The Sanford City Council met via Zoom on Tuesday, August 4. The following items were among those presented or discussed:
- City Manager Steven Buck reported that he has been assured by the Bureau of Motor Vehicles that the closure of the Springvale office will not be permanent. An official from the BMV told him they are currently short staffed and have moved some of the Springvale staff to the Kennebunk office, leaving Springvale without enough employees to open safely.
- Mr. Buck and Police Officer Eric Small spoke about the activities of the Homeless Task Force. See separate story.
- The Council voted to ratify a 3-year collective bargaining agreement with the Sanford Firefighters Association Local 1624. The agreement had been previously ratified by the firefighters.
- The Council voted to accept $726,676 in funding from the Maine Department of Health and Human Services under the Keep Maine Healthy program for Covid-19 awareness and expenses. Mr. Buck and Ian Houseal, Sanford’s Director of Community Development, spoke about how the funds will be used. Read the full story. Mr. Houseal also reported that the Surge Team members, funded through the first round of Keep ME Healthy, have been hired. Read that story here.
- An update on the Summer Commons Elder Care facility construction was provided, with several photos of the progress. Summer Commons is being built off June St., and will replace the Newton Center when it opens in the spring of 2021. Construction is reported to be on schedule.
- Mr. Buck reviewed the fiscal year 2020/2021 city budget projection and the Assessor’s report of valuation with the Council. See separate story. The Council voted to set the municipal overlay at $384,714.11, which is the final step in the budget process. The municipal overlay is an account which acts as a safety net in case of an unexpected revenue shortfall. By Maine Law, it may be set at up to 5% of the total budget.
- The Council authorized the City Manager to sign an operating agreement with Screaming Eagle Aviation at the Sanford Airport. Screaming Eagle is seeking a temporary location from which to operate their banner ad towing business, while the runways at the Biddeford Airport are undergoing reconstruction.
- The Council voted to accept and authorize the use of $17,645 of Justice Assistance Grant Funds. Police Chief Thomas Connolly joined the meeting and explained that the funds would be used for overtime pay, safety equipment and flashlights, with most of that earmarked for the Community Policing Enforcement Team.
- The Council voted to extend by 91 days the Emergency Ordinance that allowed flexibility for restaurants with regard to outdoor seating.
Additionally, there were two annual “housekeeping” items that the Council attended to:
- Jamie Cole, Jeannie Wood, Aaron Lederer and Alix Horr were reappointed to positions as Code Enforcement Officers for the city. Cole was reappointed Local Plumbing Inspector with Wood, Lederer and Horr as Alternate Plumbing Inspectors. Wood and Lederer were reappointed as constables to enforce civil violations of the City Code. These appointment expire on June 30, 2021.
- Funds received from the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife from Sanford snowmobile registrations were appropriated for the Southern Maine Sno-Goers Snowmobile Club to buy equipment and maintain trails.
There was no public participation at the meeting.
The next City Council meeting will be held Tuesday, August 18.