China, Palermo agree on new transfer station fees

by Mary Grow

China Select Board members held a brief meeting Feb. 28. With one member absent and another participating remotely, board Chairman Ronald Breton had postponed continued review of the proposed 2022-23 town budget.

Town Manager Rebecca Hapgood reported that she and Robert Kurek, who chairs the Palermo Select Board and is one of two Palermo representatives on China’s Transfer Station Committee, were in agreement on the new charge for Palermo trash bags.

Interpreting the factors that determine bag prices, as listed in the contract that lets Palermo residents use China’s transfer station, they decided the new price should be $2.70 per bag, effective April 1. The current price is $2.00.

Kurek intends to present the proposed price to the Palermo Select Board at a March 10 meeting, she said. China’s Transfer Station Committee, whose members have discussed the bag price at length, is scheduled to meet March 8.

Hapgood further proposes that the price be reviewed every January; that the six-month notice of a price change required by contract be amended to three months, so a January decision can be implemented in April; and that other contract changes and clarifications be considered.

Hapgood had added to her initial list of possible uses for American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. She suggests replacing the town office generator, which she believes dates back to the ice storm of 1998 or thereabouts, and adding a second generator for the old town office.

And she suggested select board members consider closing the town office driveway onto Lakeview Drive (except in emergencies) and routing traffic via Alder Park Road. Fast-moving traffic on Lakeview Drive makes turning on and off the highway dangerous, she said.

Board member Janet Preston liked the idea, now that many voters are used to taking Alder Park Road during elections. Wayne Chadwick was not sure turning east onto Alder Park Road was any safer than turning east into the nearby office driveway. Board Chairman Ronald Breton said the sight distance west on Alder Park Road is short for drivers leaving the town office property.

Hapgood said public works department mechanic and plow truck driver Josh Crommett has resigned, effective the end of the week. She is advertising for a replacement, she said.

The next regular China Select Board meetings are scheduled for Monday evenings March 14 and March 28. A special meeting March 21 is likely as board members finish their budget recommendations and prepare the warrant for the June 14 town business meeting.


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