The Most Northeastern City in the United States.

2014 Comprehensive Plan

See the link below to view the 2014 Comprehensive Plan.

2014 Comprehensive Plan

City of Caribou Awarded Medals Recognizing Achievements in Addressing Childhood Obesity through Let’s Move! Cities, Towns and Counties

The National League of Cities (NLC) has recognized the City of Caribou for recent completion of key health and wellness goals for Let’s Move! Cities, Towns and Counties (LMCTC).   LMCTC is a major component of First Lady Michelle Obama’s comprehensive Let’s Move! initiative, which is dedicated to solving the childhood obesity epidemic within a generation. LMCTC calls upon local elected officials to adopt sustainable and holistic policies that improve communities’ access to healthy affordable food and opportunities for physical activity through five goal areas.

 

“We congratulate and commend Caribou for your efforts to improve the health of your community’s children and families,” said NLC President Chris Coleman, mayor of Saint Paul, Minn. “Through the leadership and dedication of local elected officials in cities, towns and counties across the country, we are beginning to see a measurable decrease in obesity rates and a cultural shift towards health.”

 

Eightmedals were awarded to Caribou for action taken to improve access to healthy affordable food and increase opportunities for physical activity.  These medals were awarded because of Caribou’s achievements in promoting healthy living, healthy eating and physical activity.

 

Superintendent of Parks and Recreation, Kathy Mazzuchelli commended the collaborative effort with Cary Medical Center and Parks and Recreation staff to instill good nutritional habits in young people and promoting activities that engage both youth and adults.   Mazzuchelli noted that Cary Medical Center staff have come into afterschool youth programs to highlight nutrition, hydration and the importance of exercise and have developed wonderful and very informative interactive presentations for youth.

 

All LMCTC sites have the opportunity to earn up to five gold medals, one for each actionable goal to which they commit to as part of the initiative. Medals are awarded to local elected officials based on achievements in each of the following five goal areas:

 

  • Goal I: Start Early, Start Smart: Promoting best practices for nutrition, physical activity, and screen time in early care and education settings
  • Goal II: My Plate, Your Place: Prominently displaying MyPlate in all municipal or county venues where food is served
  • Goal III: Smart Servings for Students: Expanding access to meal programs before, during and after the school day, and/or over summer months.
  • Goal IV: Model Food Service: Implementing healthy and sustainable food service guidelines that are aligned with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans
  • Goal V: Active Kids at Play: Increasing opportunities for physical activity

 

NLC is working in partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and with the support of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the National Association of Counties and other nonprofit organizations, to assist local elected officials who join LMCTC as they implement policy and environmental changes to prevent childhood obesity. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has awarded NLC a grant to provide technical assistance to local elected officials working to create healthier communities and prevent childhood obesity, including those participating in LMCTC.

 

More than 440 cities, towns and counties are participating in LMCTC. Each month, NLC recognizes local elected officials who achieve key benchmarks for the five LMCTC goals. Since July 2012, NLC has awarded 1,754 bronze, silver, and gold medals to recognize local elected officials across the country for their LMCTC progress. Caribou is the only municipality in Aroostook County participating in the LMCTC program.

For more information about LMCTC and Caribou’s accomplishments, visit www.HealthyCommunitiesHealthyFuture.org.

 

The National League of Cities is dedicated to helping city leaders build better communities. NLC is a resource and advocate for 19,000 cities, towns and villages, representing more than 218 million Americans.

 

Council Survey Results from June 10, 2014

On June 10th, 2014 the City Council conducted a survey outside the polls for the Primary Election. The results of that survey are below.

 

Do you believe the City of Caribou currently offers:

  1. Adequate services for a City its size     320  –  65%
  2. More services than necessary    67     –  13%
  3. Should provide more services for its citizens     107  –  22%

If you believe services should be reduced in order to save money please circle any areas you feel should be looked at:

Police Dept.  63
City Administration (Hours open to the Public)    97
Parks and Recreation Dept.  81
Library   64
Fire and Ambulance  40
Public Works (Street Maintenance & Snow Plowing) 60

 

1.   Do you favor the continuance of brush removal once a year by the Highway Department?

  • Yes: 384 – 75%
  • No: 127 – 25%

 

2.   Do you want to see the sidewalks plowed during the winter:

  • All of them:    246 – 50%
  • Just one side of the street:     243 – 50%

 

3.  Should the city consider:

  • turning the street lights all back on:     159 – 32%
  • leave them as they are now:       282  – 56%
  • turn a few more off:      61  – 12%

 

5.  Usage of the pool has dropped about 65% over the last 5 years.  Should the city consider closing the swimming pool for good?

  • Yes:  199 – 40%
  • No: 297 – 60%

 

8. Do you think the Library:

  • Should stay open as is: 357 – 70%
  • Consider being open shorter hours And fewer days: 154   30%

 

9.  Do you think the Rec. Dept:

Should stay open as is: 385  – 77%

consider opening with shorter hours and fewer days:  116-  23%

 

10.  Do you think the city office should consider reduced operating hours?

  • Yes:      169 – 34%
  • No:    330  – 66%

 

11. Do you think tax payer dollars should continue to be used to supplement the Chamber of Commerce budget?

  • Yes: 183 – 36%
  • No: 324 – 64%

 

12. Do you think tax payer dollars should continue to be used to support snowmobile trails and groomer equipment?

  •  Yes   291 – 57%
  • No    216 – 43%

 

13.   Should the city continue to operate the Airport:

  • Yes     331 69%
  • No     150  31%

 

Do you live:

  • In town 338
  • In the Country188

 

Do you work in Caribou? 155

 

Do you rent: 54

Do you own a home: 394

Are you Retired:  51

 

Approximately 526 people completed the survey.  Of those, not everyone voted on each question.  Percentages are based on number of votes each question received.

Office Building For Sale

The City currently owns 26,000 square feet of office space in Downtown Caribou that is for sale.

The Building is 26,800 square feet not counting the basement area. It has dual backup generators one 65 KW and one 50KW, with redundant wiring. There are multiple T-1 lines and other connections. The server room is approximately 20’ x 40’ with chilled elevated floors and halogen extinguishers. The building has a replacement value well in excess of $2 million as per construction tables.

There is a reception office at the main entrance, a large reception area in the front lobby. There is a series of offices around the perimeter of the building on the first floor surrounding the main server room. The second floors has offices and cubical space, an employee training area within that can seat approximately 100 persons. There are also kitchen facilities on the second floor. The building is fully sprinkled, has an alarm system wired to the police and fire departments and a host of other amenities. Directly across the street from the back entrance is a City owned parking lot that has approximately 100 parking spaces. Within two blocks of the building there are well over 300 parking spaces in city owned parking lots. This has accommodated at times greater than 100 persons working within the building at any one time and when they were working on a 24 hour basis.

More information is included in this site profile package.

The building is for sale for $250,000. For more information on this building please contact Austin Bleess at 207-493-3324 x230 or via email at citymanager@cariboumaine.org.

Manufacturing Space Available

The City of Caribou currently has available for rent 25,000 square feet of Manufacturing Space located just off US Route 1. The building has three phase power, has a full fire protection system, and is move in ready. The building comes with air compressors, air conditioning, and public water and sewer.  More information is included in this site profile package.

This building is available for lease at very competitive rates for new and expanding businesses. For more information on this building please contact Austin Bleess at 207-493-3324 x230 or via email at citymanager@cariboumaine.org.

 

Supporting Community: Empowering Kids To Be Successful

No one is sure who loses more sleep worrying about the decisions they have made…..parents or children.    Today’s parents have a more difficult time monitoring, disciplining and protecting their children.   Social media has created a whole new world and one that is difficult to navigate both for parents and young people.   Fortunately the Community Alcohol and Drug Education Team (CADET) and the Power of Prevention Program will be hosting a program for parents on Wednesday, March 26th at the Caribou Middle School entitled:  Empowering Kids to Be Successful.

Empowering Successful Kids:  Raising confident, caring young people takes intentional actions.   Positive actions by parents, teachers, neighbors, faith leaders and an entire community can help kids identify their “SPARK”!    “Sparks” is a metaphor for describing how young people experience talents, interests, or strengths that make them feel really happy, energized, and passionate, and that give them real purpose, direction or focus.  Research shows that kids who thrive have two important supports:  knowledge of what their sparks are and adults who support the development of those sparks.  So what are you doing to support the young people in your community?

The best supportive role that most adults can play is simply as a source of encouragement.   On Wednesday, March 26th, positive youth development expert, Lori A. Hoffner will share with us the impact of a strength-based approach using the Search Institutes 40 Developmental Asset Framework.  The evening will help parents, teachers, neighbors, faith based organizations, clubs , service organizations, youth sport coaches and any other individuals or groups that work with children to learn how they can empower local youth.

Hoffner was the Executive Director of PACCT, a small non-profit in Jefferson County, Colorado, for 11 years.   PACCT is an organization dedicated to the success of youth and community.  Following the tragic shootings at Columbine High School in 1999, Hoffner, through her leadership with PACCT was invited to help with the creation of Columbine Connections Resource Center, a community center dedicated to the healing of those impacted along with SHOUTS, a teen drop-in center for the youth of the community. She worked closely with leaders from mental health organizations, the school district, local law enforcement and park and recreation agencies. Lori is highly regarded as a network agent for community collaborations.

Hoffner’s experience in a variety of community roles has provided her with a wide range of situations where a unique set of strategies were required to address the issue(s) at hand. These experiences led to the development of Supporting Community giving Hoffner the opportunity to share her message and successes with communities and organizations nationwide.

Come join us at the Caribou Middle School at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 26th to learn how an entire community that provides intentional actions, support and encouragement can help all our young people THRIVE !

Citizen input wanted for Community Development Block Grant Applications

The City of Caribou is seeking citizen input on Community Development Block Grant applications. The City of Caribou is planning on submitting letters of intent for CDBG grant applications in the areas of Economic Development, Micro-Enterprise Assistance, Housing Assistance, and Workforce Development. Information on applicable projects and conditions are available through the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development Office of Community Development at www.meocd.org.

Citizens interested in submitting ideas to the Community Development Advisory Committee can do so through via email by contacting Tony Mazzucco, Assistant City Manager/CDBG program administrator at tmazzucco@cariboumaine.org. Citizens interested in joining the Community Development Advisory Committee, which in Caribou also serves as the Community Revitalization Committee, should contact Austin Bleess, City Manager, at citymanager@cariboumaine.org or by calling 493-3324 ext 230.

The City of Caribou Community Development Advisory Committee will hold a meeting on Tuesday, February 25th, 2014 at 6:30pm to review proposals and vote on which proposals the City will submit letters of intent for. All meetings are open to the public and citizen input is highly desired.

The City of Caribou is looking forward to submitting Public Infrastructure and Downtown Revitalization CDBG grant applications in 2015 and ideas for submissions in those categories will be accepted as well.

Notice to Contractors – Installation of Heat Pumps

The electrical wiring of Heat Pumps must be done by Licensed Electricians.  The State of Maine has issued a memorandum of understanding which allows non-electricians to install the electrical wiring and components of mini split heat pumps. This memorandum does not apply in Caribou. See the link below for details:

Notice to Contractors on Installation of Heat Pumps

Celebrating OP Pierson

Many people drive by the residence every day but they don’t know the history.  Many people indulge in America’s most popular fast food….the French fry….but they don’t think of Caribou, Maine.   Well, Caribou is going to change that by celebrating Olof Powers Pierson, Caribou native and inventor of the frozen French fry, during OP Pierson Days, September 26-28th.

O.P. PiersonPierson was born September 26, 1906 in Caribou.  The son of Olof and Berdina Pierson, he graduated from Caribou High School in 1923 and attended MIT, graduating with a degree in Electrical Engineering in 1929.    Following his tenure at MIT, Pierson enlisted in the Army Air Corps where he earned the rank of lieutenant pilot.   His aeronautical fettish evolved into him becoming the first president of the Portland Airport (Jetport now) and  test piloting experimental craft.   His passion for math, science and life in general brought him back to MIT where he earned his master’s degree in aeronautical engineering following his stint in the Army Air Corps.

Pierson had a brilliant mind and was always the inventor.  One of his first projects was developing a prototype plant to reuse crankcase oil; a process that is still widely used today.   But his international legacy came from his agrarian roots in The County.  During World War II he was commissioned by the US Army to come up with a process to dehydrate potatoes for the armed services.   Pierson was employed by the H.C. Baxter Company of Hartland, Maine where he worked as plant engineer in charge of new product development.    While working on this project he eventually became tagged as “the father of the frozen French fry potato”.   In 1947, Pierson and the H.C. Baxter Company, and the Snowflake plant in Corinna joined forces with Birdseye Co. of Caribou to produce and market the first package of frozen French fries.

Remembering his roots, Pierson left the H.C. Baxter company and returned to Caribou where he set his sights on aiding The County’s potato farmers with harvesting, storing and processing their crops.  His impact on the industry was remarkable as he invented the steam peeler which is widely used by commercial food processors to peel root vegetables.   He also created the shallow fat fryer which is used to produce America’s number one fast food…..the French fry.  By the 1950’s Pierson was busy developing a workable potato washer, a potato top puller and an early version of the potato harvester.

Eventually, Pierson moved on to design the first French fry plant for McCain Foods in Florenceville, New Brunswick.   Most of the folks in The County know McCain Frozen Foods as a multi-billion dollar international food processor and distributor.  In an article in Memories of Maine magazine, Harrison McCain, then chairman of the McCain Foods in 1993 was quoted as saying:  “I remember him (Pierson) as a very kindly, very bright man who was not quick to decide things.  He went slower.”  McCain noted that himself and his brother Wallace were always in a hurry to get things done, but said Pierson didn’t want to rush a good thing, “he had the right answers in the end.  He had a very inventive mind, “ McCain said.  OP Pierson was also responsible for Birdseye building their French fly plant in Caribou, bringing much needed jobs to the region along with a perfect market for local farmers.

But his inventiveness didn’t stop there.  He also invented a little heating unit to aid farmers with potato storage.  Most of us know that unit at the Silent Glow as it was produced by the Silent Glow Oil Burner Company.  He also designed the pallet box, a common item used in farming today.

With his vast knowledge in dehydration, Pierson became a consultant with the United Nations Food Organization where he and his wife Frances and their family traveled internationally to work with foreign companies regarding plant design, storage, potato processing and equipment and machinery.

OP Pierson’s inventive mind and passion to help out local farmers transcends Caribou and has provided food to populations around the globe……so when you go to a restaurant and they ask…”do you want fries with that” you can thank Caribou native and inventor, Olaf Powers Pierson.

So, now that you know the rest of the story, we hope you jump on the band wagon and help celebrate our community heritage during OP Pierson Days, Sept 26-28th.    Have an idea for an event….give us a call.   Want to paint a potato barrel to commemorate our agrarian heritage….call the Caribou Parks & Recreation Department and reserve one of only 10 barrels from the Bradbury Barrel Company.  Barrels will be available for $25 on a first come, first serve basis and once completed will be displayed at the Caribou Wellness Center.

Caribou is on the move……let’s celebrate one of Caribou’s greatest movers !!!

The City of Caribou Accepts Credit/Debit Cards

The City of Caribou accepts credit/debit cards from Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express.