February 15, 2022
Community News
We hope your week started with chocolates and flowers! Our police officers spent Valentine's Day making special deliveries to Scarborough residents who have recently lost a loved one. Caring for our community takes many forms among Town departments. Beyond delivering valentines, our police officers will be collecting donations at the Fuel Rally this weekend (see more below), Public Works hits the ground running with snow removal after storms, our Revenue and Clerk's offices assist with your walk-in needs at Town Hall, and Community Services greets you with a smile (behind their masks!) at the Hub during programs. Read on to learn more about Scarborough's focus toward our community.
This weekend is the 10th Annual Fuel Rally hosted by Project GRACE. It is a curbside event to raise the goal amount of $25,000 to cover heating costs for our neighbors. Drive through on Saturday, February 19 from 10am-noon to make a gift, support the Friends of Scarborough Library book sale, drop off returnables for the Lions Club bottle drive, and more.
What is Project GRACE? Project GRACE is a Scarborough-based nonprofit with a mission of improving the lives of Scarborough neighbors by identifying both those in need and those willing to share their gifts, and coordinating the interchange in a compassionate, confidential manner.
Town News in a Flash
  • Town Hall will be closed Monday, February 21, for Presidents' Day. Trash pickup is on schedule.
  • The next Town Council meeting is this Wednesday, February 16 at 7:00pm (Links to participate/view agenda on calendar). It will be preceded by a workshop on the Downtown TIF at 5:30pm.
  • Spring tax bills were mailed and should arrive soon. Payments are due on March 15 and can be made in-person at Town Hall or online. If you have a billing or payment question, please contact our Tax Collections department at (207) 730-4010. (How was the tax rate determined? Click Here to learn more).
Thank You, Public Works!
Every season is a busy one for Public Works, but winter is especially demanding. Our drivers clear and treat 175 miles of Scarborough roads, one side at a time, multiple times throughout the course of a storm. The vehicle maintenance staff makes sure the plow trucks are ready to go. We are grateful to have them!
February 23: Climate Change Community Meeting
The Town will hold a virtual community meeting on Wednesday, February 23 at 6:00pm on Scarborough’s Climate Change and Resiliency Priorities. Town staff will provide an overview of vulnerable infrastructure, followed by time for participants to suggest additional priorities. Register Here.

The Town has the opportunity to apply for a Community Action Grant to implement projects related to Maine's 2020 Climate Action Plan, "Maine Won't Wait". Public engagement and participation are key parts of the grant process, and we hope to have strong representation from the community. Information gathered during the meeting will be used to inform future funding proposals and Town initiatives. 

Materials will be provided on the Town’s website prior to the meeting. Questions? Contact Scarborough Sustainability Coordinator Jami Fitch at jfitch@scarboroughmaine.org
A Scarborough Public Works truck plows seawater and ice off Route One during a storm on January 17, 2022.
Police Receives Grant from Department of Justice
The Scarborough Police Department was recently awarded a $286,065 grant from the Department of Justice Comprehensive Opioid, Stimulant, and Substance Abuse Site-based Program. This grant funding will be used to support and progress the department’s LEAD program, Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion Program, established in November 2021. The LEAD program was developed as a way to divert individuals to a community-based, harm-reduction intervention for law violations driven by unmet behavioral health needs. LEAD holds considerable promise as a way for law enforcement and prosecutors to help communities respond to public order issues stemming from unaddressed public health and human services needs (i.e. addiction, untreated mental illness, homelessness, and extreme poverty) through a public health framework that reduces reliance on the formal criminal justice system. 
Assessing Department to Conduct Drive-By Inspections
As part of operations, the Assessing Department conducts annual inspections for permitted work or new construction. These will mostly be drive-by inspections but may involve us getting out of the car to walk around the property or measure. For properties that require an interior inspection, adequate contact will be made in advance. We will adhere to current safety and social distancing protocols. We will have our Town IDs and our vehicles will have magnets with our Town logo. If you have any questions, please call our office at (207) 730-4060.
Help Us Keep Our Beach Trash Barrels Useable
We are having frequent trash issues at the beaches lately. There have been large amounts of household trash (e.g. full trash bags that could otherwise be disposed of in Town-provided household trash bins) in the beach trash barrels. This reduces the capacity for typical beach visitors’ trash and pet waste bags. The beach trash barrels are only serviced twice a week during the winter months, so this causes challenges for staff as well as nearby residents and visitors who have to live with the mess until the next trash pickup.

Please refrain from utilizing these barrels as an extension to a household trash bin. If the beach bins are full, please take pet waste bags with you instead of adding them to the overflowing piles. If we all do our part, everyone can enjoy the incredible coastline we are so lucky to call home!
New Community Programs Added
Featured Youth & Teen Programs

Basketball Spring Training (Grades 3-8)
February 28 to March 24
Players will work on ball handling, shooting, rebounding, post moves and defense.

Indoor Soccer (Grades K-3)
March 6 to April 3

Lego Winter Fun (Grades K-4)
Saturday, March 5, 9:00am-Noon
Individual builds may include a menacing polar bear, a snow plow and an igloo.

Mini Gym Class Heroes (Ages 2.5-5)
March 1 to March 22
Each week we will introduce a new game: Floor Hockey, Indoor Soccer, Open Gym (Instructor Led),Jump the Creek, Obstacle Course, Tag

Mini Hits Baseball (Ages 2.5-5)
March 3 to March 24
Little athlete learn the basics of baseball.

Teen Movie Night (Grades 6-8)
Friday, March 18, 6-8pm
All teen nights include a pizza dinner and drinks. For more information or to preregister, email comserv@scarboroughmaine.org.
All youth and adult program details can be found in the Winter/Spring Brochure.
Now Hiring: Summer Camp Counselors
This seasonal position with Scarborough Community Services is a great job for high school students or college students home for the summer. It can be full- or part-time; ages 16+. Gain work experience in child care and education. Click Here to learn more.
Municipal Skating Ponds
Scarborough Community Services maintains two skate ponds open to the public during the winter season at no cost.

20 Municipal Drive (behind the maintenance garage between the turf field and Wentworth School)

Skating Pond Hours
Weekdays, 2:00pm to 9:00pm
Weekends, 8:00am to 9:00pm
Before You Go: Check the Scarborough Community Services Facebook page for daily status updates.
February 25: S'mores Social at the Skating Ponds
Join Community Services for skating to music, free s’mores and hot cocoa, and warming by firepits. The final event is Friday, February 25 from 4:30-7:00pm. The last one was cancelled due to poor ice conditions. If that's the case again, the event will be moved indoors to the Hub (418 Payne Road). Check the Community Services Facebook page beforehand to confirm.
Senior (Age 55+) Programs
Check out these upcoming programs:

Kittery Trading Post Trip: Thursday, February 24, 9am-2:30pm
Coffee with a Cop: Friday, March 4, 9:30am at the Hub, Free (no registration required)
Senior Craft Day: Monday, March 14, 10:00am at the Hub
Brick Store Museum Trip: Thursday, March 24, 9:45am-2:30pm

Prices vary; Find details and registration links online. View the digital brochure or pick up a paper copy at the Community Services Hub (418 Payne Road) or Scarborough Public Library.
Scarborough School Board Extends GRATITUDE
In addition to recognizing the constant hard work of our excellent teachers, we also want to give a shoutout to everyone behind the scenes:

To our nursing staff who have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to provide support for our students. They have managed all of the testing, completed reports for the district and state, conducted contact tracing including sending email messages and calling parents with unpleasant news, they’ve fielded questions, and supported our students and teachers at every turn. We appreciate you!
To our Janitors who have taken on all of the extra cleaning and sanitizing between cohorts, adjusting seating in the classrooms to support social distancing, ensuring we have safe and healthy environments for our children and staff. They accomplished this in addition to the regularly scheduled cleaning and responsibilities they already had. We appreciate you!

To our bus department staff who have had the extra labor of ensuring students are following mask requirements and socially distancing when possible and thoroughly cleaning the bus between student pickups. Our bus department head has had the added responsibility of reviewing bus videos for the sake of close contact tracing, which is above and beyond her already taxing role of maximizing route efficiencies. We appreciate you!

To our Kitchen staff who have worked tirelessly to ensure every child in the district had access to nutritious and delicious meals while they were learning at home and in transitioning safely back into the cafeteria. We appreciate you!

Scarborough Public Schools is incredibly fortunate to have our behind the scenes heroes—you have made all the difference in our ability to safely open our doors! There are truly not enough words to express our gratitude.

The School Board
Be on the lookout for additional gratitude statements from the Board.
Tax Increment Financing: What is it?
Ahead of the upcoming Town Council meeting on Wednesday, February 16, council will host a 5:30pm workshop on the Downtown TIF. What is a TIF, anyway?

Tax Increment Financing, or TIF, is a finance tool used by municipalities to leverage property taxes on new developments in a specified district to allocate to designated project areas. Any portion of the new taxes generated in the area may be used to finance the project(s) for a term up to 30 years.

Scarborough uses TIFs as a means of maximizing potential from new growth and development in town. TIF districts are currently established in three areas of town for economic development, and two for affordable housing. The most recently established district is the Downtown TIF. The Council workshop on February 16 will be a public hearing on proposed amendments (View agenda & links to join).
Find helpful resources, like a video presentation/slides titled "DemysTIFying Tax Increment Financing 101" on our website.
Karen Martin, Executive Director of Scarborough Economic Development Corporation (SEDCO), wrote an article about TIFs in a recent Scarborough Leader titled “Scarborough Council Makes Strategic Use of TIF Tools”. Click Here to read the article.
The Town Council held a goal-setting workshop on January 19 to discuss their priorities for the year ahead. Read the message below from the Town Council Chair about how they organized their goals to frame their work for 2022.
Council Corner: Making a More Complete Scarborough
By John Cloutier, Chair
“If you aim for nothing, you’ll hit it every time…” So we should probably pick a target. The Scarborough Town Council has been deliberating on the areas of focus for the coming year. Getting 7 Councilors to align on any topic can be a challenge, but we all agreed on a number of topics. The most prominent goal relates to reinvigorating the Community Center discussion and continuing to partner with the Board of Education on their facility needs.

Our focus really centers around making Scarborough more complete. We have a beautiful Municipal Campus and Library that is a source of pride. Our Commercial Center at Oak Hill is Scarborough’s home for retail, a mix of restaurants and other small commercial businesses. The rest of our Downtown, which includes the entire Scarborough Downs property, is just starting to take shape. How this area develops is critically important.
We envision anchoring the central part of The Downs, also referred to as our Town Center, with publicly funded civic space that will include an area for Community Services and a pool. The Down’s team has been receptive to our involvement in the core of their project and have invested to articulate the vision for Scarborough’s future Town Center. Much more to come on this, but you can refer to the Town Council February 9 Workshop for what lies ahead.

We have a history of allowing our neighborhoods to develop with their own unique character and identity. This phase on our development journey is no different. We want to enable The Downs to be a successful neighborhood. A desirable place to live, work and play. A place that will help Scarborough to become a more complete community. Will this mean more people in Scarborough? Most definitely… one of them could be a family member or friend just entering the workforce who now has a place in Scarborough that they can call home; or your child’s teacher who no longer needs to commute from three towns away to work here; or a police officer/firefighter/medic who puts themselves on the line every day to make this world a better place… our housing stock will become more affordable, leading to a more complete Scarborough.

We have no intention of placing a major metropolis in the middle of Scarborough. We would, however, like to create a space that is vibrant, welcoming and replicates some of that warmth, vitality, and purpose that you feel when visiting iconic destinations. A place with people. A place to make connections. A place to eat, recreate, swim, gather, shop. A more complete Scarborough.

We adopted several more specific fiscal health and sustainability targets this year. A minimal Mil rate increase is no longer enough. We want to reign in spending, contain our debt and optimize the opportunities provided by the State to maximize the funds returned to Scarborough taxpayers. These strategies, along with utilizing the Community Center as a stimulus for economic development, will allow us to offset the cost of construction by 50-60% with subsidy from the State. A fiscally responsible way to realize a more complete Scarborough.

We will also update and modernize our impact fees to ensure that fees assessed to new developments are utilized to mitigate the various impacts that those developments have on our infrastructure. By directing almost all new development into a few central areas of town, we can protect our existing neighborhoods while ensuring that new development will be self-sustaining. The pace of residential growth will be greatly reduced for the majority of Scarborough, but accelerated in our central areas.

Finally, we will work to fully leverage the Community Survey work that was completed last year (results here) and to finalize any Charter revisions to be placed on the November 2022 ballot (from recommendations by the Ad Hoc Charter Review Committee in 2021 - info here). It’s going to be an exciting year in Scarborough and I encourage you to engage and be an active participant in making Scarborough a more complete community.
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.
Want to share your thoughts? Councilors can be contacted via email at towncouncil@scarboroughmaine.org.
Scarborough Town Council
John Cloutier, Chair • Ken Johnson, Vice Chair • Jonathan Anderson • Jean-Marie Caterina • Don Hamill • Paul Johnson • April Sither

Town Council meets the first and third Wednesday of each month. Visit our online calendar for links to attend and view agendas.
Scarborough Public Library
Virtual Community Read Kickoff
Launches Tuesday, February 15, 7:00pm
Concludes Tuesday, April 12
A Community Read is a large-scale book club, spanning an entire community and cultivating a local culture of reading and conversation by bringing people together around a common book. Scarborough Public Library will be collaborating with the South Portland and Thomas Memorial Library on a three-town Community Read this winter, running from February through April.

The Read starts and concludes with an author talk on Zoom. All Community Read programs are free to attend and open to the public. Click Here to register. Register once to receive links to all related Community Read programming.
This year’s Community Read book is One Day: The Extraordinary Story of an Ordinary 24 Hours in America by Gene Weingarten. On New Year’s Day 2013, two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Gene Weingarten asked three strangers to, literally, pluck a day, month, and year from a hat. That day—chosen completely at random—turned out to be Sunday, December 28, 1986, by any conventional measure a most ordinary day. Weingarten spent the next six years proving that there is no such thing. One Day asks and answers the question of whether there is even such a thing as “ordinary” when we are talking about how we all lurch and stumble our way through the daily, daunting challenge of being human.

Note: People are just becoming inspired to read the book; most individuals who participate in the kickoff will not have read it yet.
Climate Change Program
"Climate Change—Awful Realities & Hopeful Solutions" (Zoom)
Thursday, February 24, 6:30-8:30pm

Scarborough's David Kunhardt, a former solar energy executive who has been a volunteer with Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL) and the Climate Reality Project since 2013, will share images of and facts about the climate crisis around the globe, then lead a discussion on the most effective and fair solutions that we can undertake as a nation, as local communities, and as individuals. This is the third program in the Library’s #SustainableScarborough Series. Free to attend, open to the public. Learn more and register to receive the Zoom link.
Library Hours
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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