TREMONT — Misunderstandings regarding the use of town property by the Tremont Consolidated School have resulted in a new memorandum of understanding and lease between the town and the school department.
Selectmen on Oct. 16 voted 5-0 to have Town Manager Dana Reed sign the document.
The community building, which is used by the school as a gymnasium and for other functions, the former town office space and some of the land are owned by the town. The new memorandum was drafted to clarify any misconceptions about the school’s lease with the town for use of the property. It replaces an earlier version.
The lease is for a five-year term beginning Oct. 1 of this year. The school agrees to lease the town-owned property at the school for $5,000 annually. The town, according to the document, is to deposit the money in a reserve account for repairs and improvements to the community building.
The community building is used by both the school and by the public. Under the memorandum, the school has the priority for using the community center from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. “when school is in session.” Unless the school has reserved the building in advance, at all other times, the town has priority.
The memorandum also states that the town’s Recreation Board, in cooperation with the school, shall develop standards for using the building and send them on to selectmen for possible approval. In addition, the kitchen in the community center is not to be used by the public.
The school is to pay for all utilities, maintenance and repairs or improvements costing less than $5,000 or as “required as a result of school use.” The town pays for all capital improvements, defined as having an initial cost of $5,000 or more and having a life expectancy of five years or greater.
Selectmen approved the memorandum with no discussion. The school’s principal, Jandrea True, was at the meeting and told selectmen the School Committee had no objections to the wording.
The need for a better memorandum of understanding between the two parties surfaced in September of last year, after selectmen learned that a school playground project and a hiking trail were constructed on town land without seeking the customary permission of selectmen. At that meeting, the board approved a motion to have Reed draft a new document to eliminate any future confusion.