m-topbrunjointmtg-013009 Topsham, Brunswick officials plan cost-saving meeting
TOPSHAM — The Board of Selectmen and Brunswick Town Council plan to meet at the Topsham Municipal Building at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 4, to discuss cost-saving ideas.
The two bodies may also be sharing more than ideas. The Board of Selectmen voted unanimously Jan. 22 to instruct Town Manager Jim Ashe and his staff to establish lease agreement language with their Brunswick counterparts concerning Topsham renting meeting space to Brunswick. The language must go before the Board of Selectmen for review.
Ashe said Brunswick is looking for space with broadcasting capability for its council and Planning Board to meet, possibly through Labor Day. Topsham fits the bill, and he said the town is looking at charging Brunswick a maximum of $1,000 to rent the space.
Brunswick must move out of its current meeting space, at the town's old high school, by March 6 because the building is being torn down.
Brunswick cable TV personnel would use Topsham's equipment as the two towns work around each other's meetings.
"The reality is, would this be an inconvenience to us?," Ashe told the Board of Selectmen. "Yes, of course it is. ... Is that inconvenience worth not being a good neighbor?"
Ashe added that the arrangement would supply Topsham with added revenue at a crucial time.
"I just think there's nothing wrong, and everything right, in trying to be a good neighbor," Selectman Michelle Derr. "We might want a good neighbor someday."