Police & Fire

County commissioners sign line of credit with Androscoggin Savings

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DOVER-FOXCROFT — Should the need arise, the county has up to a $1.75 million line of credit, with a 2.45 percent interest rate, with Androscoggin Savings Bank after the Piscataquis County Commissioners and Treasurer Johanna Turner signed the paperwork during a March 3 meeting.


“Each year we have a line of credit to pay our bills and generally we close out our line of credit before the end of the year,” Commissioners Chair James White said.


Last year the county switched to Androscoggin Savings and “I’m pleased with what we’re seeing so far,” Turner said.


When asked she said the county paid about $25,000 in interest during 2019. “The relationship so far has been great,” Turner added.


“It seems so far that it has worked out great,” White said.


In other business County Manager Michael Williams reported, “We are still awaiting the final sales and purchase agreement on the building” as the county is looking to purchase the former Key Bank location in downtown Guilford for the new home of the sheriff’s office patrol and investigation divisions.


Late last year the commissioners authorized Sheriff Robert Young to sign a lease through mid-2020 for the patrol and investigation divisions to remain at the former Guilford Primary School building through the middle of the year while a real estate transaction is pending. In November a sale closed on the building with Friends of Community Fitness purchasing the structure from owner Clark’s Enterprises.


The county also looked at the C.H. Lightbody Medical Center on Park Street, which now is the location of the Guilford municipal office. In the middle of the process the county found another building that would better suit the needs of the sheriff’s office, and the commissioners have said the town was very gracious in letting the county back out of the verbal agreement.


To alleviate cramped conditions and lack of privacy inside the main sheriff’s office in the same larger complex as the Piscataquis County Jail on Court Street in Dover-Foxcroft, in the spring of 2018 the patrol and investigation divisions moved up Route 15 to Guilford at the former primary school building. The law enforcement space previously was the home of the SAD 4 administrative office suite.


With the school building placed up for sale, county officials had been working with the town on an agreement to rent and then purchase, following an affirmative vote at the annual March town meeting, the C.H. Lightbody Medical Center. In April Mayo Regional Hospital closed its primary care office in Guilford after experiencing significant provider turnover in the previous year and a half. Guilford Medical Associates was housed there via a lease with the town.


Williams said the budget committee was set to meet on Thursday, March 5 to discuss the former Key Bank building purchase. He said he is looking to schedule several public meetings around the region to inform citizens about the situation.


“Our Facebook page ‘Piscataquis County Flood Watch’ that’s getting pretty active now,” Piscataquis County Emergency Management Agency Director Tom Capraro said. “We have about 400 followers.”


Capraro said residents will head out and take photos and videos of area waterways and post to help provide current information on conditions. “It really helps out a lot when the flood potential starts,” he said.


The EMA director said no far no cases of the coronavirus have been reported in Maine but people should still take some simple precautions including “just basic stuff, wash your hands, cough into your sleeve and if you’re sick don’t come to work — it’s just common sense.”


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