Quarterly Newsletter

 

TOWN OF BELGRADE SUMMER NEWSLETTER

Belgrade Town Office: 495-2258

Center for All Seasons: 495-3481

Belgrade Library: 495-3508

Belgrade Transfer Station: 495-3326

Website: www.townofbelgrade.com                                       June 2014

Summer is here!

Notes from the Town Manager:

I wish to welcome back all of our residents that go south for the winter and all of our summer people also; you missed a very long and cold winter.

 

A little update on what is going on for this summer:

Last year we started an aggressive brush cut back program on our roadways and will continue that effort this year.  We will be paving the Loon Cove Drive roadway and the Chandler Road in their entirety including new drainage systems and culverts. We are doing some mitigation work on several roadways including some crack sealing and maintenance coats in hopes of gaining a few more years of use before having to repave those roads.

Within the next few weeks we will install the rest of our new signage on the roadways into Belgrade and a new sign at the Center for All Season which will have bill-boards on both sides and that sign will be lit. 

Maine Department of Transportation (ME-DOT) has placed the rebuilt of RT # 27 through the Village on their list for funding for the 2016 Candler year. Once there is funding for the project by the State then Belgrade has to match funding for several new parking locations and for setting back the sidewalks in order to create wider and legal parking zones throughout the Village area. Any matching funds will have to be approved by a Town Meeting vote. We already have close to $40,000 in a capital Sidewalk Reserve fund that we can draw from. The Select Board approved the establishment of a Committee whose directive is to look at ways to make the Village area keep its charm and historical look while helping to draw in visitors. The idea is to creating a theme of some kind; so, the Committee is looking into lighting options, decoration themes, a parking lot, and even to build a gazebo.

One last thing on road reconstruction; ME-DOT is suppose to rebuild  RT #8 from the intersection of RT # 27 to the intersection of RT # 8 next year. ME-DOT has already stated cutting down trees in order to widen that roadway as part of their reconstruction project.

 

Notes from the Town Clerk:

Cheryl Cook retired on May 21st.  She served the Town of Belgrade since 2004 as Town Clerk, Tax Collector, Registrar of Voters, and Deputy General Assistance Director; as well as other positions. I know that replacing Cheryl is not going to be easy.  She brought dedication, friendliness, and a thorough understanding of the position.

 

I have been appointed Town Clerk, Registrar of Voters, Office Manager, and Informational Officer.  I have been, and will remain Treasurer, for the Town of Belgrade, since 2012. I bring an extensive 20 year history in municipal government to the positions.  I have been all of the positions and more for different towns. I want the town office to be a friendly and convenient place for all of the Town of Belgrade residents.  

I believe in an “open door” atmosphere.  If I/we can answer any questions, or address any issues please contact us.

Barbara Geaghan, Town Clerk

 

Seasonal Residents Meeting:

As seasonal residents, many of you own property in Belgrade and enjoy the town during much of the summer. You pay property taxes which helps to support our schools, roads, and local governmental programs, but you have no say in how your tax dollars are used. The Board of Selectpersons offer you, as seasonal residents, friends and neighbors, an opportunity to meet with representatives of our local government to discuss concerns or issues that you may have. Therefore, we invite all seasonal residents to join us at the Center for All Seasons on Wednesday,

August 6, 2014 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.  This information will be posted around Town prior to the actual meeting. We hope to see you there.

 

Fire & Rescue Department News:

Events: 

* July 27th – Belgrade Fire & Rescue 8th Annual Auto Show (Please see the attached flyer for details)

*August 2nd -   Bean Hole Bean Supper at the Center for all Seasons from 5pm to 7pm.

 

Burn Permits: The town is now participating in on line Burn Permits.  The permit may be obtained by visiting the site: http://www.burningpermit.com/home or under the fire department on the town website at www.townofbelgrade.com .

NOTE: The permits are free; you must print the permit and sign the permit to validate it.  If you are not able to access the site, it is a “no burn day”.  A burn permit may be obtained by contacting one of the local fire wardens; Chief McKenzie, Mark Day, Eddie Ketch, Bruce Plourd, Bruce Galouch or Scott Damren.

 

Belgrade Recreation Department

1 Center Drive

Belgrade, Maine  04917

207-495-3481

communitycenter@townofbelgrade.com

 

We had a great spring at the Rec. Department, but it is wonderful to finally welcome the warm temperatures of June.  Despite the chilly weather, families were able to enjoy the Annual Easter Egg Hunt. The children loved visiting with Easter Bunny and searching for the 1500 eggs that were hidden!  Special thank you to Tim Horton’s and Cold Stone Creamery of Waterville for providing each child with a free ice cream coupon and to Shaw’s and Hannaford of Waterville and the Board of Parks and Rec for donating juice, muffins and fruit for everyone to enjoy that morning.

 

May 2nd, we hosted our 2nd Mom & Son Super Hero Bash and it was a Blast!!  Dynamic Duos, Fantastic Heroes and Trusty Sidekicks were all here that night in costume.  G-Force Laser Tag returned to add to the excitement of the evening. It is fabulous to see moms and their sons having such a good time playing together. A big Thank You to our generous sponsors - Hammond Lumber Company, Kennebec Savings Bank and Dockside Wellness Center, as well as the staff and volunteers that made sure everything ran smoothly.

 

We are looking forward to a busy summer and will be hosting several family community events.  Join us at the Center for All Seasons for the 4th of July Ice Cream Social from 1:30 – 2:30 sponsored by Gifford’s Ice Cream and then down in the Village for the Frog Jumping Contest after the parade. At the Center on July 8th, you will want to grab your Blue Shirts and get ready to sing and dance because Mr. Harley is going to be back in town!!!  That's right; Mr. Harley and the Strollers will be kicking off our New Playground Fundraiser! Tuesday, July 8th at 6pm, tickets are $5.00 in advance and $7.00 the day of the show. Saturday, August 2nd, the Belgrade Fire & Rescue’s Annual Beanhole Supper will be held at the Center, followed by Belgrade’s Lakeside Artisan Show Sunday, August 3rd from 9-4.  It will be a busy weekend at the Center!  There are also several concerts to benefit local non-profits at the Center, as well as other events in the works.

 

Summer Camps on Great Pond begin June 23rd! Children entering kindergarten through 6th grade will have a blast at Camp Golden Pond.  Kids will get to be kids; playing outside, swimming, learning new games and going on fantastic field trips!!  Older campers in grades 6th – 9th can join us at Camp Loon where their days start on the lake in kayaks and canoes. This camp is designed to get kids outside, build self-confidence, and strengthen teamwork and conservation awareness.  There is fishing, archery and overnights in tents also; a great camp experience for older kids. These day camps run from 8-4 Monday thru Friday, with early care starting at 7:00am and late pick up until 5:00pm, there are weekly and daily rates for both camps. 

 

New this summer, Belgrade Lakes Youth Sailing Program sponsored by Great Pond Yacht Club and SailMaine and hosted by the Belgrade Center for All Seasons.  These sailing camps will run from July 21st – August 15th with two sessions per day and have limited space. It will be so exciting to see all of the kids in sailboats sailing around Great Pond! To sign up or for more information go to: http://www.sailmaine.org/Tab03_Programs/0303_Junior/0303_106-BelgradeLakes.html

 

Weekly adult activities at the Center for All Seasons include:   

Mondays ~ Ping Pong Club at 5:30pm.

Tuesdays ~ Morning Paddle at 7:30am using our canoes and kayaks & Pickleball at 5:30pm (there will be no pickleball July 8th) .

Wednesdays ~ Adult Basketball at 7:00pm.

Thursdays ~ Water Aerobics 10 – 11am (weather permitting), Bridge 12:00 (they would love to have you join them, beginners are encouraged to come learn how to play!) and at 6:00pm join us for Yoga in our tranquil waterfront cottage.

Sundays ~ Adult Basketball 6:00pm.

 

Come enjoy the in-ground pool for Community Swim Monday – Friday from 3-5pm, as well as community swim lessons on Thursday afternoons.  Or swim anytime at the Town beaches on Great Pond and Long Pond.

 

The Belgrade Recreation Department has a new monthly e-newsletter to keep you up to date on What’s Happening.  You can sign up on our website: http://www.townofbelgrade.com/belgrade-center-for-all-seasons  or on our Facebook page.

 

Don’t forget the North Belgrade Community Center hosts a Pot Luck Dinner the second Saturday of each

month.  The dinner starts at 5:00pm and everyone is welcome. Come enjoy great food and company.

 

The Belgrade Community Center for All Seasons and North Belgrade Community Center are available to rent for your next birthday or anniversary party, family reunion or business meeting. 

 

The Belgrade Board of Parks and Recreation meets the last Monday of the month at 6:00pm at the Center for All Seasons our next meeting on June 30th.   If you are interested in recreation in Belgrade or joining the "playground committee" call us at 495-3481.

 

Sincerely,

Valencia Schubert  

Recreation Director

 

Notes from the Tax Collector:

Just a reminder the property tax bills will be in the mail by the end of June.  The 2014 property taxes are due September 12th and interest begins the following day. The Town does accept credit cards, with a 2.45% convenience fee.  For your convenience, you may also pay them online at www.townofbelgrade.com . Under on line services you may use either a debit/credit card with the convenience fee or you may use your checking account for a fee of $1.50. You will need to have your real estate account number to use the system. In addition, the Town does have a formal tax club, which gives you a chance to pay monthly, with interest accruing as normal. Please call the Town Office for additional information.

                                               

Property Tax Relief:

A reminder, to moving or new residents the Homestead Exemption is a program provides a measure of property tax relief for individuals who have owned homestead property in Maine for at least twelve months and make the property they occupy on April 1st (first) their permanent residence. Property owners would receive an exemption of $10,000. This program is not income based and is available for all Maine Residents who meet the criteria. The forms are available at the Town Office prior to April 1st to receive this benefit. If you have already applied there is no need to send in an application annually, once you receive this benefit, you will receive it every year.

 

Transfer Station News:

RECYCLE PLEASE take the time to help us remove recyclable materials out of our town solid waste stream.  The more we can recycle the less we have to landfill.  This is better for the environment that we live in.  Think about it, this earth is the only home we will ever have; we need to take care of it. It only takes a few minutes to sort out the recyclable items, so please do so for the future of our world and community we live in. Every little bit counts.  Working together we can make a difference.  Let’s recycle!

 

Reminder to Pick up your Transfer Station Punch Card it is still good until March 31, 2015:  In March of 2013 the Solid Waste and Recycling Committee implemented a trial two-year Punch Card system which allows residential property owners to drop off items free at the transfer station. This program replaced the free drop-off event program held twice a year. The punch cards are numbered and come with a matching numbered window sticker.  They are given out to all residential property owners and verified renters. The cards must be picked up at the town office during normal working hours. Renters must have written proof verifying they are renting from the residential property owner in order to obtain a punch card. You can’t give your punch card to anyone else to use. If you lose your punch card are non-replaceable. The Town ordered 3,000 cards and has given out approximately 800 cards.  Please take advantage of this opportunity to take items to the Transfer Station for free.  

 

 Cemetery News:

The Town has a new Facility Maintenance/ Sexton, his name is Gary Foss. Gary may be reached at 215-1021 for all your cemetery related questions.  Welcome Gary!

 

The Town of Belgrade would like to thank all the following individuals who participated in the Memorial Day Service events.  As always it was very special and memorable.

Messalonskee High School Senior, Darby Martin, the Loons Acapella Quintet, the Union Church Choir Members: Glenn Baxter, Gwen Chase, Laura Grams, Beth Held, Nancy Mastromarino, Don Petersen, Linda Petersen, Kelly Webster, Loyce Hayslett and Louise Young , the Belgrade Boy Scout Troop 453: Lucas Lenfest, Pierce Foxwell, Gil Whitehead, Trent Thompson and Scout Leaders, Master of Ceremonies, Robert Early

Guest Speaker, Major Bradley G. Kelso, US Army National Guard, members of the Belgrade Fire Department, Veteran’s Roll: Michael Barrett, Dexter (Buzz) Bridges, Jr., Samantha Luce, Shawn Grant and Gary Mahler, Sexton Gary Foss, cemetery crew the Cemetery Committee , Pastor Terry Tiner, North Belgrade Baptist Church, Jason Carey, Sound System and a special thank you to Mary Galouch, Bruce Galouch, Robert Lewis, Bobbi Mahler, Gary Mahler, Paul Yeaton and others who participated in posting the flags on the graves of veterans.If you would like to assist with next year’s service, please contact the town office at 495-2258 or mvogel@townofbelgrade.com

 

The Sexton would like to thank residents for their patience in the repair and re-setting of head stones that were displaced over the winter months.  Provost has been contacted and will be resetting the headstones in the near future.

 

Belgrade Public Library

NEW HOURS: Tuesdays and Thursdays 10-7; Wednesdays 2-6; Saturdays 10-1

Just a quick reminder that the Library has changed its hours.  The Library is now open on Saturdays from 10am-1pm and closed on Fridays. Hours on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays remain the same.  Saturday hours will last throughout the summer and fall until December.

 

Do you have a library card yet?  All Belgrade residents are entitled to use the library free of charge.  Nonresidents can purchase a family card for only $15 annually to use all Belgrade Library services.  (A resident is defined as anyone who pays taxes to the Town of Belgrade.)  Come see what we have to offer - books, movies, audio recordings, computer access, children and adult programs, wi-fi access, and so much more!

 

Summer is almost here and our Summer Reading Program kicks off July 1st.  Our theme this year is Fizz Boom Read.  It’s every kind of science imaginable. Kids can register to read and receive prizes throughout the summer.  Get a voucher for a free Portland Sea Dogs ticket just by signing up!  Those who read ten or more library books will receive a free book at the end of the program.  Stop into the Library for more details.

 

Some of our special Summer Reading events include (programs are free and open to the public):

 

  • Dinoman (July2nd at 10am – Center for All Seasons)
  • Friends Book Sale (July 4th at 9am – Downtown Belgrade Lakes)
  • Mad Science of Maine (July 23rd at 10am – Center for All Seasons)
  • Science Experiments (every Tuesday afternoon at 2:30pm – Belgrade Public Library)
  • Story Time & Crafts (every Thursday morning at 10:30am – Belgrade Public Library)
  • Minecraft (every Thursday afternoon at 3pm – Belgrade Public Library)

 

  • Author Susan Poulin will be visiting July 8th at 6pm – Belgrade Public Library - to help Find Your Inner Moose (signing and selling books afterwards)
  • Author Paul Betit will be visiting August 12th at 6pm – Belgrade Public Library - to discuss his fictional Vietnam War Mystery Trilogy including Phu Bai, Kagnew Station, and The Man in the Canal (signing and selling books afterwards)
  • Book Club (second Tuesday of every month at 10:30am – Belgrade Public Library)

 

We want to welcome all our wonderful summer folks back for another great year.  Please consider this your personal invite to stop in, introduce yourself to the new Library Director, and tour our beautiful Library space. We look forward to seeing you!

 

As always new books are being added to our collection.  Check out the new titles on display or search our catalog online at the library website.  Let us know if you have suggestions to enhance our library collection!  Don’t forget to check out the library website or our Facebook page (facebook/BelgradePublicLibrary) for more information and updates.

Respectfully submitted,

Janet Patterson - Library Director

Community Information & News

 

BELGRADE/ROME SPECIAL NEEDS FOOD PANTRY:

The Belgrade/Rome Special Needs Food Pantry, located on Route 27 at the Belgrade Town Office, has been providing a valuable service to eligible residents of Belgrade and Rome for almost 20 years. 

 

In Maine, 14.9 percent of households, about 200,000 people are food insecure according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  One in four Maine children are food insecure. Often hard working adults, seniors and children simply can not make ends meet. Due to the difficult economic times, many of our neighbors are facing this situation.  In 2013 the Food Pantry assisted a total of 80 households from the towns of Rome and Belgrade. Within those households, 162 adults and 104 children were provided with a week’s worth of food and household items each month. 

 

With the monetary assistance and item donations (in 2013 over 11,500 item donations) from the taxpayers of Rome and Belgrade, along with donations from individuals, schools, clubs, churches, foundations and government support, the Pantry was able to assist families who would otherwise have gone hungry each month.  Residents of Rome and Belgrade who may be in need of assistance are welcome to visit the Pantry monthly for additional and supplemental items to their family’s budget.  We are open on Tuesday from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. throughout the year.

 

Without the dedicated volunteer force of more than 40 individuals who collect, purchase, organize and distribute contributions this valuable service would not be possible.  Anyone interested in making a monetary or food item donation, please drop it off to either the Belgrade or Rome Town Office.   Anyone interested in volunteering their time and talent to this worthwhile organization, please call Marylou Butterfield at 495-2022.

 Union Church Summer Activities:

·         6/28 -  5 p.m. to 7 p.m.  Italian Dinner Night $8 for adults and $4 for Youth 5 to 12

·         7/4 - 11am to 3pm-  Strawberry Shortcake Sale

(Also, the Messalonskee Robotics Team will be holding a hot dog sale at this same time)

·         8/16 -  5 p.m. to 7 p.m. - Turkey Dinner 

 

Friends of the Belgrade Public Library:

The Friends of the Belgrade Public Library are very busy with fundraising this year to help maintain the library at 124 Depot Road in Belgrade. The library has now been open for a year and a half with much enthusiasm. We hope that you all have a chance to go to the library and see all the new books and programs it has to offer.

 

June Fundraiser

The annual Yard Sale is being held on Saturday, June 14th from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Day’s Real Estate at 262 Augusta Road in Belgrade. We are still looking for useable items for the sale. For more information you may contact Joan MacKenzie at 242-9408.

 

July Fundraisers

The Friends are very busy, beginning with our Annual July 4th Book Sale held on July 4th in Belgrade Lakes Village from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. We are still accepting books for the book sale and they may be dropped off at the Belgrade Public Library. For more information and to volunteer you may call Linda Bacon at 649-4238. At the book sale there will also be a homemade pies for sale; to bake pies or volunteer you may call Laverne Pelletier at 495-2966.

 

On July 10th we are having our 6th Annual Golf Tournament at the Belgrade Lakes Golf Course with an 11:30 a.m. tee off time and a scramble format. Following the Golf Tournament there is a cocktail/buffet reception and an awards ceremony with Tom Alter from the PGA tour as the MC. There are awards for the golfers for the longest drive for a man and woman, along with closest to the pin for a man and woman and the two teams with the lowest score. There is also a car, sponsored by Charlie’s of Augusta for a hole in one. The awards event is followed by a Live and Silent Auction with Dexter “Buzz” Bridges as the Auctioneer. We have many new and different items this year that will make the bidding fun. For information on playing in the tournament, coming to the cocktail reception or being a sponsor for the golf tournament, you may contact Judy Johnson at 495-2101

 

Our last fundraising event in July is our 5th Annual 5K Road Race being held on Saturday, July 26th at 8 a.m. at Belgrade Central School. You may Run, Jog, or Walk and there are many prizes available in the different age categories. Pre-Registration fee is $15.00 and needs to be in by July 15th registering the day of the race is $20. You may register online at the Library website, the Friends of Belgrade Public Library website and at RunReg.com. For more information and to volunteer for this event you may contact John House at 465-3524.

 

August Fundraiser

Our last fundraising event for the summer is a fantastic Acoustic Duo from Massachusetts called Britannica. This musical night is being held at the Center for All Seasons on Friday, August 15th at 7 p.m. For more information you may contact Beverly Megill at 495-2286.

 

We hope to see you this summer at our fundraisers. We really appreciate all of the volunteers and people that support all of the events that we do. Thanks so much to everyone from the Friends.

 

Belgrade Lakes Region Business Group Friday,  July 4th Activities:

  • 8-4   1830 House.. 134 Main Street, Free candle drawing, Painting demonstration, free cookies and strawberry lemonade

 

  • 9-2   Book Sale and Fresh Baked Pie Sale in Belgrade Lakes Village 495-2101 sponsored by the Friends of the Belgrade Public Library

 

  • 9-3 Win a Pontoon Boat or Fishing Boat … BLA Raffle tickets being sold across from Day’s Store -All proceeds go to pay for BLA water quality programs

 

  • 10-3 Maine Lakes Resource Center..  Art and conservation display

 

  • 10-2   Antique Boat Display along mill stream 778-1706

 

  • 10-4   The Farmers Market at the Maine Lakes Resource Center

 

  • 11- 6   Bounce House – Face Painting, and refreshments at the Village Peddler Gift Shop  on Lakeshore drive

 

  • 11:30-3 Strawberry Festival, Hotdogs and Activities at the Union Church

 

  • 11:30-4 “Get Physical!” With Marcel and Jill at Dockside Physical Therapy at 47 Main Street

 

  • 12 – Lunch and Live Music at the Village Inn

 

  • 1:30-2:30 Free Ice Cream Social at the Belgrade Lakes Center for All Seasons (sponsored by Gifford’s Ice Cream) 495-3481

 

  • 3:00   Parade Line- up for all vehicles and floats at Rome Farm (on Route 27, just north of Belgrade Lakes Village)

Notes from the Health Nurse:

Understanding Lyme Disease Spring and summer are upon us and so are those pesky bugs.  There have already been a large number of ticks spotted on people and their pets, so be sure to check your hair and clothing every time you are in the woods, dunes or tall grass where you might come in contact with any ticks, spiders or any other stinging or biting insect.  Cover up with long sleeves and tuck your pants in your socks.  Insect repellent (select one that includes tick coverage) is also advised.

 

Lyme disease is a bacterial tick-borne infection that affects humans, dogs, horses and other animals.  Since 1986, there have been more than 100 cases confirmed among Maine residents, primarily in York and Cumberland counties.  It is just beginning to appear in inland areas.  Deer ticks (jet black, slightly smaller than a black fly) are the only known carriers of bacteria that cause Lyme disease.  Adult or nymphs can transmit the infection and it is believed that they must remain attached to the skin for at least 24 hours for the infection to occur.

 

The first and classic sign of Lyme disease is a donut shaped circular rash that appears around the site of the bite after 7-10 days.  Other symptoms may include: hives, facial swelling, redness of the eyes and flu-like symptoms (headache, fever, stiff neck, aches in joints and muscles and fatigue).  These symptoms decline over a period of a few weeks.  The diagnosis is made by a visit to your medical provider and treated with the appropriate antibiotics.  If untreated, more serious symptoms may appear.  These include: arthritis in large joints, stiff neck and weakness in the arms, legs or chest.  Prompt medical treatment at the onset of symptoms will likely prevent any serious complications.

 

TIP: To remove an embedded tick, use tweezers to grip the head of the tick and pull gently and firmly until the tick lets go.  Do not handle the tick with your bare hands.

 

If you would like to have ticks you find identified, place tick in rubbing alcohol (in a sealed container) and pack carefully in crush proof container with name, address and telephone # and send to:

 

The Maine Lyme Disease Project

Maine Medical Center Research

50 Hospital St.

Augusta, Me.

 

Source C.D.C.

Respectfully, Katherine Riddle

 

 


 

 


 


 

Belgrade Historical Society News

The Historical Society will be holding its annual meeting on Tuesday, June 24th at 6 p.m. at the Center for All Seasons.  The election of officers will take place.  There will be light refreshments available.  

Please visit our Historical display at the Center For All Seasons!

 
March Newsletter
 

NOTES FROM THE TOWN MANAGER

 We had a sprinkler head break in the old library room at the recreation center which released over 1000 gallons of water. The ceiling in the room was made of sheetrock which didn’t allow for any access into the area above the ceiling. That area was not accessible from the attic either, it did however, have an outside vent. We believe very high winds caused insulation to blow down from the attic allowing the cold into the area. This was the only section of the ceiling that was not strapped into the entire building.

 

We have removed the sheetrock ceiling from the room, strapped off the area, replaced the insulation and installed a hanging ceiling that allows us into that attic any time.  We were lucky that the library had moved and that the materials the Historical Society had placed into the area were in show cases and protected from water.  All work should be finished by the end of February.  Also, Valencia has done a great job keeping the facility bookings and activities from being canceled during this process. 

 

The new bathroom at the transfer station is scheduled to be completed this month. The new well and septic system are installed and the bathroom itself is built. Interior finish, bathroom facilities, vent pipe, and a heater is left.  The bathroom will be a great improvement for employees and will also allow us to clean the entire facility. We will be purchasing a heated pressure washer that we will used to wash down all the buildings. 

 

This is a quick update on the new sand & salt solution.  We are using a brine solution on the sand & salt however it is only being used on our South Belgrade plowing loops.  I wish I could report to you how it is working but we have had an unusual storm pattern so far this season.  It seems to be working well as far as keeping the roadways open as long as the temperature keeps above 20 degrees.  The brine solution is purchased from ME-DOT for $0.25 a gallon and they mix the solution at their Fairfield facility.  ME-DOT tells us that they mix in calcium chloride when the temperature gets below 20 degrees so the solution will work down below 0 degrees. We have not seen the solution work that well at those temperatures.  The other problem we are having is the solution needs to be put down as soon as the storm starts because the solution works from the road surface up to melt the snow. Our contractors are trying to get out as fast as they can since they live in Smithfield.  It takes time for them to drive from Smithfield, load their trucks and get to work on the roadways.  I will have a complete report on winter road maintenance for you in May.

 

Just a reminder that we still offer a monthly tax payment plan for property owners and that many of our services can be done on-line.  Just check out our website for those services and for other helpful information.

 

2014 TOWN MEETING:       

Fire & Rescue are requesting to hire a full-time FF-1 & Rescue employee to be on duty 40 hours a week and a 10 hour a week (per diem) fill-in person.  Please ask Dan MacKenzie for any added information on these positions. 

Our new Road Commissioner is active in doing repair work on the roadways.  He requested more maintenance funds in order to increase the amount of work directly dealing with ditching, shoulder grading, and brush cutting.  This is the first requested increase in maintenance road funds in several years.

 

The paving budget is also up a little this year even after the Select Board & Budget Committee lowered their request by over $140,000.  The reconstruction and paving of the Point Road was removed from this year’s paving list and replaced with Loon Cove Road and added shim work on several other roadways. We will also be finishing the reconstruction and paving of Chandler Road which had to have a lot of expensive reconstruction work done before we could do the paving.  We do not want to pave any roadway until the sub base, ditching, cross culverts, and shoulders have been correctly reconstructed for the pavement layer.

 

We are requesting another $50,000 for the new Town Office Capital Account.  We have been looking for a centrally located lot to build the new office on and have contacted some land owners to see if they would be interested in selling. During this process we have contacted some towns that have built new offices requesting building plans from them and asking some if we can tour their new facility.  We want to make sure we get the most out what we spend while being able to meet our needs for now as well as allowing us to expand in the future.

 

The Select Board received six requests for funds all dealing with water quality issues. The total of the requests was over $50,000 and because of the amount being so high the Board decided to place all the requests on the secret ballot and let the residents decided if they wanted to fund them or not. In the past the Board has used funds received from land use violations to fund these requests but we presently do not have that amount in reserve. The Board also feels that other surrounding Towns should be allocating funds towards some of the requests so they are not all funded by Belgrade taxes.

 

If all articles pass as presented then we will be requesting permission to spend funds in excess of what the State feels we should be spending, which is known as the LD # 1 resolution.  It is also the last article to be voted on at Town Meeting.  The LD # 1 figure will be adjusted during the Town Meeting as the articles are voted on.

 

Hope to see you all at the Town Meeting on March 15, 2014

 

Yours truly,

Gregory E. Gill

 Town Clerks CornerTown Meeting is coming again soon! We will be voting on the following officials: 1 Selectperson for 3 year term; Road Commissioner-1year term and RSU#18 Member- 1 year. Also, we have 15 referendum questions to vote on. Voting will take place on March 14th from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM at the Center for All Seasons. Town Meeting is on March 15th  at 1:00 PM at the Center for All Seasons, to vote on the remaining articles of the warrant.

 

Absentee ballots are available until March 11th.  If you want one mailed, you need to call the Town Office and request that it be sent to you, or you can come to the Town Office and pick one up or vote while you are here!

 

We now have the Town’s tax cards, tax maps and commitment books on our website. Keep checking for any new information that is available!

 

 

Belgrade Public Library

124 Depot Road

(207)495-3508                        www.belgrade.lib.me.us

 

MARCH HOURS: Tuesdays and Thursdays 10-7; Wednesdays 2-6; Fridays 10-1

APRIL- SEPTEMBER HOURS: Tuesdays and Thursdays 10-7; Wednesdays 2-6; Saturdays 10-1

 

The Library is excited to announce a change in hours.  Beginning in April, the Library will be open on Saturdays from 10am-1pm and closed on Fridays. Hours on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays will remain the same.  Saturday hours will last throughout the summer until September.

 

Do you have a library card yet?  All Belgrade residents are entitled to use the library free of charge.  Nonresidents can purchase a family card for only $15 annually to use all Belgrade Library services.  Come see what we have to offer - books, movies, audio recordings, computer access, children and adult programs, wi-fi access, and so much more!

 

Mark your calendar for the following programs and events throughout the year:

*Story time every Thursday at 10:30am

*Minecraft the last Thursday of the month at 3pm-6pm

*Book Discussion Group the second Friday of the month at 10:30am through March and the second Tuesday of the month at 10:30am April-September.

 

As always new books are being added to our collection.  Check out the new titles on display or search our catalog online at the library website.  Let us know if you have suggestions to enhance our library collection!  Don’t forget to check out the library website or our Facebook page (facebook/BelgradePublicLibrary) for more information and updates.

 

Ever wonder where your tax dollar goes at the Library? For 2013, look at what was checked out compared with what these items would have cost tax payers IF PURCHASED INDIVIDUALLY (based on the Maine State Library 2013 value calculator estimates).  What a great investment!

 

                                           2013                                                                                             Value

 

11,465 books, audio books, movies borrowed @ $17 per item                                              $194,905        1286 eBooks and audio books downloads @ $15 per book                                                                19,290

502 hours of computer time @ $12 per hour value                                                                      6,024

7 per day (estimate) of WiFi use x 364 days @ $12                                                                   30,576 

Library Internet signal is available 24/7

225 InterLibrary Loan items borrowed @ $30 each                                                                      6,750       

492 Reference transactions @ $15 each                                                                                      7,380

67 children’s programs with 1079 attending @ $6 value                                                               6,474

20 adult programs with 204 attending @ $10 value                                                                      2,040

Total    (draft 1/17/2014)                                                                                                          $273,439

 

2013 budget    (open 25 hours each week throughout the year)                                              $45,849

Belgrade Public Library receives one-half of one percent of the property tax paid. 

For each $1000 paid about $5 goes to operate the Library. Thank you very much!

 

The return on your investment was $5.96 for every tax dollar spent! Wow!

 

Respectfully submitted,

Janet Patterson - Library Director

 

 

Friends of the Belgrade Public Library

 

The Friends will be sponsoring 8 fundraisers this year to raise money to support and maintain the new library building for the community of Belgrade. Our fundraisers are listed below along with our membership form. We welcome new members and we can always use new volunteers to help us at our fundraising events. We need people to help us set up the events, clean up from the events, solicit food, be willing to volunteer at the events and be able to attend our meetings. The Friends meetings are held once a month on the 3rd Wednesday night at 6:30 p.m. at Day’s Real Estate Conference Room.

We want to thank all of our members, volunteers and donors because without all of you this new library building never would have happened and we would be unable to continue our promise to maintain the library for the Town of Belgrade.

 

Fundraisers for 2014

1.    Book Sale on Saturday, February 22nd from 9-2p.m. at Belgrade Central School.

Basket Bingo with the Fire & Rescue Association on Saturday, March 22nd from 5 to 9:30 p.m. at Belgrade Central School. Tickets may be purchased by calling 242-9408, or 495-2101.

2.    A Book Release Reception for Earl Smith’s new book, “More Dam Trouble” on Sunday, April 6th at 2 p.m. at the Community Center in Belgrade Lakes.

3.    A Yard Sale on Saturday, June 14th at Days Real Estate from 8-2 p.m.

4.    Book Sale & Homemade Pies, Friday, July 4th from 9-2 p.m. in Belgrade Lakes Village

5.    Golf Tournament on Thursday, July 10th at the Belgrade Lakes Golf Course

6.    A 5K Road Race on Saturday, July 26th at 8 a.m. at Belgrade Central School

7.    Britannica, a fantastic Acoustic Duo from Massachusetts on Friday August 15th at 7 p.m. at the Community Center in Belgrade Lakes.

 

Check out our website at www.friendsofbelgradepubliclibrary.org or our facebook page Friends of the Belgrade Public Library for updates on our meetings and fundraisers.

 

Any donations to help with the operating and maintenance of the new library are tax deductible and are always gratefully appreciated. Checks may be made out to Friends of the Belgrade Public Library and mailed to the Friends of the Belgrade Public Library, P.O. Box 474, Belgrade, ME 04917.

 

                                    Judy Johnson, President, jpjohnson027@roadrunner.com

                                    Beverly Megill, Vice President, beverlymegill207@roadrunner.com

                                    Linda Sprague, Secretary, lynn_phil@myfairpoint.net

                                    Diane Bourque, Treasurer, ddbourque@roadrunner.com

 

 

 

2014 Membership form for the Friends of the Belgrade Public Library

 

              Name:_____________________________________  Address:______________________________________

 

               Phone: ____________________  Email:_________________________________________________________

 

Please mark with an X:

 

____$10.00 Family Membership        ____$25.00 Supporter____$50.00 Director ____$100 Benefactor

 

                    Please make checks payable to “Friends of the Belgrade Public Library” and return with this form to:

 Friends of the Belgrade Public Library, PO Box 474 Belgrade ME 04917.

 

Variable Milfoil … With Your Help A Fight We Can Win

By Lynn Matson, Belgrade Lakes Association

 

Belgrade faces a threat that could be devastating for our entire community.  The problem is an invasive aquatic plant called variable milfoil.  Invasive milfoil has destroyed the recreational value of many lakes across the country and the same thing could happen right here in the Belgrades.

 

Variable milfoil can grow an inch a day in water up to 20 feet deep.  With no natural enemies, it forms thick mats at the surface that make swimming and boating all but impossible. 

 

This invader is not new to our area.  Invasive milfoil has been growing in Belgrade Stream and Messalonskee Lake for years.  But the problem is potentially much worse for Great Pond, where it was found growing in 2010.  In fact, the entire lower third of Great Pond is less than 20 feet deep and could become covered in milfoil from shore to shore.

 

Variable milfoil is not just a problem facing those people who live right on the water.  Our lakes are the economic engine that drive our entire community.  If we lose Great Pond and Long Pond to invasive milfoil, everyone will suffer.

 

Here’s what could happen.  First, our lakes will be much less attractive to prospective property buyers, renters, vacationers and boaters.  Their numbers will drop which will have a dramatic affect on our local businesses, some of which might even be forced to close.

 

Property values of camps on the lakes would also drop shifting more of the tax burden to non-shorefront properties.  This is significant because today over 60% of the total tax revenue in Belgrade comes from lakeside properties. 

 

This is not a hypothetical situation.  Lakeshore property values decreased 15-20% on Lake Arrowhead in Limerick, Maine after it became infested with milfoil.  The same thing can happen here.

 

How Bad Can It Get?

To answer that question, let’s take a look at Chautauqua Lake in western New York.  It’s 13,000 acres and highly valued for recreational use, just like our lakes.  But it’s overrun with milfoil. 

 

To make their lake usable, the Chautauqua Lake Association employs 8 milfoil harvesters, 8 barges, 3 mobile shore conveyors, two front-end loaders, a fleet of 8 dump trucks and a summer staff of 40.  The replacement value of their equipment alone is $2,845,000 and their annual operating budget is over $500,000. 

 

In 2013 they removed almost 15 million pounds of milfoil from their lake … that’s 85 truckloads a week, all summer long!  We can’t let that happen here.

 

Is This A Fight We Can Win?

The short answer is yes.  The Belgrade Lakes Association (BLA) in partnership with the Belgrade Regional Conservation Alliance (BRCA), both based in Belgrade Lakes Village, have been waging a very successful battle with the invasive milfoil on Great Pond for the last two years. 

 

It is important to understand that success does not mean fully eradicating the invasive milfoil from Great Pond.  That’s unrealistic because the milfoil is intermingled with native plants along a mile and half stretch of Great Meadow Stream and in several heavily vegetated acres in North Bay. 

 

What is realistic is removing 90% of the invasive plants every year.  That will reduce the size of infestation and make it easier and less expensive to control in subsequent years.  It will also greatly reduce the chance of the milfoil spreading to other parts of the lake and into Long Pond. 

 

It should also be pointed out that the BRCA and BLA are working closely with the Friends of Messalonskee volunteers and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection on plans to control the extensive milfoil in Belgrade Stream below Wings Mill dam and in critical “hot spots” in Messalonnskee Lake, such as the areas around boat ramps.

 

2014 STOP MILFOIL Action Plan

While we have made tremendous progress reducing the size of the milfoil infestation the last two years, this fight is not over.  We need to keep at it or we’ll lose all the headway that we’ve made.

 

This summer we will implement another very aggressive STOP MILFOIL action plan to remove the invasive milfoil from Great Meadow Stream and Great Pond.  The divers from New England Milfoil will be back at work pulling the plants as will a team from the BRCA.

 

We will also build our own DASH (Diver Assisted Suction Harvester) Boat to increase the productivity of the plant removal operation.  Having our own DASH Boat will also permit us to remove the milfoil on a much more cost effective basis in the future as we’ll be able to scale back and eventually eliminate the major expense of hiring a dive contractor to do this work.

 

As you might expect, this mitigation work is expensive.  Approximately $200,000 was spent in 2012 and again in 2013.  But that is just a fraction of what it will cost us if our lakes become overrun with milfoil, to say nothing of what it will do to our community. 

 

Last year the Town of Belgrade contributed $20,000 to the STOP MILFOIL capital campaign.  That same amount is being requested again this year.  Almost all the remainder of the funding has come from private donations.

 

How Can You Help?

     1.  Learn to identify milfoil.  Then check your boat, motor and trailer, fishing gear, duck hunting gear, kayaks and canoes for plant fragments.

     2.  Be vigilant when you are on or near the water.  If you see variable milfoil, please call BRCA Milfoil Program Director Toni Pied at 207 215-2685 so she can verify the identification and take quick action.

    3.  Vote “YES” on the STOP MILFOIL articles at the Belgrade town election this March.  Those funds are critically needed to continue this fight.

 

This fight with invasive milfoil can be won.  With your support it will be won.  Our community is counting on it.  Thanks for your concern, your vigilance and your support on Articles 14, 15 and 16 on Belgrade’s election ballot this March.

                                                 Belgrade Lakes Region Business Group

www.belgradelakesmaine.com

 

The Belgrade Lakes Region Business Group (BLRBG) would like to thank those who are a part of our community for supporting local business and for supporting our organization and the events that we sponsor.  The BLRBG has begun preparing for our annual enrollment.  We appreciate and encourage existing members to renew their membership for 2014.  For those businesses that are not currently members we would like to highlight the wonderful networking opportunities, community involvement, state of the art website, printed maps, and many other benefits of joining the BLRBG.

Upcoming Events:

March 14th  PLEASE VOTE YES on Article 17!  The BLRBG matches these funds to make July 4th in Belgrade Lakes possible.

March 19th Monthly Meeting open to the public:  Laura Benedict from the Red Barn will be speaking about her journey.  8:30am at the MLRC.

April 16th Monthly Meeting open to the public:  Nancy Marshall of Nancy Marshall Communications will be speaking about creating your personal brand.  8:30am at the MLRC.

May 8th  Annual Meeting at the MLRC.

May 21st Alfond Center for Health tour of the new hospital

June 28th Information Center Season Opening

4th of July  Join us for a wonderful day!  Parade, frog jumping contest, and much more!

Save the Date!  Existing BLRBG members and those who are not members but are interested in joining our group please mark your calendars for our Annual Meeting.  Our Annual meeting will be held Thursday, May 8th at the Maine Lakes Resource Center from 6-8pm.  This year’s meeting will again be an open house format.  There will be food, a cash bar, mingling, and booths displaying the wonderful things that our group has to offer the Belgrade community.

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank you for your support last year in approving the referendum vote which assists us in organizing and funding the 4th of July fireworks and events.  We would like to ask for your support again this year so that we can continue this great tradition which makes our town so unique and special.  Please support Article 17! 

Meghan Loubier

President, BLRBG

 

 

 

Newsletter Update from Belgrade Regional Conservation Alliance (BRCA)

Courtesy Boat Inspection (CBI) program: In 2014, BRCA plans to increase coverage on Great Pond (our busiest boat launch) and Messalonskee Lake (our next busiest lake and the most infested). Prevention is the key to winning the battle against invasive aquatic plants and is much more cost-effective than removing plants once they are established. Belgrade has helped fund the CBI program for over 10 years. 

Milfoil Removal program: BRCA continues to work in partnership with Belgrade Lakes Association on the STOP Milfoil campaign to remove milfoil from Great Pond.  In 2014, BRCA will build on last year’s milfoil removal work in Messalonskee Lake and Belgrade Stream by focusing on four priority areas: 1. Boat launches (both public and unofficial launch sites); 2. Areas close to uninfested waterbodies (the area next to Wing’s Mill Dam); 3. Endangered wildlife habitat (Black Tern and Least Bittern habitat in Messalonskee Marsh); and 4. Newly infested areas. BRCA is using a USFWS grant to build a new DASH (diver assisted suction harvester) boat and to do milfoil removal. Belgrade’s contribution will be used as match for the USFWS grant and to leverage more funding from the State of Maine and other foundations.

Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) program:  YCC improves the health of our lakes by installing “best management practices” (BMPs), like stone riprap and plant buffers on lake shore properties, that reduce erosion and phosphorus from getting into lakes to improve water quality and to reduce algae blooms. Since 1996, when YCC was started, we have conducted 955 projects – 294 of these projects were done in Belgrade!  Funding is a team effort – towns fund 19% of YCC, lake associations fund 8%, individual donors and businesses/foundations fund 30%, and homeowners whose properties are improved fund 43%.  Belgrade has helped fund YCC for over 10 years.

Road Improvement program: BRCA was recently awarded a $75,000 DEP 319 grant to conduct erosion control work on Great Pond and Long Pond in 2014 and 2015.  We will work with towns, road associations, and private landowners to improve roads and driveways that cause erosion to these two lakes.  This cost-share grant requires 50% match from the road owner.  If you have a project, please give BRCA a call at 207-495-6039, or email us at brca@belgradelakes.org.

BRCA funding is provided by watershed towns, private landowners, businesses, lake associations, foundations, and state and federal grants.  We are all fortunate to have broad support for water quality improvement and invasive plant prevention in the Belgrade Lakes watershed. Town funding is critical to BRCA getting foundation and government grants for our watershed.  Thanks to the Town of Belgrade for your support!

 

Friends of Messalonskee Lake

      Hand-Pulling Milfoil Report-West Cove in Belgrade

Janna and Peter Townsend of Belgrade organized a small group of Messalonskee Friends to meet in Loon Cove West (west of the Sidney boat launch in Belgrade) to carefully remove milfoil, roots et al, using a hand-pulling technique. Janet Croce, Janetha Benson, Woody Woodworth paddled north, while Ned and Anne Hammond pontooned south to meet in the muddy cove. Searching for firm ground to begin pulling milfoil, we became more comfortable on the slimy bottom and began to gently, but quite easily pull the invasive plant up by the roots, depositing them in our burlap bags. The bounty was added to compost sites away from the lake. More efforts will be made this summer to control Milfoil in this cove with our volunteers and summer interns from Unity College.

Submitted by Janna Townsend

Loon Count Report

When we do the loon count on Messalonskee, each counter is on a boat, canoe or kayak. The lake is divided up into about seven areas and we are given 30 minutes to drive or paddle around the assigned section and count loons. The loon count is a state wide event held at the same time on all lakes in Maine (it is organized by Maine Audubon). The count is volunteer based and would not be possible without individuals making their time and resources available. I have tallied the final 2013 loon count results for Messalonskee and wanted to share them with you. We managed to cover the entire lake with counters again this year. We have a great group of counters and my Thanks to All the volunteers ! We had a total of 30 Adults and 4 Chicks for 2013. I believe the weather on the day of the count has a lot to do with large year to year changes in the count. Windy or rainy days make it difficult to spot every loon in a half hour trek.

Submitted by Ron Fluet

 

 

Friends of Messalonskee Lake-MILFOIL MAPPING ON MESSALONSKEE LAKE

Friends of Messalonskee were busy this fall tracking the locations of colonized milfoil, starting at the Oakland end of the lake and continuing in Belgrade and Sidney. Earlier this month, Anne and Ned Hammond, along with Rachel Whitney, set out to get specific locations of the milfoil using GPS tracking. They started at working slowly along the shore and shallow areas and checked the entire area near the Oakland boat landing end of the lake and continued their efforts at the south end of the Lake toward Belgrade. New growth has been detected in some areas, mostly in small patches of 3-5 stalks. Other areas marked were extensively covered in milfoil for many feet. There were 13 total marked areas, including the point off the boat landing beach, the house beside the landing, and the cove on the opposite side of the landing where it was the worst.The remaining shoreline will be inspected and milfoil plants documented. Getting coordinates of the plants will help in the future when we harvest more milfoil, and check to see if it has multiplied. If you see the FOM boat in front of your property on one of our search days, come chat with us! We would love to hear if you have seen any milfoil in your area and what control methods you have been using (if any). Call Ned at 660-5069 for assistance.

Submitted by Rachel Whitney-Unity College

Membership and Milfoil Boat Update

Through a big effort from volunteers, we have doubled our membership and have gotten tremendous support from corporate donors. We want to thank the Towns of Belgrade, Oakland and Sidney for their help in protecting our natural resources through their support of Friends of Messalonskee. One significant gift was half of a boat that was acquired by the "Friends". This boat will be converted to a Milfoil Suction Harvester and enable us to operate for approximately 1/2 of the cost of hiring outside operators. Without your help this effort would not be possible.

If anyone sees milfoil in the Lake, please let us know. Also,if anyone has an interest in volunteering for a committee or for lake projects, please give Ned Hammond a call at 207-660-5069.


 

 

News from the Belgrade Health Center

There are many fun and healthy things happening at the BRHC.

1.    Healthy Gains: This program helps patients set goals for healthy eating and weight loss, make connections with others and get needed support. Participants enrolled since the beginning of the program have collectively lost over 600 pounds. A free exercise class for the health center patients is part of the program but for $5, any community member can participate. If you would like to join this healthy group, contact the health center for further information. (495-3323).

2.    Healthy Gains Quarterly Class: In connection to the above program is a quarterly class with a specific focus. The next session starts Thursday. May 8th at 5:00. The focus will be on Growing Your Own Salad and someone could earn a free CSA membership for some summer veggies.

3.    Cooking Matters: This is a free program beginning Tuesday March 4 thru April 8, from 6-8 pm. Each of the six, two hour classes, will provide education around cooking healthy, tips on how to prepare meals and a sample of a meal. Each participant will go home with a bag of groceries related to the class. Call the Health Center to sign up.

4.    Pre-Diabetes Class:  This has also become a successful program. The new session begins March 28th from 4-5:00 pm. There is a 16 week commitment to the program to help participants learn to manage their condition.

 

 


Belgrade Recreation Department

This has been a very busy winter at the Belgrade Recreation Department! Our 2nd Gingerbread House Making Contest had 12 entries at the Holiday Fair on December 7th; they were all fantastic! Santa was joined by The Great Falls Model Railroad Club and the Maine 3-Railers Club with spectacular model train displays on Santa Movie Night. And this year’s Father Daughter Dance was bigger and better than ever. The music provided by Derek White was fantastic and the dads and girls looked amazing. Many thanks to our sponsor Gagne & Son Concrete!

Also this winter, Belgrade Rec. Dept. & Central Maine Wellness are offering discounted lift tickets to SUGARLOAF USA. All RSU #18 staff, students and their immediate families are eligible for $35 lift tickets. Other Belgrade Community members are eligible for $43 lift tickets. That is a HUGE savings! Remaining discount dates are: 3/2/2014, 3/16/2014, 3/23/2014 & 3/30/2014. Call our office before noon on the Thursday before you want to ski to reserve your spot.

After School Enrichment Program (ASEP) that runs week days from 3:30 – 5:30pm and Kidzone which runs 7:30am – 5:30pm during vacations from school, teacher workshops and snow days has been hopping with children. Call if your child would like to join the fun of Kidzone or ASEP!

We continue to hold our Community Lunch at the Center for All Season the first Tuesday of each month and at North Belgrade the third Tuesday of each month. Everyone is welcome! These are donation run lunches and all forms of donations are deeply appreciated. In case of inclement weather, please contact the Rec. Office.

Town elections will be held here on Friday, March 14th from 8:00am – 8:00pm, with Belgrade’s Town Meeting the next day at 1:00pm.

Our annual Easter Egg Hunt will be on Saturday, April 20th. We will be hiding 1500 eggs this year, with two Golden Eggs that have special week passes to Camp Golden Pond inside. It is fun morning to start the Easter weekend.

Last year, we held our first Mom & Son Super Hero Bash and it was Fantastic!! This year’s Bash will be on Friday, May 2nd from 6 – 8 pm and is sure to be just as incredible. G-Force Laser Tag will return with their new inflatable city to add to the fun. Moms and sons are encouraged to dress as super heroes again (come on moms, we know you are all super heroes) and be ready to enjoy an evening of wild and crazy play.

Cleaning out closets this spring? Join our yard sale on May 31st and make a little cash.

There are many daily activities this spring at the Center for All Seasons:

Monday-Friday ~ 10am-3 pm Move More Walking

Mondays ~ 3:30 – 5:30 Youth Basketball (must be accompanied by an adult) and Kids in the Kitchen cooking class. Ping Pong at 5:30pm for all ages.

Tuesdays ~ 9-10am Walk and Stretch, 5:30 – 7pm Pickleball in the gym, 6-8pm Cooking Matters for Adults

Wednesdays ~ 10-11:00am Toddler Playtime & Adult Basketball at 7:00pm.

Thursdays ~ 6:00 – 7:00pm Yoga

Sundays ~ 6:00pm Adult Basketball.

Coming this summer, Camp Golden Pond and Camp Loon start June 23rd, 4th of July Ice Cream Social and our 1st Lakeside Artisan Show August 3rd.

We are very interested in finding out what you want from the Recreation Dept. Please contact us; we would love to hear what you have in mind.

Don’t forget the North Belgrade Community Center hosts a Pot Luck Dinner the second Saturday of each month. The dinner starts at 5:00pm and everyone is welcome. Come enjoy great food and company.

The Belgrade Community Center for All Seasons and North Belgrade Community Center are available to rent for your next birthday or anniversary party, family reunion or business meeting. To learn more call 495-3481 or visit: http://www.townofbelgrade.com/belgrade-center-for-all-seasons and be sure to like us on Facebook.

If you are interested in recreation in Belgrade, please join the Board of Parks and Recreation a meeting on the 4th Monday of the month at 6:00pm at the Center for All Seasons.

Sincerely,

Valencia Schubert

Recreation Director - Town of Belgrade


FIRE CHIEF’S REPORT

It has been a long winter. Hopefully warmer weather is on the way.  During this cold winter I know woodstoves have been hard at work. Please remember to clean your chimneys. 

On another note, while snow is on the ground, it is a good time to burn your brush piles. As we approach Spring and the snow disappears, the Maine State Forest Service starts to issue class days and burning is only allowed on a class 1 or 2 day. Belgrade Fire Department started a free online burn permit site last year. It allows you to obtain permits at your convenience.  Go to burningpermit.com, fill out the permit and print it. The town wardens receive the information immediately.  If you go to the site and you are not able to receive a permit, it is a class 3,4 or 5 day and burning is not allowed. Burning is for brush or clean wood, no garbage or wood with paint on it. A permit is not required for a camp fire as long as it is in a rock lined pit.  Please be considerate of your neighbors when burning. 

I would also like to take this opportunity to discuss an article that will be presented to you on Friday before the town meeting. We continue to struggle with day time coverage for Fire and Rescue. The town has been fortunate to have a town employee available to respond to rescue and fire calls during the day for years, however he has accepted another position. This is going to leave the town with little or no coverage during the work week. I have proposed the town hire a full-time Firefighter/Rescue person for 40 hours a week with benefits and a per-diem position (no benefits) for 10 hours a week. This would provide coverage Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. – 5 p.m. for immediate fire and rescue and help with the increasing demands our State requires of Volunteer Fire Departments. If funded; the cost for the first year, which will cover a 6 month period from July 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014, would be $29,350 which would cost you $2.64 for every 100,000 in valuation. From that point on the position would be funded yearly at an estimated cost of $58,700 or $5.27 per 100,000 valuation on your tax bill. The decrease in volunteerism in all communities continues to be a problem that many towns continue to struggle with.

Chief Dan MacKenzie

207-446-0603

DATES TO REMEMBER!

 ABSENTEE BALLOTS AVAILABLE NOW THROUGH MARCH 11TH AT TOWN OFFICE.

 OFFICER AND REFERENDUM VOTING TAKES PLACE ON MARCH 14, 2014 FROM 8:00 AM TO 8:00 PM AT THE CENTER FOR ALL SEASONS!

TOWN MEETING IS MARCH 15, 2014 AT 1:00 AT THE CENTER FOR ALL SEASONS!

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 

DECEMBER NEWSLETTER - 2013 

 

BELGRADE QUARTERLY NEWSLETTER

DECEMBER 2013

                                            

Town Office:  PH: 495-2258  - Fax: 495-2742

Center For All Seasons: 495-3481

Belgrade Public Library: 495-3508

Transfer Station: 495- 3326

Town Website: www.townofbelgrade.com

 

 


                    

                     NOTES FROM THE TOWN MANAGER

 

WINTER ROAD MAINTENANCE:

 

Starting this winter, a new winter maintenance mix will be used for storm maintenance on the roadways in the Depot and Belgrade Lakes Village areas (South Plowing Contract)  The sand and salt will be wet down as it leaves the trucks with a liquid solution called BRINE.  The brine solution is a mixture of salt, water, and one other additive. Most of the time calcium chloride will be the additive used. The amount of calcium chloride put into the brine solution totally depends on the temperature of the roadway as salt stops melting the snow at around 20 degrees.

 

We will also be doing one plow loop with salt and brine with no sand.  The state uses this winter maintenance process on all of their roadways. The big difference with this maintenance is that the snow and ice is melted from the road surface up and not from the top down. By using this method there is a period of slush on the roadway; so, you must SLOW DOWN. 

 

The Town should see a 40 to 50% reduction in the amount of sand/salt mixture we apply to the roadways each storm. Please keep in mind that each year we have a different number of storms we must maintain; so, the total amount of material used during the year depends on the number of storms.   

 

We have been putting up around 7400 yards of sand/salt mixture each year at a cost of $105,060.

 

At this point in time, North Belgrade roadways will not be treated with the brine solution during a storm event.

 

Our South Belgrade plowing contract is on a two year trial basis to see how the brine solution works on our roadways.

 

Please call me with any concerns you might have with any roadway at any time.    (After 4:30 p.m. and until 8:30 a.m. cell # 592-6031/8:30 to 4:30 office # 495-2258)

 

NATURAL GAS LINE:

 

Because Belgrade doesn’t have a large customer base for natural gas and because we are not a through Town with direct access north to larger industrys; the gas line is currently traveling a direct route north to larger customers. The town has been put on the back burner until such time the gas companies get caught up building their pipe lines to the big customers.  It is anyone’s guess as to when they will finally get to Belgrade and talk to us as to what they are offering to do.

 

RT # 27 BELGRADE LAKES VILLAGE AREA RECONSTRUCTION:

 

We are waiting to see when this project will be placed on M-DOT list of projects that have been given the go ahead. Businesses owners in the Village are very worried about the loss of business because of road construction, as they should be.  The Town has requested M-DOT take this into consideration and they stop the rebuild work during the summer months so as not to interfere with the summer tourists and all the business they bring to the area.

 

The Town is still looking at what kind of lights we want or don’t want and what kind of cost will be attached to maintaining the new sidewalks.  Central Maine Power (CMP) will be installing a new much higher voltage service line through the Village District in 2015.  At that time CMP will be replacing their poles. We are hoping to be able to place the new poles at the backside of the sidewalks making it a lot easier to keep the sidewalks maintained during the winter storm season.  As you can see we have a lot more work to do before this project can go forward. We will keep you informed on our website, newsletters, and agendas. Please contact me at any time with your input.

 

MONTHLY TAX CLUB:

           

We offer a monthly tax club plan. Please come into the office so we can get you set up. There are several options as to how you make your payments, let’s talk!

 

IF YOU NEED HELP:

 

We don’t want to see anyone go without heat, lights, food, or medicines! If you don’t qualify for Maine State General Assistance we do have, “one time”, emergency funds we can use to help you out.  We also have other organizations that might be able to help; so, please come and see us.

 

Good health and happiness to all through the year!

 

Gregory E. Gill, Town Manager

 

 

TOWN OFFICE INFORMATION

 

Are you looking to get involved in your municipality?  

There are a variety of positions available some immediately and some elected positions in March, with nomination papers will be available on December 23st for the following positions;

 

Selectpersons- 1 position- 3 year term

Road Commissioner- 1 year

School Board for RSU 18- 1 position- 3 year term

 

Volunteer Board/ Committee Openings;

Board of Parks & Recreation has four openings and two Alternate positions

Transfer Station & Recycling Committee has two openings

Board of Assessment Review has one opening

 

Please notify the town office if you are interested or visit the town website for a committee application.

 

Election News

The November 5th election had 418 votes cast.  The new tabulator, provided by the state continues to be a great asset!

 

Dog Licenses

Licenses are due by December 31st, 2013.  A late fee is applied on February 1st, 2014.  You may also register your dogs on line through the town website at www.townofbelgrade.com.

 

The town is continuing to offer new services online to better serve the public.  We now are able to accept payments on line for personal property and real estate taxes.  There is a fee of $1 if you use a check, but if you use a credit/debit card there is a fee of 2.45%. 

 

“TOWN OFFICE GIVING TREE”

The Town Office has a holiday "Giving Tree" to assist local teens ages 13 through 17.  The tree is on display at the Town Office and is decorated with tags for residents to choose from.  Donors must return the wrapped gift, with the tag attached, to the Town office no later than Thursday, December 19th.

Some of the item requests are:                                                                 

Winter Hats & Gloves, Playing Cards, Puzzles, Board games, Arts/Craft Supplies, Country CD’s, PG-13 and under movies,  and Sports Equipment (footballs, baseball gloves, basketballs, Ping Pong Paddles/balls, etc.)             

                                                                                           

If you would like to choose a tag and cannot make it into the office, call and we will pull a tag and write your name on it.  Any help you can provide during this holiday season, to these teens, is appreciated.

 

For more information, call the office between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. weekdays at 495-2258.

 

 

 

Update of Belgrade Comprehensive Plan to Voters in March

Update of Belgrade Comprehensive Plan to Voters in March

Belgrade’s current 1998 Comprehensive Plan is in the process of being updated to reflect the population, economic, land use and other changes occurring in Town, including the continued degradation of the Belgrade Lakes.  The Comprehensive Plan lays out possible solutions to the problems and challenges identified in order to ensure Belgrade retains its quality of life.  A steering committee appointed by the Belgrade Board of Selectmen along with volunteer residents and businesses owners have been working with the Town’s consultant, Kennebec Valley Council of  Governments, to collect the needed background information and data, and rewrite the plan.  After a series of committee meetings over the past year on subjects ranging from economic development and historical resources to transportation and water quality of the lakes, a draft was completed in October and submitted to Selectmen for their review.  Following two public meetings with the Select Board and making changes requested by the Board, the Board voted unanimously in support of the plan and to submit to the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development which must under state law review and approve the Plan.   Town voters get the final say in March, 2014 when a warrant article will be on the ballot for approval.  A public hearing will be held in advance of the town vote to ensure voters are well informed.

Although the Comprehensive Plan is a pre-requisite to apply for State grants, more importantly it is an opportunity for the residents of Belgrade to guide the future of Town.  What kind of town do we want Belgrade to become?  The Plan lays out four inter-related major goals:  1) protect the quality of the Belgrade Lakes,  2) encourage economic growth and development,  3) conserve and enhance the traditional character of the town’s rural areas and village centers and  4) minimize the future costs of municipal services.  Sections of the plan address agriculture and forestry, historical and cultural resources, land use, the local economy, municipal services, natural resources, recreation facilities and programs, transportation and water resources.  Goals and recommendations have been developed for each and the Plan establishes a set of guidelines for Town government to use over the next 10 years as policies, fiscal decisions and ordinances are addressed by the current folks in local government and those to come.

Belgrade residents are urged to review the draft Comprehensive Plan update and adopt it at the March referendum vote. Copies of the draft plan are available at the Town office and on the Town’s website: www.townofbelgrade.com.

Belgrade Comprehensive Plan Steering Committee

 

 

To obtain a copy of the draft plan is available at the Belgrade Town Office and on the town website:  www.townofbelgrade.com

 

 

Belgrade Comprehensive Plan Steering Committee

 

Note: Many thanks to everyone who participated in the update to the Comprehensive Plan; countless hours of volunteer time was given that encompassed over a year of time.  Without the volunteers we would not have accomplished our goal.  Thank you sincerely!

 

 

 

Belgrade Recreation Department 1 Center Drive Belgrade, Maine 04917 207-495-3481

communitycenter@townofbelgrade.com

 

 Once again, we were very busy hosting fall events for all ages. It is always rewarding to see how many people participate in the activities that the Recreation Department hosts for the community.

 

Join us this winter for:

*Community Lunch at the Center for All Season the first Tuesday of each month and at North Belgrade the third Tuesday of each month. It is a wonderful opportunity to get together, share a nice lunch and good company. Everyone is welcome! Be sure to mark your calendars, CFAS - 12/3, 1/7, 2/4 and 3/4 and NBCC - 12/17, 1/21, 2/18 and 3/18. These are donation run lunches and all forms of donations are deeply appreciated. In case of inclement weather, please contact the Rec. Office.

 

*Saturday, December 7th, marks the 16th Annual Belgrade Lakes Village Holiday Stroll. The Belgrade Center for All Seasons starts the day with its Holiday Fair and Gingerbread House Contest. From 9:00am-3:00pm crafters and vendors will be selling their unique products. At 10:00am, our 2nd Gingerbread House Contest will kickoff. You may bring a house made at home or make it here using one of the Recreation Dept. gingerbread house kits. Prizes will be awarded; judging begins at 2:00pm. There is a $10 per house entry fee.

*What could be more exciting than having Santa Claus visits the Belgrade Center for All Seasons on Santa Movie Night? Add model train displays to make it even more thrilling for children and adults!!

 

 Friday, December 13th from 6:00 – 8:00pm, families are invited to sit with Santa and tell him what they want for Christmas, watch a movie big screen style and visit the spellbinding model train displays provided by the Great Falls Model Railroad Club and the Maine 3-Railers Club.

*This winter, the Rec. Dept. is coordinating reduced ski or snowboard days at Sugarloaf or Saddleback. This could be up to a 50% reduction in lift tickets! A minimum of 20 people are needed to receive this savings. Contact the Rec Office if you are interested. We need to have this in place by December 18th, so please do not hesitate to take advantage of this great deal!

 

*January 25th (snow date Jan. 26th), we will be hosting an Indoor Yard Sale at the Center. This is a great opportunity for you to make room in your home after the Holidays and give others a chance to purchase your treasures. Contact us if you would like a spot.

 

*February 7th (snow date February 8th), is our annual Father Daughter Dance. It is such a magical evening for dads and their daughters.

*The Center is excited to start Pickleball! What is Pickleball? Pickleball is similar to tennis and is enjoyed by all ages. Starting January 7th, we will be offering Pickleball Tuesday evenings from 5:30 – 7:00. Come join the fun!

 

If there is a class you would like to see offered or one you would like to teach please contact us.

The Belgrade Center for All Seasons continues to offer many daily programs for all ages; check our December calendar.

 

Best wishes to you and yours,

 

Valencia Schubert

Recreation Director - Town of Belgrade

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                         

Belgrade Public Library

124 Depot Road

 

(207)495-3508                      www.belgrade.lib.me.us

 

HOURS: Tuesdays and Thursdays 10-7; Wednesdays 2-6; Fridays 10-1

 

There is a mix of old and new at the Library. 

 

Our first new item is a change in hours.  Beginning in November, the Library hours will be 2pm-6pm on Wednesdays instead of 3pm-7pm.  This shift allows greater access for everyone.  Hours on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays will remain the same.

 

Our second new item is a new Library Director.  I am looking forward to serving the community of Belgrade beginning on December 2nd.  With a master’s degree in Library Science and over sixteen years of working in a variety of libraries with a strong emphasis on youth and children’s services, I am still a small town Maine girl at heart.  I am excited to begin a new experience with all of you.  Stop in and say “Hello”.

 

As always new books are being added to our collection.  Check out the new titles on display or search our catalog online at the library website.

 

The following programs and events continue throughout the year:

*Story time every Thursday at 10:30am

*Minecraft and Board Games the last Thursday of the month 3pm-6pm

*Book Discussion Group the second Tuesday of the month 6:30pm

 

Don’t forget to check out the library website or our Facebook page (facebook/BelgradePublicLibrary) for more information and updates.

 

Respectfully submitted,

Janet Patterson

Library Director

 

Belgrade Historical Society

 December  2013

 

The Town House Committee, chaired by Dennis Keschl, has completed not only a plan for removing the old water tank; it has actually completed the task.  What remains to be done is closing up the old openings in the floor, re-building the east wall, and stabilizing the rest of the building.  Extensive rot was found in some sills and corner posts.  Repair and stabilization are under way utilizing volunteers and a restoration contractor.

 

The Belgrade Historical Society is also undergoing rejuvenation; BHS alumna Linda McLoon has suggested new ideas regarding officers and programs.  Watch for a mailing about 2014 activities and meetings, and feel free to get involved.  One group is gathering information about the old houses all over town, so if you see them, please help with their survey.  Another group is working on ways to display historic artifacts, pictures and information that will show off Belgrade’s timeline of history.  The Historical Society has been recently approved for a grant that will assist with the protection of town artifacts.

 

The Lawrence Sturtevant Collection will be featured in our first display, planned to be in place by town meeting day.

 

Friends of the Belgrade Public Library

 

The Friends are celebrating a very exciting milestone this year on December 18th; the Belgrade Public Library will have been opened for one year! It has been a year of many challenges for the Friends. First of all being a landlord and all that goes with that has been a new experience and second of all fundraising to pay all of the expenses that we promised the Town we would do and succeeding in doing that is very rewarding for us. We have to continue fundraising and having annual appeals so that we can pay for these expenses.

 

Fundraising Events for 2014

  1. A Book Sale, Saturday February 22nd 9:00-2:00 p.m. at Belgrade Central School
  2. A Book Signing with Earl Smith for his new book “More Dam Trouble” on Sunday, April 6th at 2:00 p.m. at the Community Center.
  3. Basket Bingo with the Belgrade Fire Department, Friday, April 11th doors open at 5:00 p.m. at Belgrade Central School
  4. Yard Sale, Saturday June 14th 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Day’s Real Estate in Belgrade Lakes.
  5. A Book Sale and Homemade Pies for sale on Friday, July 4th from 9:00-2:00 p.m. Belgrade Lakes Village
  6. A Golf Tournament, Thursday, July 10th at the Belgrade Lakes Golf Course
  7. 5K Road Race, Saturday, July 26th 8:00 a.m. at Belgrade Central School
  8. A concert will be coming at a future date, stay tuned.

 

We had a wonderful coloring contest for youngsters this year at the Oktoberfest and will do that again in 2014 along with a table at the Christmas Craft Fair selling handmade items. We have Cats Meow replicas of the Belgrade Public Library that we are also selling as a fundraiser.

We will not have a regular meeting in December; our next regular meeting will be held on Wednesday, January 15th, 2014. We welcome new members and you may contact the Friends at the address below for a membership form. Check our website pages at www.friendsobelgradepubliclibrary.org, or our face book page, Friends of the Belgrade Public Library for updated information on the Friends activities. Please come and join us in all of our “fun” fundraising. We would like to thank all of our sponsors, donors, members and volunteers for a successful 2013!

 

Your tax deductible donations for maintenance would be gratefully appreciated: checks may be made out to Friends of the Belgrade Public Library and mailed to P.O. Box 474, Belgrade, ME

 

SPIRIT OF AMERICA

2013 Nomination

 

Once again the Town will participate in the Spirit of America Tribute, please take the time to fill out and submit your nomination for someone who exemplifies the individual qualities of this award.

  

The Spirit of America Tribute

The Spirit of America Foundation is a public charity that was established in

 

Augusta, Maine, to encourage and promote volunteerism.  Its recognition

 

program has spread through more than twenty-six cities and towns in Maine.

 

The Spirit of America Foundation Tribute historically is presented to honor local

 

Individual(s), organization (s) and /or projects for community service.

 

The award recognizes individuals and organizations in appreciation of exemplary

 

community service.

 

This nomination is for service to community

 

 

PLEASE SUBMITT YOUR NOMINATION TO THE TOWN OFFICE

 Due by February 28, 2014

 

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

Town of Belgrade

 

Spirit of America Tribute

Nomination Form

 

Nominee Name:  _______________________________________________________

 

 

Nomination made by:  __________________________________________________

 

 

Date:  ________________________________________________________________

 

Reason for the nomination:  ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

You may drop this form off at the Belgrade Town Office or mail it to 6 Manchester Road, Belgrade, ME  04917

Update from the Belgrade Regional Conservation Alliance (BRCA)

 

This has been a record breaking year for Courtesy Boat Inspections to stop the spread of invasive plants in the Belgrade Lakes Watershed.  Thanks to the hard work of our Courtesy Boat Inspectors (both paid and volunteer), 12,939 inspections were done this summer at seven public boat launches and two private launches in the watershed.  Fragments of variable milfoil (an invasive aquatic plant) were found during four separate inspections (3 coming out of Messalonskee at the Sidney boat launch, and 1 coming out of Messalonskee at the Oakland boat launch).  Prevention is the key to winning the battle against invasive aquatic plants (and is much more cost-effective than removing plants once they are established)!  Belgrade has helped fund the Courtesy Boat Inspection (CBI) program for over 10 years and BRCA is requesting the town’s continued financial support in 2014.

 

This was the second summer of a big effort by BRCA and Belgrade Lakes Association’s STOP Milfoil Campaign.  In 2013, 28,939 gallons of milfoil were removed from Great Meadow Stream and Great Pond.  Although there is still variable milfoil in the stream and the lake, the volume is decreasing and we are making headway.  The most important piece of this effort is to keep it going to prevent the spread of milfoil to other parts of the lake.  Thanks to our summer survey crew and Adopt-A-Shoreline volunteers, no new infestations were found on Great Pond or on Long Pond this summer! 

 

The other big milfoil removal effort in our Watershed took place on Belgrade Stream and MessalonskeeLake.  These efforts focused on containing the current infestation (so it doesn’t spread to other water bodies), and restoring habitat for the endangered Black Tern.  Thanks to the support of a grant from the State of Maine, and a grant from the US Fish & Wildlife Service, 9,700 gallons of variable milfoil were removed from Belgrade Stream and Messalonskee Lake this summer.  BRCA will continue Belgrade Stream and Messalonskee Lake milfoil removal efforts in 2014 and, for the first time, BRCA is requesting funds from the Town of Belgrade for this work (and to match our grant from US Fish & Wildlife). 

 

The BRCA Youth Conservation Corps had another productive year in 2013.  Thanks to the financial support from the Town of Belgrade, we were able to improve the health of our lakes by installing “best management practices” (BMPs) like stone riprap and plant buffers on lake shore properties.  BMPs reduce erosion and phosphorus from getting into a lake which, in turn, improves water quality and helps to reduce algae blooms.  This past summer, the Conservation Corps completed 106 projects on 44 properties in the Belgrade Lakes Watershed.  This brings the total from the past 18 years to over 950 projects! Belgrade has helped fund the Youth Conservation Corps (YCC)for over 10 years and BRCA is requesting the town’s continued financial support in 2014.

 

These efforts take money and BRCA funding is provided by watershed towns, private landowners, businesses, lake associations, foundations, and state and federal grants.  This collaborative funding illustrates the broad support for water quality improvement and invasive plant prevention in the Belgrade Lakes watershed.  This collaboration is a key reason why BRCA is able to get foundation and government grants for our watershed and is another reason why we say:

 

Thanks to the Town of Belgrade for your support!

 

BELGRADE LAKES ASSOCIATION

STOP MILFOIL PROGRESS REPORT

 

The Belgrade Lakes Association, working in partnership with the Belgrade Regional Conservation Alliance, is waging a battle with variable milfoil on Great Pond.  With two full seasons of work now completed, the fight is a long way from over, but good progress can be reported on all fronts.

 

First, a little background information; Variable milfoil is an invasive aquatic weed that has no natural enemies and can literally destroy a lake.  It can grow up to an inch a day, in water up to 20’ deep and forms thick mats at the surface which make swimming and boating all but impossible.  Great Pond is very vulnerable because so much of the lake is less than 20’ deep.  And the problem could spill right over into Long Pond.

 

So what’s being done about it?  For the last two summers a very aggressive field action plan has been implemented.  Professional divers have been pulling up the milfoil and a local team has also removed plants and surveyed both lakes for new outbreaks.  This last summer 30,000 gallons of invasive milfoil were removed and no new infestations were found.  That’s very good news.

 

An “Adopt-A-Shoreline” program was also launched this year.  121 individuals in 17 road associations were trained to identify invasive milfoil and “adopted” 11 miles of Great Pond and Long Pond shoreline to check for new outbreaks.  This program will be expanded next year.  If you are interested in joining its ranks please call BRCA Milfoil Program Director Toni Pied at 207 215-2685.

 

While it only grows in lakes and streams, variable milfoil is in reality a major threat to the whole community.  Yes, it will reduce the property values of lakeshore camps, but that just means a greater percentage of the tax burden will fall on non-lake front properties.  A lake overrun with milfoil will also be less attractive to prospective property buyers, renters and vacationers.  Local businesses will suffer.  In short, the whole local economy will be undermined.

 

What’s the plan for 2014?  Next summer will see another very aggressive attack on the milfoil.  The professional divers will be back as will the STOP MILFOIL workers and survey team.   We will build our own DASH boat (Diver Assisted Suction Harvester) to make the milfoil removal much faster, more efficient and more cost effective.  As it has been from the start, our goal will be to reduce the size of the infestation and keep the milfoil from spreading to other parts of Great Pond and into Long Pond.

 

It should come as no surprise that this work is expensive.  Approximately $200,000 was spent both in 2012 and again this past summer.  But that is much less than the cost of trying to deal with the problem if the lakes are overrun with this invasive plant.  The Town of Belgrade has contributed funding from its water quality improvement account the last two years, including $20,000 in 2013.  Almost all the remainder of the funding has come from private donations.

 

This STOP MILFOIL project is seeing success in large part because the community recognizes its importance and has gotten behind it.  In the survey sent to all taxpayers last February as part of the Town of Belgrade Comprehensive Planning process, 85% of the respondents listed the lakes as Belgrade’s most important economic asset and 82% responded that the Town should take more aggressive action to control the milfoil in the Belgrade Lakes.

 

Next March the Town of Belgrade will again be asked to support this critically important milfoil mitigation work on Great Pond.  A $20,000 request for STOP MILFOIL funding will be presented to the voters in the form of a special referendum.   Passage of this special referendum will actually mean a $40,000 contribution to the milfoil fund, as Belgrade’s contribution will be matched 100%, dollar for dollar, by a private state foundation that has pledged up to $150,000 in the way of a matching gift grant.

 

This battle with invasive milfoil is one we can win.  With your support, it’s a battle we will win.  Thanks for your concern, support and vigilance.

 

NEWS FROM THE FIRE DEPARTMENT

 

The Fire Department would like to remind residents to take precautions and make sure your chimneys are clean during this winter heating season.  

 

 Other Holiday and Christmas tree fire safety tips include:

 

• Making sure all exits are accessible, and not blocked by decorations or trees.

• Keep the non-artificial trees watered. Shorts in electrical lights or open flames can easily catch a dry, neglected tree on fire.

• Do not place the tree close to a heat source, including a fireplace or heat vent.

• Never put branches or needles in a fireplace or wood burning stove.

• Inspect holiday lights each year for frayed wires, bare spots, gaps in the insulation, broken or cracked sockets, and excessive kinking or wear before putting them up.

 

* During your travel in winter months please take extra precaution for slippery and snowy road ways

 

 

FOOD PANTRY INFORMATION FOR THE HOLIDAYS

The Belgrade/Rome Special Needs Food Pantry will be open on Monday, December 23rd and Monday, December 30th and not Tuesdays because of the holidays.  Thank you to the many volunteers and donations received from everyone during this holiday season!

 

Lastly in closing, during these winter months please take the time to check in on your elderly neighbors to make sure they are ok and not in need of heat, food or perhaps they  could use some assistance in shoveling out their walkway to prevent slips and falls that occur during the winter months.   Thank you


Have you filled out a

APPLICATION FOR HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION

Title 36 MRSA Sections 681-689

INSTRUCTIONS: Completed forms must be filed with your local assessor by April 1. Forms filed after April 1 of any year will apply to the subsequent year tax assessment. See reverse for additional instructions

SECTION 2

1. Names of all Property Owners (names on your tax bill):_______________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________________

2. Physical location of Homestead property (i.e. 14 Maple St.):____________________________________

 

City/Town_____________________________________ Telephone #:___________________________

3. Mailing Address, if different from above:___________________________________________________

City/Town____________________________________State______________________Zip__________

 

I (we) hereby declare, aware of penalties for perjury, that the answers to the above are, to the best of my/our knowledge and belief, true, correct and complete. A person who knowingly files false information for the purpose of obtaining a homestead exemption is guilty of a criminal offense.

Signature of Homestead Owner(s) ____________________________________ Date: __________________

_____________________________________ Date:__________________

 

SECTION 1: CHECK 􀀻 ALL THAT APPLY

YES NO

A. I am a legal resident of the State of Maine 􀂉 􀂉

B. I have owned homestead property in Maine for at least the past 12 months. 􀂉 􀂉

(1) If you owned a homestead in another municipality within the past 12

months, state the municipality where located:________________________________________

 

C. I declare this homestead is my permanent place of residence and the 􀂉 􀂉

only property for which I have claimed a homestead exemption.

(Summer camps, vacation homes and 2nd residences do not qualify)

IF YOU HAVE NOT ANSWERED YES TO ALL QUESTIONS, STOP HERE

You must meet all three of these requirements to qualify for a homestead

exemption under the terms of the homestead exemption statute

 

SECTION 3: CLAIM OF RESIDENCY IN THE MUNICIPALITY IS BASED ON ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING:

YES NO N/A

􀂙 I am a registered voter in the municipality. 􀂉 􀂉 􀂉

􀂙 I pay Motor Vehicle Excise Tax in the municipality. 􀂉 􀂉 􀂉

􀂙 The place of legal residence on my resident fishing 􀂉 􀂉 􀂉

and/or hunting license is the same as the above

homestead address.

􀂙 The address on my driver’s license is the same as 􀂉 􀂉 􀂉

the above address.

 

(If you answer “No” to any question, please explain on a separate sheet. N/A means Not Applicable)


TRANSFER STATION NEWS

 

Congratulations to the students of Belgrade Central School that took part of the recently established recycling education program.

 

Recently, The Town of Belgrade Transfer Station and Recycling Committee, along with the joint efforts of the students and teachers of Belgrade Central School, held a Recycling Poster contest. A representative from the committee met with the students on October 10th for a recycling awareness session. After they were informed of the contest, the students were very eager to put forth the effort to create the posters. The posters were collected and judged and on November 14th, representatives from the committee along with the Town Manager, presented ribbons to the winners and held a pizza party for their efforts. The contest was a great success and we hope to continue it annually. Remember, it has to start with the children. The more Belgrade recycles, the less Belgrade spends on disposal fees.

 

 

Robert Vigue

Transfer Station Manager

Town of Belgrade

 

 


 

                                                           


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                  

 

 

 

 

 

 

        

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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