Community Newsletter

Issue #332

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In this Issue:

Upcoming City Council Meetings

Tuesday, April 11 at 6:30 PM - City Council Workshop (hybrid)
Tuesday, April 18 at 6:30 PM - City Council Meeting (hybrid)

See the City Calendar for all scheduled City Council and board meetings + locations/links to participate. All agendas and packet material can be found on BoardDocs. This material will be posted by 4:30 PM on Friday the week prior to the scheduled meeting. See summaries of past Council meetings here.

Upcoming Budget Meetings & Votes

April 11 at 6:30 PM - First budget workshop. Members of the public have up to 3 minutes to address the Council after each allotted slot. View the agenda here. The schedule is as follows:
  • 6:30 - 6:45 PM Overview
  • 6:45 - 7:00 PM Finance & Assessing
  • 7:00 - 7:30 PM Human Resources, Employee Benefits, Social Services/General Assistance/Health
  • 7:30 - 7:45 PM Planning
  • 7:45 - 8:15 PM Fire, Police, PRC (Dispatch)
  • 8:15 - 8:45 PM IT, SPCTV
  • 8:45 - 9:00 PM City Council, City Manager, City Clerk, Legal, Contingency/Reserves, Liability Insurance, Debt Service, County Tax
  • 9:45 - 10:00 PM Review/Confirm "Parking Lot" Items

April 25, May 9 (tentative) and May 23, 2023 at 6:30 PM - Additional budget information will be discussed. The public has up to 3 minutes each to comment at these meetings.

May 16, 2023 - City Council will vote on the final School budget.

June 13, 2023 - Voters (you!) decide fate of School budget at this June referendum. Absentee ballots may now be requested by calling the City Clerk’s office at (207) 767-3201. All voting will take place at the South Portland Community Center. This polling place will be open from 7 AM - 8 PM.

June 20, 2023 - City Council gives final approval to the City portion of the budget.

New City Logo

The City of South Portland has a fresh look with a brand new logo! A Discovery Team of residents from across South Portland worked with City staff and designers to bring forward the logo, which City Council approved in February. Be on the look out for the new logo around town as we celebrate the City's 125th anniversary! Read the full press release here, and visit https://www.southportland.org/happy125th for a list of events.

Electrify Everything: The RECHARGE

South Portland residents can get rebates for the purchase of electric vehicles, electric lawn care equipment, e-bikes, heating and cooling systems, and home weatherization. Now with the recharge of Electrify Everything effective April 1, greater rebates are available on e-bikes and electric mowers. String trimmers and more battery electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles now qualify for rebates! Learn more and apply at: southportland.org/electrify

Learn more.

News from Public Works

Here are some updates from the Department of Public Works!
  • Cottage Road Project - Visit https://www.southportland.org/cottageroad2023 to get updates about the Cottage Road Project.
  • Street Sweeping - Street sweeping has begun. There will not be a published schedule, since the DPW will jump around to accommodate for issues like curbside trash collection. When possible, the department will aim to give notice about neighborhood street sweeping a day in advance on their Facebook page.
  • Changes to School Zone signage - The City is making changes to school zone signage to meet Maine DOT standards. The updates will make for safer pedestrian conditions in school zones and enable the City to qualify for state funding for additional equipment, including flashing pedestrian crossing beacons. These changes will also enable police to better enforce speed limits in school zones. Here are some of the changes planned for this spring:
    • New School Zone signs (potentially flashing) will be installed on Wythburn Rd. to service Skillin Elementary School and the back entrance of the new South Portland Middle School.
    • Flashing School Zone signs on Broadway near Hill St. and 833 Broadway will be relocated to South Kelsey St. to service Kaler Elementary School.
    • New Flashing School Zone signs will be installed on Highland Ave. to service the High School.
    • New Flashing School Zone signs will be installed on Thompson St. to service Small School.
    • Flashing School Zone signs on Broadway near Broadway Gardens and Calvary Cemetery will be removed to comply with state school zone requirements.
    • Flashing School Zone signs at Westbrook St. and lower Coach Rd. and Westbrook St. across from Fillmore Ave. will be removed to comply with state school zone requirements.
Questions? Reach out to Public Works at publicworks@southportland.org or 767-7635.

Swap Shop & New Electric Tool Library Coming Soon!

The City’s popular Swap Shop—a community space for dropping off and adopting gently used items—will reopen at the Transfer Station this Spring/Summer. A brand new Electric Tool Library will open alongside it, where you can borrow electric lawn mowers, weed whackers, and more to use at your home or business. Follow us on Facebook for the opening date announcement, or call 347-4148 with questions.

News from Parks, Recreation & Waterfront

Here are some updates from the Department of Public Works!
  • Spring/Summer Brochure - The Spring/Summer 2023 brochure is now available! Registration for South Portland residents opened today. Check out the brochure here, or pick up your copy at the Community Center.
  • Beach Wheelchairs Available at Willard Beach - Two beach wheelchairs, specially designed to make the beach accessible to anyone who may need assistance navigating the soft sand, are available at Willard Beach. They're available year round, but require advance notice during the off season. Please contact Patrick McArdle to coordinate your next visit: pmcardle@southportland.org
  • New Playground Coming to School Street - A new play structure is being installed on the playground on School Street in Ferry Village! The City is asking parents and caregivers to please help kiddos stay out of the playground area until the new play structure is installed. Come mid-May, it will be playtime at the brand new playground!

Upcoming Events

Call 767-7635 or email publicworks@southportland.org with questions.

View more Library events below.

Contact Det. David Stailing with questions at 799-5511 ext. 7454.

Learn more about this event here and view more Library events below.

2022 Annual Report

The City of South Portland Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2022 is now available online! Read the full report, including updates from each department, at: bit.ly/SoPoAnnualReport_22. Printed copies will be available by request at the City Clerk's office.

Work With Us!

The City is currently accepting applications for several openings, including the following positions:
  • Seasonal Grounds Maintainer - The duties for this position will involve all aspects of seasonal landscaping work, such as planting and removing bulbs, weeding, pruning, mulching, raking and other landscaping tasks...read more.
  • Seasonal Park Ranger/ Conservation Steward - Hiring for Seasonal Park Rangers to patrol recreational and natural areas to encourage proper and appropriate use of park property, promote compliance with rules and regulations, protect park resources and enhance visitor experience...read more.
Play an important role in the everyday lives of South Portland kids by helping them get to and from school safely. Apply now to be a crossing guard! The City, Police Department, School Department, and families across the city thank you for considering!
Reach out to Officer Rocco Navarro for more info and to apply at rnavarro@southportland.org.

Coming Up at the Library

  • Weds., April 12 at 6:30 PM: Introduction to Birding. Join Sydney Raftery from Parks, Recreation & Waterfront and learn all about the great hobby of Birding.
  • Tues., April 18 at 10:30 AM: Where Does It Go? Storytime! Susan from the Sustainability department will help us celebrate an early Earth Day by learning how to protect the Earth! Ages 3-7.
  • Weds., April 19 at 11 AM: Pancakes & PJs Party! Wear your favorite PJs and enjoy stories, crafts, and pancakes! Open to all ages.
  • Tues., April 25 at 6:30 PM: Accessory Dwelling Unit Informational Session. We will be joined by the South Portland Planning Department who will give a presentation and answer questions about ADUs (see flyer above).
  • Sat., April 29 at 2 PM: Author Talk with Jeri Theirault. Local author Jeri Theriault will be joined by a group of South Portland High School students to read their own poems in celebration of National Poetry Month.
The Friends of the South Portland Public Library

Did you know that support from the Friends of the South Portland Public Library provides funding for nearly all library programs and allows the library to enhance its service offerings?

The Friends generates funds to support the library through memberships and sales in the Friends BookShop, located on the lower level of the Main Library. If you would like to help the Friends help our library, please visit the Friends BookShop, where you’re sure to find a bargain, or become a member of the Friends! Find out more at: https://southportlandlibrary.com/friends
  • Mon., April 10 - Regular Meeting: Monday, April 10, 2023
  • Weds., May 10 - SPHS Career Fair - email Sheree Inman at inmansh@spsdme.org or call 767-3266 to get involved.
  • Thurs., May 18 - SPHS Hiring Fair
Some events are subject to change. Check spsd.org for up-to-date information.

Conservation Corner

Submitted by Barbara Dee, Chair of the Conservation Commission
Hello, my name is Shara Dee and I'm very happy to serve as the City of South Portland's Communications Officer!

I'd love to hear your feedback on our newsletter and other City communications, so feel free to send me a note any time at news@southportland.org.
The City of South Portland Community E-Newsletter includes information about City sponsored events, projects, and special announcements from South Portland's non-profit community. It is a compilation of the best available information at the time of publication. Events are subject to change without notice in the time between publication of this e-newsletter and the actual event. To send information to be considered for inclusion into this newsletter, send to news@southportland.org.
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