Well you might want to know what happened at the council meeting last night. Since I was present at the Council meeting last night I thought I will tell you what I saw happen. I feel it is some positive interesting news. There are positive stories in Kittery that happen at the council and this is my side, just the facts. View the stream here or visit Channel 22.
The Town Council last night was interesting to say the least. Although It was not on the agenda and slated for public comment and with the entire councils indulgence, Chairman Jeff Thomson made a spot early on for a spotlight recognition of our own victorious Traip Robo Rangers lead by Teacher Mr. Boudreau.
It started with an impromptu introduction of Mr. Boudreau and the Traip Academy Robo Rangers. Mr. Boudreau gave a brief talk about the accomplishments of the group and the fact that some of the graduating seniors are going onto prestigious colleges like WPI (Worcester Polytech) ad MIT. (See the Council Meeting Here)
As printed in the Portsmouth Herald, Boudreau and volunteers from the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard have worked for the past four years with students entering a separate competition, called FIRST Robotics. This is an after-school activity, and Boudreau offered the robotics class during the school day for those in sports or who had other after-school obligations and couldn’t be part of FIRST Robotics.
The entire class has been built around entering what is called the VEX Robotics competition. VEX Robotics, sponsored by the nonprofit Robotics Education & Competition Foundation, is held at the state, national and international level each year.
The VEX part of the group is trying to raise $6000.00 to be able to get the team out to ANAHIEM California. Mr. Boudreau has had help in the past from Teacher Mr. Dicy.
Since the group needs help and Councilors in the past have donated their $20.00 (per Council Meeting) to various charities so I wanted to issue a challenge. I decided to donate some of my Council pay that I have earned since being elected and to the end of March towards that cause. I issued a challenge to others to either match it or beat it. However, I wish I would have also said they would take any donation. This is what it is about. TEACHING and SUPPORTING our STUDENTS. We could have students who go onto the space program and design lunar landers or robots that do surgeries or other unique professions. There is need to stimulate our students and provide support with staff to incubate these kids.
The students and Mr. Boudreau introduced themselves at the meeting and you can view it on CHANNEL 22. Absent was Teacher Mr. Dicy who once was also was involved with the students. You can view Channel 22 for the schedule of the play back times for this Council meeting. Record it and remember, somewhere in our school system could be the next famous Kittery student.
These programs are cutting edge and we need to cognizant of what is going on behind the scenes and help make a difference. If you would like to donate or make my meager $200.00 donation look bad, so go for it and here is the information.
Tax-deductible contributions in support of the team can be mailed to:
12 Williams Ave.
Kittery, ME 03904
Attn:Joe Boudreau. Checks can be made payable to the Traip Academy VEX Robotics Team.
The School Budget issue
The issue is about adding revenue to the budget to lower it down. Town Council unanimously voted to keep the budget at 1.5 percent or under as agreed to earlier this year. Thomson said. “A budget is built on the spending side of the ledger; it’s a very slippery slope to build it on the revenue side.”
“At this point, I will not vote to move the school budget on in its current state,” he said.
Councilor Jeff brake and myself agreed.
Councilors Russell White and Judy Spiller both said they want to hear the presentation from the School Committee as to why the budget has deviated from the amount requested.
The school committee will be conducting a work shop on Tuesday 3-11-2014 to review the schools budget.
THE BOSTON CANE
I raised an issue brought by up by a local citizen. based on his inquiry, I brought up the information as conveyed to me. As with the citizen, I don’t know who currently holds the Boston Post Cane for Kittery (given to the oldest living resident), but I think the previous holder passed away in December 2012. Her name was Wilma “Doll” I do not know if anyone else has been awarded the “Cane”, but I do know a woman at Kittery Estates named Alice Mayhew who turned 105 on February 8th of
this year who certainly should be recognized.
If she is in line for the Boston Post Cane it would be nice
to recognize her. I believe the Kittery Town Council awarded the cane
to Doll Edwards but I don’t know how it’s determined who is in line for
it. Alice has been at Kittery Estates since around 2009.
After the meeting, I was delightfully informed by the informed (Chairman Thomson) that the cane is symbolic and is in the glass display case in the front atrium of the Town Hall. I am hoping we can move quick on a new recognition.
MAINE may be holding some money for you.
SHOW ME (MAINE) the Money! (click this link)
Due to a request from the State of Maine and a story by the Portsmouth Herald, I made it easier to find out and search for it on OURKITTERY. Over 4008 listings of people, business and groups that have money waiting for them. Some of the hits included, Traip Graduation Classes, Shapleigh Middle School and the Kittery Fire Department. There were some people who checked out OURKITTERY and found they had over 800.00 dollars coming back to them others discovered small amounts. Please check to see if you or your friends have any money coming to them.
Information from Councilor Jeff Brake
The recycling committee wants parents from both the Kittery School System, Home School as well as graduates of the Traip and other citizens looking to advance their education to remember and apply for scholarships. The list of people who can apply for scholarships is on the Town Web Site.
Councilor Brake said you can get your applications here.
Any money helps with Educational Expenses.
He also wants expanded Channel 22 and to see the process speeded up.
Note: Town Manager Nancy Puff has been doing a great job so far getting up to speed, getting things caught up and moving forward. It’s a process and it has to be done right but it can also start making leaps. (Denault).
Information from Jeff Thomson
Chairman Thomson brought up items such as getting more members on the boards. Kittery has many openings and can use some good help. These civic posts are important and need to be filled. He asked to schedule a saturday to interested people could come and learn about what it takes to be on the boards, getting on the boards and the other benefits of serving.
He also brought up an important issue. The summer workers/students working abroad is fast approaching. last year many of these kids were sleeping on benches and had no place to stay. He is trying to get ideas and conversations started so the 40 or more foreign students or workers have a place to stay and have some form of transportation. Many of these kids are happy to use bikes for transportation.
It should be noted, that even after paying rent, food and other amenities, the money these workers/kids return home helps out their entire family and then some. (Click here for a past OPINION in the Portsmouth Herald). Kittery Town Councilor Jeff Thomson is working to make that welcome just a little warmer when students arrive in the area next spring.
Think about it as if one of our students wanted to work overseas. Would you want to know a Foreign Town of Group is taking care of them.
Stay Tuned for more information or contact Jeff Thomson or any councilor from our OURKITTERY page. (click the link)
It is about the trend of less involvement. I wish it was a movie but the book brings interesting things to light. We need more help on Boards and Committees.
Information from Town Manager Nancy Puff.
Debt Limit Calculations
- Snow Removal Budget
- Fema Flood Map Change Status
- Memorial Field
- School Department Budget
- Channel 22 will be broadcasting the school committee meetings now.
- Boards of Appeal vacancy. Member Norm Leon passed.
This post is a synopsis of the meeting and an accurate and detailed accounting can be watched on Channell 22 or Town Hall Streams. Please continue to pass on this website. The more the informed we are the better Kittery can become.