asked if any Waterville Rotary Club members were in the audience. She asked City Manager Michael Roy, who is a Rotarian, if he would approach the club to see if it might be willing to help fund park improvements. Roy said he would.

In other matters, councilors  heard a presentation from Charter Commission co-chairman Ed Lachowicz. A public hearing on the proposed charter changes will be at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the council chambers. The council Tuesday also voted to:

• Support New England Steam Corp.’s efforts to investigate options for the restoration and protection of the city-owned Old 470 steam engine.

• Advance Waterville Opera House $27,166 to help with final costs of the facility’s renovation, with the money to be paid back as the Opera House receives committed pledges.

• Sell 16 Veteran Court, which was acquired through tax foreclosure.

• Issue a utility location permit for Summit Natural Gas of Maine Inc.

• Give $5,000 from the downtown tax increment financing fund to Common Street Arts.

• Accept $25,000 from Colby College and credit it to expenses incurred by snow making improvements at Quarry Road Recreation Area.

• Award a $37,800 contract to Masonry Unlimited for stone work at Pine Grove Cemetery chapel; award a $10,000 bid to Hotham Concrete for installation of concrete walls around the chapel foundation; and maintain a $22,000 contingency fund for chapel repair.

Amy Calder — 861-9247
[email protected]

 

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