December 15, 2022

Town of Scarborough Newsletter

No heaps of snow yet, but plenty of generosity and holiday cheer throughout our community! Take note of some ways you can give back this season, from Project GRACE's Giving Tree, PD's "Pack the Pantries", to a blood drive with the Red Cross, and CLYNK bag donations for our fuel assistance program. We also share some winter weather reminders and fun programs happening in the new year. Grab the eggnog and read on for details...

Delayed Opening on Wednesday, December 21: Town Hall will be closed from 8:00am-1:00pm for mandatory staff training.


Deck the Halls...Town Hall, that is!🎄 Come see the festive look when you stop in for your dog license, CLYNK bags, registering a vehicle, or attending a Town Council meeting.

Holiday Schedule & Safety Reminders

Trash Pickup During the Holidays

Town offices will be closed on Monday, December 26 and Monday, January 2 for the Christmas and New Years holidays. Trash collection will remain on schedule; there will be no changes to curbside collection throughout the holiday weeks.

Sign up for CodeRED Alerts

As we head into the winter storm season, one way to prepare is signing up for our Town's CodeRED computer alert system. It is used to quickly notify large groups of people for emergency situations like criminal activity, severe weather, road closures, evacuations, and missing persons. It's free and secure to sign up for cell phone alerts. Select how to receive alerts: text, phone call and/or email. Help us keep you informed and safe by signing up for CodeRED.


Support Community Fuel Assistance with CLYNK Bags

With the winter season upon us, it is now a critical time for our Fuel Assistance Program, a decade-long partnership between the Town of Scarborough and Project GRACE to provide fuel to community members in need.

Do some good with the returnables from your holiday party! Pick up a CLYNK bag in our Town Clerk's office for your can and bottle returns, and your donation will go directly to funds for the program. With your help, the CLYNK bags from the Town of Scarborough offer year round support to the fuel program. Thank you for your contribution to helping our community!

Assessing Team Supports Senior Stabilization Program

The application period for the first year of the State’s new Senior Property Tax Stabilization Program, which started back on August 8th, officially concluded on December 1st.  Over the past four months, the Town of Scarborough’s Assessing office has received and processed a total of 1,850 eligible applications. This number notably exceeded prior estimates for the anticipated level of participation and is a testament to the excellent town-wide effort for getting the word out to help eligible seniors sign up to receive the associated “tax freeze” benefit in the next tax year. We are thrilled to know so many Scarborough residents are now poised to take advantage of this new program. It is additionally reassuring for all taxpayers to know that the way the stabilization program’s law (LD 290) was enacted, there is no adverse effect on the Town’s overall budget, as the State plans to reimburse 100% of the impacted tax revenues (amount above stabilized taxes) to municipalities. 

"As Scarborough’s Assessor, it is an honor to extend my sincere appreciation and well-deserved admiration for my fellow Assessing staff members (Sue, Erika, and Marianne) for their dedicated hard work that made the administration of this program possible," says Nick Cloutier, Town Assessor. "Despite the daunting challenge of balancing the significantly increased workload for this program on top of their normal duties, they all rose to the occasion to provide exemplary customer service to our Scarborough residents to ensure everyone who was eligible was thoughtfully guided and assisted through the process. Great work and thank you all, very much!"

Assessing staff, left to right: Nick Cloutier (Town Assessor), Marianne Cellucci (Administrative Assistant), Sue Russo (Deputy Town Assessor), Erika Fennell (Administrative Assistant)

As stated to applicants in the Assessing office, this stabilization program will have an annual re-application or renewal requirement. Maine Revenue Services has not yet explained the specific details nor timing of next year’s deadlines. However, eligible seniors should rest assured that the Scarborough Assessing office will make sure that all those details are clearly relayed and widely publicized as soon as we know more.  


Seeking Town Representative for Jetport Noise Advisory Committee

The Portland Jetport has a Noise Advisory Committee (NAC) to address the impacts of noise from aircraft operations on neighborhoods surrounding the Jetport. The 12-member committee is representative of local jurisdictions, and both residential and business concerns. The Town of Scarborough is seeking a new representative to join the committee.

The NAC meets semi-annually and has the following responsibilities:

• Review noise abatement projects

• Provide input for the implementation of the current Portland International Jetport Noise Compatibility Plan

• Develop ideas and recommend proposals for consideration in future airport noise plans

• Participate on advisory committees involved in long-range airport facilities and capital improvement planning

• Promote citizen understanding of airport noise issues

If you would like to learn more about this opportunity or join the committee, please contact and include a letter of interest.

Register/Renew Your Dog License before January 31st

It's time to register/renew your dog license for 2023! Register or renew your dog license in person or online. Come into the Town Clerk's Office at Town Hall during our business hours, Monday through Friday from 8:00am-4:00pm (first and third Wednesday until 6:00pm). Licenses are $6 (spayed/neutered) and are valid through December 31, 2023.

All dog renewals must be completed by January 31, 2023. There is an additional $25 fee starting February 1st.

Save Time, Renew Your Dog License Online

Register or renew your dog license online through the State of Maine website. If you register your dog[s] online, you will receive your tag[s] at the beginning of the next month.


Why license my dog? Dog licensing is a Maine state law and ensures rabies vaccination, which protects the health of your pet. Additionally, by licensing your dog you are directly fighting animal cruelty and abuse. Up to 90% of dog license fees go directly to the Maine Animal Welfare Program. Dog license fees account for 95% of the State Animal Welfare Program’s entire funding and without these fees, the State would be unable to protect the animals of this state.

Expanded Role for Longtime Employee Tody Justice

Tody Justice, who has been the Scarborough Town Clerk since 1994, has recently taken on an expanded role in the town. In addition to seeing Tody in the Clerk's office, she will now also serve as the Assistant to the Town Manager. Tody's institutional knowledge and crossover working with the Town Manager and Town Council as Town Clerk make her an effective and invaluable resource to the Town in this expanded role.

Tody first started working for the town in 1990 as part of the Scarborough School Department. "It is an honor to serve the community," she says, indicative of her over three decades with the Town. Outside of work, Tody loves spending time with her family and spoiling her 6 grandchildren. She enjoys quilting, hiking, and baking. She and her husband own a working beef farm in Gorham, which has been in the family for over 50 years and keeps her busy.

End of Year Message from Scarborough Police Chief

It's been one year since Scarborough Police Chief Mark Holmquist joined the department last December. During his first year, the department has been very active with many internal changes, combined with the day to day challenges our officers face in our community.

Chief Holmquist commends the ongoing hard work and dedication of the officers, dispatchers, and support staff, citing the 2021 Community Survey which indicated an overall approval rating of ninety-three percent for the Police Department. "I receive positive feedback on a weekly basis from citizens, business owners and visitors who want to highlight the outstanding service our department provides for them. Our dispatchers, officers and support staff take the extra time needed to pay attention to the small details that mean so much to people who contact our department. This quality is engrained within the fabric of our department and it is something I am very proud to share when I have the opportunity."

"I am so proud to serve our community as Police Chief alongside the talented professionals we have at every level throughout our organization."

Chief Holmquist identifies some of the major challenges within the department this year as well. One was responding to the needs of our unhoused population in several encampments along the Payne Road corridor and local hotels, noting that this is an issue affecting many communities in the State of Maine. "In Scarborough, we have partnered with stakeholders involved with this complex issue to establish a plan going forward to better serve the unhoused population. Our department has worked with Town Manager and the Town Council to provide updated information on a routine basis, so they can make informed decisions regarding the best plan of action for this issue." Chief Holmquist also notes the impactful role of our Social Services Navigator, Lauren Dembski-Martin. "Lauren has devoted a great deal of time and resources in providing various alternatives to unhoused individuals and families so they can take positive steps forward."

A few other departmental challenges in 2022 were recruiting for new dispatchers and officers, as well as the loss of a few within the ranks of retired and active members. "We will never forget their service to our community and the positive contributions they made for our department."

"As I begin my second year as Police Chief, I am confident our team can continue to overcome any challenges we face through our dedication to duty, expertise and persistence. I am proud to serve with this outstanding team in a community who provides unwavering support for their public safety teams. Our goal will continue to be to provide outstanding public safety services to everyone who lives, works or visits the Town of Scarborough."


December 17: "Pack the Pantries" with Scarborough PD

Scarborough Police Department is teaming up with Project GRACE and two neighboring public safety departments to support our community! This Tri-Town Food Drive will be hosted at Scarborough Public Safety this Saturday, December 17 from 9:00-11:00am. Stop by with nonperishable foods or cash (or checks payable to the South Portland Food Cupboard). Donations will collectively benefit the South Portland Food Cupboard, Judy's Pantry in Cape Elizabeth, and the Scarborough Food Pantry.


December 17: Laying Wreaths for Veterans

Saturday, December 17, Noon

Scarborough Memorial & Dunstan Cemeteries

The Scarborough Police Department is assisting Scarborough locals Bill and Anne Gallant with their Wreaths Across America efforts in Scarborough. This Saturday, they along with 73 volunteers will lay wreaths on the headstones of 247 veterans at Scarborough Memorial Cemetery and Dunstan Cemetery. For the first time, these cemeteries are official locations for the 2022 National Wreaths Across America Day and are part of the over 3,100 participating locations across the country. All wreaths were donated and will ensure that the individuals who served to protect the freedoms of our country never be forgotten and to bring the community together in patriotic commemoration.

Winter Activities with Community Services

Give the Gift of Experiences with Two Upcoming Events

Family Magic Show

Thursday, December 29, 10:30-11:15am

Community Services Hub (418 Payne Road)

$20 per family

Be dazzled by magic with your family during December school break! Phil Smith of Abracadabra Productions is four entertainers in one... a magician, comedian, juggler, and a mentalist! Coins will melt into thin air, solid objects will pass right through each other, and there may even be a surprise guest who does a card trick! Tickets are sold by the family for $20 each and may be purchased at the Hub or by calling us at 207-730-4150.

Interested in learning HOW to do the magic? Sign up your Ages 5-12 student for the Magic Workshop ahead of the show!

Boston Celtics vs. Brooklyn Nets Trip

Friday, March 3, 7:30 pm game

Bus departs at 4:00pm; returns ~12:30am

$170 per person ($160/person if buying 4+)

Join Scarborough Community Services on a Coach bus to TD Garden to see the Celtics take on the Brooklyn Nets! Package price includes ticket in Balcony 324, Coach bus transportation to Boston and back, and driver gratuity. Extra savings for families of 4+.

Bonus! The first 15 children (ages 7-14)

registered for the trip will be eligible to be an Anthem Buddy, allowing them to stand on the court near the teams during the National

Anthem! Please ask about availability at time of purchase.


Returning this Winter: Friday Night S'mores Socials

Fridays, January 13, 27, and February 10

6:00 to 7:30pm

Municipal Ice Rink

Save the dates for these winter evening socials! Grab your skates and meet us at the Municipal Ice Rink (near Wentworth School) for an evening of skating, music, and free hot cocoa and s’mores. No ice? No problem! If the ice is not safe for skating we will move the hot cocoa and s’mores to the Hub for some indoor play.


Winter Programs for All Ages

Check out all the upcoming programs for our 55+, Adult, Teen, Youth programs and Special Events in our 2022-23 Winter Programs brochure. View it online or pick up a printed copy at the Hub (418 Payne Road) or Public Library.


Scarborough Community Services is located at the Hub, 418 Payne Road. They also offer services like passport renewal and child care.

Sand for Seniors

Scarborough senior citizens in need of sand for their driveways and sidewalks can have a bucket of sand delivered FREE to their residence. Please call Officer Tanner Mann at (207) 730-4328 or email your request to Please be sure to leave your name, telephone number, and address.

December 30: Fire Department Hosts Blood Drive

Friday, December 30


Public Safety Building

Scarborough Fire Department is hosting a blood drive in honor of Madison, the niece of one of our firefighters who was diagnosed with leukemia last year at just 10 months old. If it wasn’t for generous blood and platelet donors, Madison would not be winning her battle against leukemia. We hope you can support with a blood donation to help those in need. Only a few spots remaining, sign up here.

Council Corner: Unified & Strategic School Facility Solution

By Jon Anderson, Town Council Chair

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Scarborough Town Council.

Our current primary schools have outlived their useful lives. Not only are we beyond capacity for the students we currently serve at our three primary schools and middle school, but we won’t be prepared to support the COVID baby boom coming in a few years. Across our school facilities, we have 30 portables serving the needs of our students. This is simply unacceptable and embarrassing. Our schools are nearly 60 years old, and weren’t designed to support the type of programming required to educate our students in the 21st century. We can do better. We must do better. 

On November 18th, the School Building Committee had their second workshop with the Town Council to learn more about the progress of their strategic solution to address our school facility needs. The recommended solution approved by the School Board prior to COVID was a unified solution on a new site, rather than renovating our three existing primary schools. The justification is based on the cost effectiveness and operational efficiencies of a unified school, the operational challenge of multi-year renovations (e.g. where do the children go when a building is being renovated?), and that the current sites are too small to expand to meet the demands and future needs of our community. The solution currently being proposed by the School Building Committee will unify the three existing primary schools into one school and move 3rd grade from Wentworth to the new K-3 school. Wentworth will go from serving grades 3-5 to grades 4-6, and the Middle School will serve grades 7-8, removing the need to house the entire 6th grade class in portables as they do currently. 

The site, design and cost of the new unified school is currently in process. Site selection is targeted to be announced in early 2023, with the design and cost to follow and be incorporated into our 2024 budget process. The construction cost estimate for a unified school solution is currently estimated in a range from $117 to $152M. The School Building Committee is endeavoring to provide all the information needed for a November 2023 referendum vote. It is important that the community take the time to get informed and involved as the solution is developed. Other local communities recently rejected school projects because the community did not think the solution was justified or met the need. The Building Committee needs your help to ensure the solution appropriately meets Scarborough’s needs, because the space crisis is already here and will only continue to deteriorate, and building will only become more expensive the longer this solution is delayed. 

What questions or concerns do you have? The Committee, the Town Council, and the Board of Education want to hear from you: It just feels too big—how can you build a school that large for kindergartners and make it feel small? This sounds like more traffic—where is the site and what will be done to manage traffic flow? Can we afford this, how much will it cost to build and maintain and what will that mean for my taxes? I love my community school—what will happen to the three existing primary school sites to continue the community feel? Money is tight and we just voted no on a Library expansion—how are we already asking for a new school? The community asked for a community center with a pool—how could that fit into this project? These are all fair questions to ask, and questions that must be answered in the coming months.  

There are many ways you can get more informed and involved:

1. Learn more at the website

2. Follow the project on Facebook at “Scarborough Public Schools New School Building Project”

3. Attend a School Building Committee Meeting and share your input or listen

4. Email the School Building Committee at 

5. Join a subcommittee for the School Building Committee - a new finance subcommittee is being established.

6. Email the Town Council ( and School Board ( with your questions and concerns

7. Attend or watch a future Town Council/School Board Workshop on the Project

8. Read future articles in the Leader on this project

This is going to be the largest investment our community will likely ever see. It’s important everyone takes the time to learn, so when the time comes you can make an informed vote if this is the appropriate solution for you and for Scarborough.


Scarborough Town Council

Jonathan Anderson, Chair • Jean-Marie Caterina • John Cloutier • Don Hamill • Nick McGee • Karin Shupe • April Sither

Town Council meets the first and third Wednesday of each month. Visit our online calendar for links to attend and view agendas.

School Building Committee Seeking Members

Scarborough Public Schools is seeking interested community members to join the New Primary School Building Project committee. There are two openings on the full building committee and additional openings for a new finance subcommittee being formed. SPS is seeking community members with expertise to contribute to the planning; i.e. those with MBAs, municipal finance background, tax background, capital finance, general finance, construction finance, etc. 

About the Finance Subcommittee: Assists the building committee in building a complete view of the cost of the project including:

• Operating & Expense Costs (labor, utilities, supplies, etc.)

• Transportation costs

• Capital Cost & Depreciation Schedule

• Disposition of existing assets and any associated write-off’s

• Financial modeling of various scenarios, i.e. transportation, capital, depreciation, impacts to taxes, etc.

• Other financial impacts

Please complete the Committee & Subcommittee Interest Form - Thank you!

Committee & Subcommittee Interest Form


Scarborough Public Library News

Holiday Closures

Warm wishes for the upcoming holidays to all the library users in Scarborough! Please note upcoming holiday hour changes:

Saturday, 12/24-Monday, 12/26: Closed

Tuesday, 12/27: Open at 9:00am

Saturday, 12/31: 9:00am to 5:00pm

Monday, January 2: Closed

Tuesday, January 3: Open at 9:00am

Regular weekly programs for children, youth, and teens, will take a break from Thursday, December 22, 2022 until Tuesday, January 3, 2023. Instead, the library is offering programs for children and youth each day from Tuesday, December 27 through Saturday, December 31. Here's the program roundup.


Monday – 9am to 5pm • Tuesday – 9am to 7pm • Wednesday – 9am to 7pm • Thursday – 9am to 7pm • Friday – 9am to 5pm • Saturday – 9am to 5pm • Sunday – Closed

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