VASSALBORO: CMP presents revised easement proposal; town counter offers

by Mary Grow

Vassalboro selectmen discussed an unusually varied list of issues at their Oct. 17 meeting, postponing action on most of them.

Keltie Beaudoin attended the meeting with a proposal from Central Maine Power Company (CMP) to revise its easement allowing a power line to cross town property near the Webber Pond outlet dam. After she explained how CMP arrived at a proposed $10,000 payment to the town for the revision, selectmen, encouraged from the audience by former town manager Michael Vashon, counter-proposed $12,500. Beaudoin will present the counter-offer to her superiors.

Beaudoin explained that the new document will clearly state that the easement is 100 feet wide. CMP will keep it cleared; part of it goes through the boat landing parking lot, and she pointed out that neither the town nor the company wants trees in the parking lot.

When she said some existing trees “would probably go,” Town Manager Mary Sabins reminded her of limits on cutting trees in the shoreland zone. When she said CMP planned to replace existing poles with taller ones, Vashon pointed out the need to consider Charles Cabaniss’ nearby private airstrip.

CMP will pay for deeds and any other costs associated with the easement revision, Beaudoin said.

School Superintendent Alan Pfeiffer told selectmen the school year has started well, with an enrollment of 419 students, an increase of nine. He and school board members plan to work with the town’s new solar committee on possibilities of a shared solar project, and with the selectmen and budget committee as school board members begin developing a multi-year strategic plan.

Sabins said Gary Coull has resigned from Vassalboro’s Board of Appeals because he is moving out of town. Other board members are also ready to resign, she said. Any resident interested in joining the board is invited to contact the town office.

Selectmen had invited planning board members and a representative of the Central Maine Growth Council to the Oct. 17 meeting, but schedule conflicts changed the plan. Now, Sabins said, a Growth Council representative intends to come to the Nov. 12 planning board meeting (postponed from the usual first Tuesday of the month because of Election Day).

The manager announced that Police Chief Mark Brown and the Vassalboro Fire Department have received grants to buy most of the new radios they need and are looking for funding sources for the rest.

Selectmen made two decisions during the Oct. 17 meeting. After a very short public hearing that brought no comments, they approved amendments to the General Assistance Ordinance appendices, adjusting aid levels. And they approved a catering permit for Robert Laster, doing business as Crostini’s Catering, in Winthrop, for an Oct. 26 retirement dinner at St. Bridget’s Center, in North Vassalboro.

The next regular Vassalboro selectmen’s meeting would have fallen on Halloween. It has been rescheduled two days earlier, for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 29.


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