Community Newsletter

Issue #309

This City of South Portland Community E-Newsletter includes information about City sponsored events, projects and special announcements from South Portland's non-profit community.    Sign up if you would like to receive the newsletter directly to your inbox. Having difficulty viewing the newsletter?  The newsletter and archives are posted on the City's website here.   Please report broken links to news@southportland.org.

Trash & Recycling Bus Schedules Parks & Recreation Programs Pay Taxes and Bills Online Online Services
What does the Board do?
Maine state law charges school boards with the responsibility to "manage the schools." This is done essentially by selecting and working with a Superintendent of Schools and providing him/her/them with authority and direction. It is not the duty of the Board to operate the schools but to see that they are well operated. The Board primarily discusses and decides district-wide school policies and budgets. 
The South Portland Board of Education consists of seven members, one from each of the five voting districts and two members elected at large. Members are elected in a city-wide election, to serve three-year terms. Two high school students are elected in May of each year to serve a one-year term as non-voting representatives.
No school board member can be an employee or contractor of the South Portland School District, nor can their spouse.
Doing the Job:
1) Regular school board meetings are once a month, almost always on the second Monday. They average 60-90 minutes long.
2) School board members are also encouraged to join a school board committee, which are currently these: Finance, Policy, Buildings and Grounds, Middle School Planning. Average about 1-2 hours per month. 
3) There are usually 3-5 special school board workshops per year on various topics, including the schoolwide budget. These are up to 2 hours each. 
4) There also are occasional special meetings (not more than an hour, usually). For example, these have been called to discuss/approve plans about safe learning related to the pandemic. Another example is when a board quorum vote is required related to collective bargaining agreements (an issue of employment). 
5) There also are opportunities, of course, for board members to participate in the welcoming of teachers and administrators at the start of the school year, the high school graduation, intercultural celebrations, and more. 
Submit your Resume
Board of Health Seeking Residents to serve on the Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) Advisory Board

The City of South Portland's Board of Health is excited to announce we are developing a city-wide community health needs assessment (CHNA). We are looking for 10 South Portland residents to sit on an Advisory Board that will help guide the assessment process. We hope the Board will represent a diverse range of perspectives and lived experiences. Young people are encouraged to apply.
Applicants should be:

1. A resident of South Portland (ideally, each of the City’s 5 Districts will be represented by at least 1 Advisory Board member) 
2. Able to commit to three (3) meetings (60-90 minutes each) between May-December 2022 (dates/times TBD).

The first meeting will be held via Zoom, with an option for subsequent meetings to be held in-person. If meetings are held in-person, childcare can be provided and transportation costs can be reimbursed.
All Advisory Board members will receive a $25 stipend per meeting ($75 total).
Applications will be accepted through Friday, April 15, 2022. Please click the link below to fill out the Application by answering a few short questions:
If you have questions, please contact Madison MacLean (madison_maclean@jsi.com)
Municipal Budget Information
The Fiscal Year 2023 Public Budget Hearing will be held on April 5, 2022 at 6:30pm via Zoom during the regular City Council meeting. Please click here for information on the proposed FY23 Budget and a schedule of upcoming budget meetings and workshops:  Read More
Happy Birthday, City of South Portland!  Known as the "Town of South Portland" by Act of the Legislature dated March 15 1895, in late 1898, what is now Cape Elizabeth annexed itself (keeping the historical name of the town), and the City of South Portland was established by Charter.  On March 13, 1899, the City of South Portland held its first Inauguration as the City of South Portland

The City's first Clerk, Noah B. Knight, recorded in the official Town Record book: "Inauguration of City Government of the City of South Portland March 13th A.D. 1899.    In accordance with the requirements of the City Charter, the Mayor and Aldermen elect met at the City Offices, March 13th A.D. 1899. at 7:30PM for the purpose of affecting an organization of the City Government."  
Conservation Corner
Submitted by Barbara Dee, Conservation Commission
  • Harvesting and using peat in your garden contributes to climate change
  • Peat bogs are the world’s largest natural carbon store 
  • Peat bogs store 30% of land-based carbon
  • Using peat is non-sustainable
  • Using peat destroys the unique ecology of peat bogs
What can you do?
The AARP Tax Aide Program is accepting appointments. Please call (207) 518-8579 to schedule an appointment.
Applications MUST be RECEIVED by May 1, 2022. If you have any questions or need assistance completing the application, please contact Vicki Inman at 767-7609. Click here to download the application and view the FAQs. 
Read More
A number of property tax exemptions are available for those who qualify, including the Homestead Exemption.
Click here for more information and to ensure you are receiving all available exemptions. 
Read more

Events & Event Permits
As warmer weather approaches, the City would like to remind residents and groups planning an event taking place on City property of the need to submit an Event Application. The application can be obtained at the City Clerk's office and needs to be completed and returned to the Clerks' office at least 30 days prior to the event date. 
Read More

Short Term Residential Rentals & Registration
Short-Term Rentals (defined as hosted or non-hosted temporary rentals of less than 30 days) are required to be registered through the City Clerk's office. Non-Hosted Short-Term rentals are prohibited in residential zoning districts. Click here to read more and to apply to register your Short Term Rental online. Read More
The State Primary and School Budget Validation Referendum will occur on Tuesday, June 14, 2022. You can request your absentee ballot starting March 14. Voters looking to change party enrollment must do so by May 27. Click here for more important dates and election information! Read More
The City Council is seeking people to serve on a number of city committees. There is a committee for everyone's interest!  If you are interested in applying, please click here for more information: https://www.southportland.org/our-city/board-and-committees/ 

Apply Now
The new Transfer Station permit stickers have arrived for 2022! Get yours at Municipal Services or City Hall by providing two forms of proof of residency (preferably your driver's license and vehicle's registration). See below for additional info:

New Residential stickers are orange and are valid until 12/31/23. Limit 2 per residence (the first one is free; the second is $5.)

New this year, property owners who do not reside in South Portland but are permitted to use the Transfer Facility for disposing of yard waste (no other use is permitted) from their South Portland properties will have their own (brown) sticker. Property owners must obtain a sticker by showing two forms of proof of property ownership, as well as your vehicle registration. 2022 Property owner stickers are valid until December 31, 2023.

Landscape contractors may use our facility for disposal of landscape debris (leaves, grass clippings and brush) from South Portland residential properties. A Contractor's permit must be obtained for an annual fee of $150. (Additional permits cost $20 per vehicle.) Contractors must show proof that the material they are disposing of is from a South Portland resident by providing the resident’s permit number. 2020 Stickers (blue) will expire on December 31, 2021. 2022 Landscape Contractor stickers (green) are now available from Municipal Services or City Hall, and are valid until December 31, 2022.
The Opportunity Alliance Seeks Senior Companion and Foster Grandparent Volunteers
Qualifying Volunteers Receive a Stipend

Portland, ME – The Opportunity Alliance is searching for new volunteers, age 55 and older, to become Foster Grandparent and Senior Companion volunteers in Cumberland and York counties.

Senior Companions volunteer with housebound elders and isolated adults who need help to maintain their independence. They may provide transportation to doctor’s appointments or other essential errands and can offer companionship through weekly visits.
Foster Grandparents serve as tutors and mentors to young people in schools, Head Starts, and child development centers. Volunteers read with children, support their academic learning and social development, and help teachers by giving each child the time and attention they need.

“Senior Companions and Foster Grandparents provide an important resource to their communities by supporting the needs of children and isolated adults,” said Sonya Thibeau, Director of the Senior Volunteers Program at The Opportunity Alliance. “Senior Companions help housebound elders age in place by helping them to live independently in their homes or providing needed respite for caregivers. Foster Grandparents guide children on a path to success by supporting their academic learning and social development.”
Qualified applicants volunteering at least 10 hours per week receive a tax-free stipend, travel and meal reimbursements, and other benefits including monthly training. All benefits are tax-free and do not affect social security, SSI/SSDI, subsidized housing, food stamps, LIHEAP, or other programs.
To learn more about the Senior Companions program, visit
opportunityalliance.org/senior-companion-program. To learn more about the Foster Grandparents program, visit opportunityalliance.org/foster-grandparent-program. You can also call 207-773-0202 or email fgp@opportunityalliance.org.

About The Opportunity Alliance Senior Volunteer Programs
The Foster Grandparent and Senior Companion programs are national programs funded by AmeriCorps and sponsored locally by The Opportunity Alliance in York and Cumberland counties. Since 1974, Senior Companions have provided assistance to older adults who have difficulties with tasks of daily living that help them remain living independently. Founded in 1965, Foster Grandparents provide emotional and educational support to children in the classroom.
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