The Most Northeastern City in the United States.

Caribou Planning Board – Notice of Public Hearings

The Caribou Planning Board will hold two Public Hearings on Wednesday, December 2, 2015 at 5:30 pm in City Council Chambers, 25 High Street. The first Hearing is to consider a request to re-zone land on Sweden Street, Tax Map 32, Lot 175 from Commercial 2 to Residential. The second Hearing is to consider a Site Design Application to convert the top floor of 46 Sweden Street from one apartment to two apartments – Tax Map 31, Lot 65. Interested individuals are encouraged to attend.

Caribou Planning Board – Notice of Public Hearing

The Caribou Planning Board will hold a public hearing on Wednesday, December 2, 2015 at 5:30 pm in City Council Chambers, 25 High Street. The hearing is to receive public comment on a proposed amendment to Chapter 13 Land Use Ordinances, Section 760 of Caribou Code modifying the requirements for Daycare Facilities. Interested individuals are encouraged to attend. Copies of the proposed amendment are available in the City Clerk’s Office and below:

Daycare Ordinance



Caribou City Council – Notice of Public Hearing

The Caribou City Council will hold a public hearing, Monday, November 9, 2015, at 6:00 p.m. in the City Council Chambers, 25 High Street, Caribou, Maine.  The public hearing is to consider amendments to Appendix A – Overall Maximums, Appendix C – Housing Maximums, and Appendix D – Electricity Maximums.  A copy of the General Assistance ordinance and the proposed amendment are on file in the City Clerk’s Office.

Jayne R. Farrin, General Assistance Administrator

Budget Season is here again


By Austin Bleess, City Manager


As the City gets into budget season once again it comes on the heels of more great news for the City of Caribou. Just this week the City was named by SmartAsset (a New York based financial technology company) as the second most tax-friendly places for retirees in Maine. Earlier this year that same company named Caribou as the most affordable place to live in Maine. This is great recognition for the City and highlights the hard work done by the City to have a reasonable budget.

Back in 2011 when the citizens of Caribou voted to approve a new City Charter one of the things that was changed the most was how the City does its budgeting. Starting in September the first report is due. This report lists out every single line item in the budget with a three year average of actual expenditures, previous year’s expense budget, previous year’s actual expenditure, current year expense budget, first eight months actual expenditures, and an annualized actual expenditure based on the eight month actual expenditure. This report is available to the public both on the city website and at City Hall.

It is this budget information that the department heads and I use in creating the budget for the coming year. We go over each line in the budget, examine them, and make adjustments where it is necessary. Some lines are decreased and some are increased. Either way the changes are justified using the historical expense numbers and by looking ahead to what the priorities are. It is this meticulous and thoughtful approach that has helped us earn the distinction of the most affordable place to live in Maine and the second most tax-friendly place for retirees in Maine.

On October 15 the first draft of the 2016 budget will be published on the website and will be available in City Hall as well. This budget lists each and every line item in the budget. It is this draft of the budget that the Department Heads and I will present to you the citizens and the City Council in the budget public forums. These public forums are held in the City Council Chambers and start at 6pm on Monday October 19th, Tuesday October 20th, and Wednesday October 21st.  At these public forums you can ask questions, find out how all the budget numbers are arrived at, and make comments and suggestions on the budget as well.

There is also the formal public hearing on the budget which will be held November 9th during the City Council meeting. As with all public hearings, citizens can come and voice their concerns and comments to the Council at this time.

The final budget likely will not be approved until December, which means there will likely be changes made to the budget between what is presented on October 15th and what gets adopted for 2016. Throughout the process we will be posting revisions of the budget to the website for public review.

One of the great things about local government is that citizens have direct access to city officials and can have your voice heard at every meeting. I encourage you to be a part of the process as we move through the 2016 budgeting process.


Austin Bleess has been the City Manager of Caribou since October 2012. He can be reached at 493-3324 x230 or via email at


Attention Dog Owners

Purchase your dog’s 2016 license before January 1, 2016 and have your dog’s tag number entered into a raffle for a $50.00 gift certificate to the Veterinarian of your choice.

Sponsored by the Caribou Police Department

Caribou Heritage Day 2015!

Caribou Heritage Day
September 26, 2015
This year celebrating
The Collins Family
Brought to you by the City of Caribou and
the Caribou Area Chamber of Commerce

11am – 2pm: Antique car show at the Downtown Mall, Music, food by Guns & Hoses, vendors
3pm: Sign ceremony for the Collins Family
6pm – 8:30pm: Live music at the Caribou High School with food vendors!
8:30pm: Fireworks at the Caribou High School

Collins Family History:

The Collins Family has played a large part in Caribou’s wonderful history as well as having helped shape Caribou into what it is today. Four sons of William and Sarah (Dickey) Collins: Samuel (S.W.), James, Harvey and David came to the area as pioneers in the 1840s and 1850s. S.W. Collins arrived in 1844 and, in partnership with Washington Vaughan, started what is now the S.W. Collins Company–still owned and managed by descendants to this day. Senator Susan Collins is his direct descendent. James lived with S.W. and worked for him. Harvey built a house on North Main Street and David settled on Otter Brook. All three of those original houses still exist today.

For additional information please contact or

Thursdays On Sweden

Thursdays On Sweden is back for 2015!

The event runs from 6-9pm. As always there will be music, food, and vendors! It’s fun for the whole family, so come on down and say Howdy Neighbor!

June 4
Super Summer Kickoff with French Toast
French Toast is one of northern Maine’s favorite bands and they will be rocking the house that night.

June 18
Sock Hop with Music X-Press and special guests the stars of the popular show North Woods Law! Dance the night away. Reminisce about the old times and new. Oh, and get your picture with your favorite Game Warden.

July 2 Cajun Night with La Recolte
La Recolte…live from Lafayette, Louisiana. The streets will be filled with great Cajun music direct from Louisiana. I can tell you even if you don’t dance…you will have happy feet that night. Expect a good crowd!!!

July 16
A Night of Jammin’ with The Band Apollo
Nominated by The New England Music Awards for Best Maine Artist for 2014. The band draws influence from a variety of artists ranging from Muse, Audioslave, and Bruno Mars to Maroon 5, Frank Ocean, and John Mayer

July 30
Dog Days of Summer with Muddy Ruckus
Muddy Ruckus is from Portland Maine. The trio plays an original blend of Americana, gypsy swing and punk.

August 13
Beach Party Night with Rock Dox
If you’re ailing from a lack of music with a hook, meaningful lyrics and a killer guitar solo there’s a band that’s got a prescription for you.

August 27
Disco Night with Motor Booty Affair
Relive the 70’s with the Ultimate Disco Tribute Band!

Click here for downloadable posters!
8.5 x 11
8.5 x 17


Vendor form can be found here. 

Caribou Public Library New Program Opportunities

Programs will be offered year round and follow the Caribou school system schedule. Programs will start on January 19, 2015.

Little Explores (ages 0-5):  Tuesday 10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

Adventures (ages 6-8):  Thursday 10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

Tweens & Teens (ages 9-18):  Wednesday 3:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Beyond the Book (All ages are welcome):  Friday 10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

*Beyond the Book: All ages are invited to enjoy stories, games, and poetry.

To sign up for programs, please call Katherine Wilcox-Bosse, Youth Service Librarian, at (207) 493-4214 and you can also like us on facebook.

Public Safety Complex Study Committee

The Caribou City Council is looking for citizens who may be interested in serving on the Public Safety Complex Study Committee. As part of the updated Caribou Comprehensive Plan this committee was recommended to look at the need for a new building for the Caribou Fire and Ambulance Department. A combined facility with the Caribou Police Department may ultimately prove the best fiscal option and solve two problems with one facility.

Anyone interested in serving on this committee should complete a Volunteer Application and submit it to City Clerk Jayne Farrin at or 25 High Street, Caribou, ME.


November 2014 Council Survey

The following are the results from the Council survey conducted at the polls on Election Day, November 4, 2014. Approximately 3,000 Caribou residents voted that day and 1,284 of them took the Council survey. Below are the responses of the 1,284 people that took the Council Survey.

1. Do you favor the continuance of brush removal once a year by the Highway Department? 81% 19%
 2. Do you want ALL the sidewalks plowed during the winter at an additional cost of approx. $25,000?  62%  38%
 3. Do you want ALL the street lights to be turned back on at the additional cost of approx. $50,000?  41%  59%
 4. Do you think the city office should stay open later a couple of evenings a week and close early one afternoon?  49%  51%
  5. Do you think the city should spend $69,000 (after grants & donations) to build a new splash pad?
(Total cost would be about $250,000)
 36%  64%
 6. Do you agree with the secession movement that the rural area should secede from the compact area of Caribou?  22%  78%
 7. Nylander Museum patrons’ usage is minimal.  Do you think the city should close the Nylander Museum?  44%  56%
 8. If the Nylander Museum is closed, do you think the city should sell the building?  63%  37%
 9. Have you attended a Thursdays on Sweden event, either this year or last?  65%  35%
 10.  Do you plan to attend a Thursdays on Sweden event next year?  78%  22%
 11.  Do you think tax payer dollars should be spent to support non-profits and charities such as the Red Cross,
Aroostook Area Agency on Aging, Aroostook Council for Healthy Families and the like?
 53%  47%
 12. To help avoid a tax increase, the vacancies at the Library, Highway Dept. and Police Dept. may not be
filled.   Are you in agreement with this?
 56%  44%


If you have questions or comments on the survey please contact the City Council.