FARMINGTON — Franklin County commissioners voted Tuesday to approve a proposed $1.16 million budget for the unorganized territory for 2019-20, County Clerk Julie Magoon said.

The action followed a public hearing on the proposal, which is $33,152 more than the current budget. The majority of the increase is a result of increases in snow-removal contracts, she said.

The proposed budget now will be sent to the state unorganized fiscal administrator for review. It will then go to the Legislature for consideration of approval.

After factoring in revenue, the tax assessment would be $976,795, according to Magoon’s information.

If the spending package receives legislative approval, the budget would go into effect July 1, 2019.

In other business, commissioners voted 2-1 to take no action on a request to use $40,000 from the county’s tax-increment financing funds for economic development, but to leave the matter on the table, county Financial Manager Vickie Braley said.

Charlie Woodworth, executive director of Greater Franklin Development Corp., went to municipalities in the county asking for a vote of confidence to gain support for the TIF funding request.

Woodworth told Jay selectmen in September the TIF funds would match the $45,000 the group had raised this year. The majority of the Jay board voted in favor of writing a letter to commissioners to support the funding request.

Commissioners Terry Brann, of Wilton, and Chairman Charles Webster, of Farmington, approved taking no action; while Commissioner Clyde Barker, of Strong, opposed the idea, Magoon said.

Two other motions — one to fund the full amount and one to fund $20,000 from the TIF — were made but died for lack of seconds, Braley said.

Commissioners want to see Woodworth involved in creating jobs and bringing in new business, Magoon said.

The county previously had provided the council $60,000, with $30,000 coming from the county budget and $30,000 from the Kibby wind project. The TIF targets economic development in the unorganized territory. Over the years, the county decreased funding. There was no funding for the council in the county’s regular budget this year, but there is money in the TIF.


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