Maine Service Fellows Advisory Committee

The members convened at 4:00 pm using the virtual meeting technology. 

PRESENT: Celeste Branham, Tom Judge, Betsy Fitzgerald, Jennifer Christian, Maryalice Crofton

Celeste explained that Jake was on vacation and Maggie Lyn had sent a message that the same was true for her.

Celeste reported on the disposition of LD143 to fund Service Fellows. It passed, went to Appropriations and was held over to second session. Maryalice noted there is an application to USDA Rural Development to fund a position and it has passed review at the state level. Commission staff are waiting to hear from DC what the final decision is. This would make 3 funded positions.

Sam Gilbert began service at Sipayik on July 17. The Millinocket position is still in search of a candidate interested in that kind of project (economic development, planning, land use). Tom Judge asked for info on the position so he can share it with all the airport-related groups in his network. Maryalice explained the USDA funding supports planning for infrastructure in rural areas so those monies would cover Millinocket. There is a call out for Letters of Intent from western counties that would match the final set of funds in hand.

There is a call out to regional and local organizations, inviting submission of letters of intent. Committee members asked if there was information specific to local sponsors available – something different than the recruitment messages. Maryalice pointed everyone to the sponsor page on which includes the LOI and sponsor application forms. (Direct link is Committee members were asked to look through the information and suggest improvements.

Background check policy for candidates. Jake had sent a draft background check policy with the meeting agenda. It incorporated discussion from the last meeting. Committee members reviewed the policy and supported it as it is written.

Policy as it pertains to reimbursement for events held by MSF. The draft circulated with the meeting materials was reviewed. The consensus of members is that it needs clarification. Celeste will work on the draft to sort out the issues and have it ready for the next meeting. 

Evaluate the process through which letters of intent are reviewed. There was no process outline available, so this was held over for the next meeting.

NEXT MEETING: August 15, 2023 at 4:00 pm

Carried over: review of reimbursement policy, review of process for considering letters of intent, feedback on web information for potential community sponsors/hosts. Other to be added. 

There being no other business, the members dispersed at 4:33 pm