Sandown Selectmen Pick New School Board Representative

By Alex Malm

The Sandown Board of Selectmen were tasked with picking a new representative for the Timberlane Regional School District School Board during their Nov. 7 meeting.
The opening came after Steve Finnegan announced his immediate resignation from the School Board.
“The rigors of being a school board member as well as the school board chair took a toll on me. Negotiating many contracts along with running school board meetings every couple of weeks did not allow me to spend the amount of time with my family as I want to and they deserve,” Finnegan wrote in an email to members of the community. “This was not a decision that I take lightly and one that has and will continue to impact me. Timing is not ideal, however, I felt it was necessary for me to focus my efforts on my family. Thank you to everyone that supported me over the last almost two years on the board. I greatly appreciate it.”
After receiving the email, Selectmen, Eric Olsen, said they immediately put out a notice looking for a new representative.
He said they received three letters of interest with one of the candidates not being registered to vote until Election Day.
“One is from a former member of the School Board, Shelia Lowes,” said Olsen
The Board unanimously approved naming Lowes to the School Board for the remainder of the term.
Also during the meeting, the Board of Selectmen reviewed a number of proposed budgets for Boards and Commissions.
For the Planning Board, Administrative Assistant, Colleen Olsen, said the main change was cutting the engineering consultant fee in half.
She explained they had funds allocated for it before to help rewrite their subdivision regulations, however, she has been working on it throughout the year.
“We cut that cost,” said Colleen Olsen.
The Selectmen approved sending the net budget of $24,284 to the Budget Committee for their consideration.
Colleen Olsen said for the Zoning Board, the only change was the increase for payroll of 5%.
One question asked was on advertisements, and whether or not they needed the full amount of $1,200 in the budget this year. It was pointed out they have spent less than $300 for that budget line item so far this year.
Colleen Olsen stated that unlike the Planning Board, the Zoning Board has a statutory requirement to post ads in newspapers, which is why she wanted to keep the line item where it is. They are hopeful that the RSA will be changed and that the line item would be even less.
The Board of Selectmen approved sending the net budget of $883 to the Budget Committee for their consideration.
Colleen Olsen also presented the proposed Conservation Commission budget, which was a net of 9,307.
She explained the only major change was cutting the advertisement budget, noting they have no statutory requirement to post them in the newspaper.
The Board of Selectmen approved, sending the proposed budget to the Budget Committee.