Canton board’s goals hinge on windmill income

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CANTON — How to spend windmill money, increase tax revenue and widen sidewalks are among the goals of the select board for the upcoming year.

Selectmen agreed Thursday night that they would like to create a plan for the windmill project money that is set to begin commercial operation in December, find ways to increase tax revenue and to figure out how to keep the tax rate stable once the town has the income from the windmills.

Selectman Rob Walker said he wants to create one-, three- and five-year plans, “because we’re going to have that windmill money.”

His other goals include capital improvements such as road and building work, improvements to the downtown area and sidewalks.

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Selectman Brian Keene said he would like to have a capital equipment purchase or replacement plan and to widen the sidewalk on Main Street from the lower part of the street to the lake. Keene said he wants to improve the town but still be fiscally responsible to the taxpayers.

Selectman Russell Adams added that he would like to widen the sidewalk leading to the ballpark on Route 140. Another of Adams’ goals is to “have something done with the Village Ridge property,” possibly to sell it.

Selectman Carole Robbins said her goals included cleaning up the town and fostering its community spirit.

In other business:

* A General Assistance ordinance from the Maine Department of Health and Human Services for Oct. 1, 2017, to Sept. 30, 2018, was signed and approved by the board. The maximum monthly food assistance for a household of four is $640. The overall maximum General Assistance rate for rent for a family of four in Canton is $1,169, the same as Lewiston-Auburn rates, according to Town Administrator Scotty Kilbreth.

* The select board accepted a bid of $8,900 from Jean Castonguay for the town’s F-550 plow truck and a bid of $7 per yard with a three-year contract from Weldon Lucas for winter sand.

* Walker told the board that the sand screen used by the town is in need of repair. Selectmen agreed that Road Foreman Paul McKenna will rebuild the screen at a cost of $2,000.

* Kilbreth said problems with the sewer treatment plant off Bixby Road were continuing. “Our sewer issue is not over; it’s plugged again,” he said. “We’re thinking maybe there could be a turtle stuck in there.” Kilbreth said that the problem was within 150 to 350 feet of pipe between two setting ponds and “jet blasting” the pipes was the likely method to clear the clog.

Another blockage was caused by beavers plugging the culverts with their handiwork on Bixby and Campbell Road. McKenna told the board that he’d found a big turtle trapped in the culvert and that he’d used a large screen to free the reptile. The board said they planned to hire a trapper to remove the beavers.

* A town fair will be held from noon to 4 p.m. on Oct. 7 at the ball field on Route 140. Games of chance, vendors, a bounce house, baked goods, sausage subs, fried dough and cotton candy will all be available.

mhutchinson@sunmediagroup.net

The town office sign in Canton. 

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