D-F selectmen approve corridor moratorium extension
DOVER-FOXCROFT — Three years ago residents approved an ordinance concerning private distribution corridors, including paved highways, pipelines and high-tension transmission lines. The moratorium enacted in 2014 — meaning permits for these types of development projects cannot be granted during the timeline — was in effect for 180 days. The moratorium has since been renewed six times with the current extension in place through Nov. 26.
During a Nov. 13 select meeting the board approved another 180-day extension for a corridor moratorium ordinance, starting Monday, Nov. 27 and ending on May 25, 2018.
“We have continued to extend this moratorium as we worked on the comprehensive plan and now on the land use ordinance,” Town Manager Jack Clukey said.
“As I have said, we think we will be looking at one more extension,” he said, with a vote on the land use ordinance scheduled for the June referendum.
Moratorium extensions can be put in place as long as reasonable progress is being made to address the needs identified in the document, such as the town continuing to work on the land use ordinance. The selectmen have said the land use ordinance committee has been meeting diligently to get the document ready for a vote at the annual town meeting referendum next June.
In other business, town officials met with a pair of representatives from RealTerm Energy to discuss the next steps in the effort to upgrade municipal street lights.
“It really is what is best for the town, every town is different with its use approaches,” RealTerm Energy Vice President of Sales Mark Carter said.
Three pairs of demo lights, of varying degrees, have been installed downtown. Currently in place are 4,000-degree lights in front of Dover True Value and the Union Square Mall, 3,000-degree lights are by Pat’s Pizza and the Pub and 2,700-degree lights are located next to the fire station and Bigelow Travel. The degrees refer to the color temperature of the LED lights, for example, natural white (4,000) and warm white (3,000).
When asked at an earlier meeting, Finance Director Dave Johnson said there likely would not be a significant — or any — price difference between the different types of lights.
“We will be making decisions in the next few weeks on what style fixtures we want,” Clukey said, with lighting options for residential areas and parking lots to also be considered.
“This is your chance to go back and fix 25 years of helter skelter design,” RealTerm Energy Manager of Sales Operations Michael Miller said. He said after the selection and design processes, RealTerm Energy will conduct a detailed evaluation of costs, savings and payback for the street light project.
Select Vice Chair Cindy Freeman Cyr wondered how the public would be involved to help make the right choices for the town.
Miller said RealTerm Energy can assist with its two marketing staff members. He said in the past information has been made available on both the company and municipal websites.
Carter said RealTerm Energy has contracted with about two dozen Maine communities and other towns across the U.S. and Canada.
The selectmen approved a plan to upgrade the public works department loaders. The proposal is comprised of purchasing a 2014 model with low use hours, trading the town’s 1995 loader along with some other equipment and buying a 2007 loader that has been used as a rental.
“We put together a proposal we think would basically allow us to upload our bucket loaders,” Clukey said. “We would like to go from two loaders to three loaders so then we could do what we want to do and our oldest loader would be much newer than where we are now.”
Under the plan $90,000 would be borrowed from the wastewater department and repaid over five years at a 2.3 percent interest rate. The funds would cover the purchase of a 2014 Hyundai Loader from Tilton Truck and Equipment of Bangor/Hermon.
A 1995 John Deere Loader, 2000 6-Yard International and other equipment would be traded to and the 2007 Hyundai Loader would be purchased for $14,000 from Abbott Equipment Sales of Lebanon.
“We have Hometown Holidays on Saturday, Dec. 2 and that’s the usual activities,” Clukey said in his report, about the day of events taking place in towns across Piscataquis County.
He said the parade will leave Foxcroft Academy at 5 p.m. on Dec. 2 and travel down West Main Street to the fire station, where Santa and Mrs. Claus will step off the fire truck, light the Christmas tree and then head inside to hear what children want to find in their stockings. Clukey said carriage rides will travel along Lincoln Street from North to Davis Street.
“We will hope for some nice weather for that,” Clukey said.