Wednesday, February 27, 2019

ATTENTION LISBON!!!!!!!!!!! by Larry Fillmore



Wednesday, February 27, 2019



There is an epidemic sweeping across our country affecting the lives of millions of Americans; this is the opioid crisis. Opioids affect the lives of everyone in our country. It is important Lisbon does everything it can to prevent this crisis from affecting our community.

It is a parent’s responsibility to protect their families. One way to protect our families is to rid our homes of expired or unused medications before it gets into the hands of our children or other unauthorized individuals. By cleaning out our houses, we are eliminating the possibility of our kids using unauthorized medications.

If we can get all the expired and unused medication from our homes, it will help immensely to reduce the possibility of the opioid crisis in Lisbon. Having the parents’ dispose of expired or unused medication will help to protect our community. It is vital that each parent act responsible and do everything they can to protect their children from getting their hands on expired or unused medication.

Residents of Lisbon are very fortunate because there is an easy, no questions asked, method to dispose of these expired or unused medications. The Lisbon Police Department has a green container located in the lobby of the police station. This is available 24/7 365 days a year for your convenience. There is no interaction necessary between residents and the police. There is a dispatcher available if you have questions or concerns. I recommend taking the label with the individuals name off before turning in these expired or unused medications to ensure no names are revealed. The following is accepted:

The following items are accepted:
· Prescriptions
· Prescription Patches
· Prescription Medications
· Prescription Ointments
· Over the counter medications
· Vitamins
· Samples
· Medications for pets
The following items are not accepted:
· Needles and other sharps
· Aerosol cans
· Inhalers
· Hydrogen Peroxide
· Thermometers
· Medications from Businesses or Clinics

Please do not flush the medication down the toilet because this pollutes the ground water in our community. I understand years ago that this was the way people disposed of medication but we have learned the effects of doing this. This method of disposal is extremely harmful to our community. Again, please do not flush medications down the toilet.

It is imperative every parent in Lisbon do their part to protect their families and our community.
There is no reason for individuals to take expired or unused medication in Lisbon because residents have a centrally located easy to use drop-off point at the Lisbon Police Department entrance. 

Help our community, by emptying our homes of expired or unused medication.

Larry Fillmore

Thursday, February 21, 2019

PROPOSED CHARTER CHANGE? --- by Larry Fillmore


During Tuesday night’s Town Council meeting, February 19, 2019, the Council voted unanimously on the timeline to the proposed Charter change. For the past five (5) or six (6) years, I have been opposed to making Charter changes because I believe it only weakens our Charter and provides an advantage to those in power to gain more power.

Upon reading the proposed changes this year, I originally thought this was an excellent idea because it saved the taxpayers money and resolved some issues such as:


(1) We now have a consolidated voting place which eliminated the confusion of where an individual was required to go to vote.

(2) It eliminates the need for two different ballots; one for those residing in District 1 and one for those residing in District 2.

(3) Eliminating two ballots would reduce the cost of printing.

On the surface, these are all excellent reasons for approving this year’s Charter changes. But in the process, the Town Council is eliminating the guarantee that both ends of town have a representative on the Town Council. To me, this is critical to preserving the integrity of our community and far out weights the cost savings. I believe the individuals who prepared our Charter had this in mind when they created our Charter and we should never change it.

This proposed change could very easily tip the scales on the Town Council to favor one end of town or the other. It is easy to say Councilors will treat each end of town the same but human nature has shown this not to be true.


Things which look good in the beginning are not always what they appear and I believe this is the case here. I would encourage everyone to weigh both sides of the issue and vote their feelings. I am voting NO to this proposal because I believe it is vital that both ends of town have a true representation on our Town Council.

Please contact both your Councilors and our Town Manager and express your point of view.

Larry Fillmore

Friday, February 8, 2019

ANOTHER MUNIS UPDATE by Larry Fillmore

I have put together a chart of the anticipated dates for
 the conversion of MUNIS from TRIO to be completed.
  The Chart
 MUNIS SCHEDULE

MODULES                   COMPLETION DATE

1.        Accounting/General Ledger/
           Accounts Payable                                                October 1, 2018
2.        Cash Management                                             October 1, 2018
3.        Project & Grant Accounting                    October 1, 2018
4.        Purchase Orders                                                 October 1, 2018
5.        Accounts Receivable                                          October 1, 2018
6.        General Billing                                                     October 1, 2018
7.        Payroll with Employee Self Service                  April 8, 2019
8.        HR Management                                                 April 8, 2019
9.        Animal License                                                     February 1, 2019
10.      Business License                                                  February 1, 2019
11.      Central Property File with the CAMA Bridge  TO BE ANNOUNCED
12.      Tax Billing                                                              TO BE ANNOUNCED
13.      ME Tax Lien                                                           TO BE ANNOUNCED
14.      Tyler Cashiering                                                    February 1, 2019
15.      Utility Billing                                                          7-8 months
KEEP IN MIND THAT FUTURE DATES ARE ONLY ESTIMATED DATES!!!!!!!!!!!!
The town is paying $79,761.00 tax dollars a year for this software package.  The
 contract started March 1, 2016, so the first nineteen (19) months; the town paid for
 MUNIS and receive absolutely no benefit from it because it was not operational. 
 So this means the town wasted nearly $160,000.00 tax dollars and you wonder 
why taxes continue to go up every year.

Mrs. Lydia Colston, Finance Director, has been tasked to implement this program 
above her normal duties.  It would appear that Eight (8) out of Fifteen (15) modules
 have been completed.  On March 1, 2019, the contract will be three years old and 
we are half way through the implementation.  So far the town has been paying our tax 
dollars for software not yet functional.  I want to make this perfectly clear; 
Mrs. Colston is doing a remarkable job and should be commended at every chance. 
 However, the fact our tax dollars are being wasted because the town is not receiving
 the full benefit of MUNIS in which we are paying for.

Before the town and the taxpayers can receive the full benefit of this package we are
 paying for; it must be completely implemented and fully operational.  MUNIS is 
basically a financial software package.  The taxpayers are paying $79,761.00 per year
 for a software package that does not include the Recreation, Public Works, Fire, 
Police, Water and Sewer Departments.  Each of these departments has their own 
software packages to run their operations. 

Each day that goes by without MUNIS completely implemented and fully operational,
 the town is wasting taxpayers’ dollars.  It is almost guaranteed that the Town
 Manager is going to ask for more increases this year and the Town Council will approve them.  This will raise our taxes again.  

Call you Councilors and the Town Manager and tell them to stop wasting our tax dollars
. Also, tell them to start looking for ways to save tax dollars and reduce our taxes.
Larry Fillmore

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

WASTING TAX DOLLARS by Larry Fillmore




For years now, I have been suggesting the closure of the Lisbon Communication Center and having the Androscoggin County Dispatch take over the responsibility of dispatching Police, Fire, and Emergency Medical. And for years, the Town Council has voted to keep Lisbon Communication Center open.

The cost to operate this facility, in the last budget, was $345,246.00. Now it is a fact that two former Councilors investigated this very issue and found that the town could save approximately $200,000.00 taxpayer dollars a year by having Androscoggin Country Dispatch perform the Lisbon Communication Center functions. To me $200,000.00 is not chicken feed and should have been considered seriously. However, Fern LaRochelle, did not want the town to lose control. 

During the Town Council workshop on January 15, 2019, Chief Hagen presented a proposal to perform dispatching for Gardiner. During the discussion of this Chairman, Norm Albert ask a very important question for Chief Hagan. It was and I am quoting from the minutes of January 15, 2019 minutes: 
“Councilor Albert asked if the state would be forcing Lisbon into dispatch service with them. Chief Hagan said eventually, yes, but probably not within three years. He said eventually the equipment we have will fail and the cost to replace it will be significant. Councilor Albert said the administrative fee should be worth our while.”
This brings up several important questions:

First question: “Why are we waiting for the state, why not do it now when we have an excellent offer from Androscoggin County Dispatch?”

Second question: “Why are we waiting until the equipment fails and puts the town in a crisis?”

Third question: “Why is the town going to pay a very significant amount of tax dollars to replace this equipment when the state is going to force us to join them?”

To me, these are very important questions. They can all be eliminated if the town allowed Androscoggin County to take over dispatching responsibility. It is a fact that by closing the Lisbon Communication Center will save the taxpayer's tax dollars. It is also a fact that it is impossible to tell the exact amount that will be saved, however, any cost saving will help reduce the operating cost of the town and reduce our taxes. Reducing our taxes should be the number one priority of the Town Council and the Town Manager. Unfortunately, they are NOT interested in saving money or reducing taxes.

Call your Councilors and Diane Barnes and tell them it is time to start saving tax dollars and no more tax increases.

Larry Fillmore

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

DO YOU WANT YOUR TAXES TO GO UP AGAIN!!! by Larry Fillmore



Well it is that time of year again. The Town Manager, Diane Barnes, is preparing the town’s annual budget. If she stays true to form, she will ask the Town Council to approve roughly a two million ($2,000,000.00) dollars increase in the operating cost of the town. This will undoubtedly include a Cost-of-Living Allowance (COLA) for all employees of the town.

If you like having your taxes second highest in Androscoggin County, then sit back and do nothing. There is a good chance Lisbon can move into the highest taxed town in the county, passing Lewiston this year. Can you imagine that last year Lisbon passed Auburn? That is just ridiculous!!!

The problem is no one in the town government, Town Council or the Town Manager is interested in cutting the cost of operating the town. Several options to cut cost and reduce our taxes have been suggested and ignored by the Town Council.

Now is the time for the people to speak up and tell both the Town Council and the Town Manager, enough is enough. We want our taxes reduced this year. If the people sit back and do nothing your taxes are going to rise again this year. Can you afford that?

If you do nothing NOW, it will be too late to reverse the decision of the Town Council. Call your Councilors and the Town Manager and tell them to start finding ways to reduce our taxes and no increase in taxes this year.

Larry Fillmore