Norway offers temporary help for waste management facility cash flow issues, potential budget shortfall

NORWAY – With Norway Paris Solid Waste facing a cash flow problem and a potential budget shortfall, the Select Board agreed on Thursday to bring the installation forward by two months of funding.

However, sending the December payment with the money due in November comes with strings attached.

On the recommendation of City Manager Dennis Lajoie, the Board agreed to require NPSW to meet monthly with the Norway and Paris Select Council Chairs, the two City Managers and a member of the NPSW Board of Directors to review its financial conditions.

The group is expected to meet monthly to discuss operational issues where the two cities could potentially assist NPSW, discuss the audit process, and review future cash flow issues and budget shortfalls and come up with strategies to resolve the situation.

The board unanimously agreed to the advance payment and the stipulation.

The waste management facility has seen its recycling revenue plummet in recent months as additional fees and transportation costs have increased dramatically.

The establishment had asked the two cities to provide an additional $10,000 for the next nine months to get through the fiscal year that ends June 30, 2023. Paris had offered to contribute that amount, using its share of the American Rescue Plan Act, but Norway has already allocated all of its federal funds.

Lajoie said the only way Norway could help NPSW financially was through a special town meeting, but there was no guarantee voters would support the request.

Lajoie suggested the financing plan two months in advance, which would buy the facility time to see if expenses stabilize and conditions improve with recycling and disposal. It would also provide six months of expenses and income to help the group plan for the final two quarters.

“They agreed that this could meet their immediate cash flow needs and give them a few extra months to see where the trends are going,” Lajoie said.

The advance payment would also allow the facility to determine how its new disposal fee structure will affect the budget. Starting December 1, residents of both cities will pay more to get rid of items such as mattresses, furniture, refrigerators and televisions.

Lajoie and board chairman Russell Newcomb met with the NPSW board in late October to discuss the situation.

The two cities contribute a combined $584,000 per year, paid in monthly installments, which represents 74% of its budget for the operation on Brown Street. But since the start of the new fiscal year, recycling revenues are down and expenses are up, including energy and transportation costs. According to Lajoie, recycling revenues represent approximately 10% of projected revenues and disposal revenues represent approximately 14% of projected revenues.

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