Caribou has a new mayor following a Tuesday meeting.
The Caribou City Council named Courtney Boma mayor in a 5-2 vote. Boma replaces councilor Jody Smith in the role.
As is tradition with the first meeting of a new year, the council welcomed board members elected in November and made several appointments. Boma won re-election and new councilors Tamara Lovewell and Jennifer Kelley officially started their positions.
Caribou City Clerk Danielle Brissette administered the oath of office, and all three were officially sworn in.
The council’s first task was to choose a mayor and deputy mayor by ballot vote. Joan Theriault was elected deputy mayor 4 to 3.
Consideration of the year’s priorities topped discussion. City Manager Penny Thompson suggested community development, economic development, public safety and blight as among top priorities. She asked councilors to review the topics and select their two top priorities.
“What’s missing is a lineup by the council as a body,” Councilor Dan Bagley said. “I think it should come to a vote by the body, so it’s the body speaking and not the individual councilors.”
Boma asked councilors to email her and Thompson with their priorities for council consideration.
The group briefly debated the year’s meeting schedule and whether to hold one or two meetings per month.
Theriault said there were times when councilors could have done necessary business in one meeting rather than two short ones. Councilor John Morrill countered that sometimes business is delayed for a month if there’s only one meeting.
“There’s a lot of business we’ve pushed aside and I don’t want to see that happen again,” he said. “When other issues come up, I think they should be addressed as soon as possible.”
The council decided to continue meeting the second and fourth Mondays through March, until the budget process is completed, and revisit a once-per-month schedule in April.
As per the city charter, city officials were also appointed for the year, including Penny Thompson, city manager; Carl Grant, treasurer and tax collector; Danielle Brissette, clerk, registrar of voters and general assistance overseer; Felch and Company LLC, auditor; Solman & Hunter and Bernstein Shur, legal officers; and Brian Lajoie, health officer.
Kristina Drinkall was appointed deputy city clerk and Holli Doody as deputy treasurer.
The board approved other appointments, including three-year terms as follows: Romeo Parent, Board of Assessors; David Belyea, Caribou Utilities District; Michael Gahagan, Clara Collins and Meagan Thompson, Cary Board of Directors; Louella Willey, Gail Hagelstein and Dana Jones, Library Board of Trustees; Robert Carlson, Nylander Museum Board of Trustees; and Margaret Pierce, Zoning Board of Appeals.
Daniel Amero was appointed to a five-year term on the Caribou Housing Authority Board of Commissioners.
Councilors appointed these three-year terms: Douglas Schramm, Airport Advisory Board; Lydia Kieffer-Till and Jacob Beaupre, Caribou Development Committee; Christina Kane-Gibson, Caribou Riverfront Development Committee; Matthew Holabird, Caribou Hospital District Board of Trustees; Eric Hitchcock and Steve Wentworth, Caribou Planning Board; and Holabird and Eric Jepson, recreation commission.
Ken Murchison and John Morrill, with Thompson as alternate, will serve one-year terms on the Aroostook Waste Solutions Board of Directors.
The next meeting will be at 6 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 8.