Bridgton Selectmen tidbits

By Lisa Williams Ackley
Staff Writer

Last week, Bridgton Town Manager Mitch Berkowitz told the selectmen he would meet with Paul Fillebrown of United Ambulance Service to discuss subsidies paid to the town, as the ambulance service had recently agreed to cover part of the town of Harrison.

Berkowitz said, at that time, that he wanted to revisit the contract and subsidy amounts with United Ambulance officials, as to “what consideration” they are giving Bridgton, now that they have expanded their service into Harrison.

The town manager offered an apology to Fillebrown and his associates, at the Sept. 28 selectmen’s meeting, saying he had a recent brief discussion with Fillebrown and United Ambulance Executive Director Paul Gosselin.

“They were kind enough to remind me that in late 2009, we had preliminary discussions about United’s efforts to expand their calls for services outside of the Bridgton contract area with intentions of tracking the number of calls over the first year and determining what revenues are generated,” said Berkowitz. “From this data, they intended on working with the Town of Bridgton to assure our Board and residents that the additional revenues would then allow United to further adjust the Bridgton subsidy,” Berkowitz explained. “I had completely forgotten about those preliminary discussions in late 2009 and the fact that this was an excellent opportunity for them to pursue the possible expansion of their revenue base which could enable them and the Town of Bridgton to make further subsidy adjustments. In light of this information, which I had forgotten, I must apologize to United Ambulance for my oversight. We will have some of these discussions during the 2012 budget development period which will be reported to the selectmen promptly.”

Chairman Art Triglione told the town manager he would like the selectmen to be provided with the number of calls for service in Bridgton handled by United Ambulance Service.

Bridgton Economic Development Committee appointments postponed

The selectmen unanimously voted in favor of postponing the appointment of members to the Bridgton Economic Development Committee until their Oct. 26 meeting, so a previous legal opinion from Atty. Richard Spencer could be clarified regarding the potential for conflict of interest, in case a person appointed to the EDC also serves on another board, such as the planning board.

“Perception is everything,” Selectman Earl Cash said, in making his motion to postpone the appointments until later in the month, in order to clarify the lawyer’s opinion as to what legally constitutes a conflict of interest.

“I’m not doing this to head hunt on anybody or pick on anybody,” Cash stated.

No selectmen’s meeting Oct. 12

As they held a special meeting on Oct. 5, the selectmen will not meet on Oct. 12. Their next meeting is scheduled for Oct. 26 at 6 p.m. at the Bridgton Municipal Complex.

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