Canton tax rate drops fourth year in a row

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CANTON — For the fourth consecutive year, the property tax rate has dropped because of revenue from the $50 million Canton Mountain wind power project.

Selectmen voted Thursday to set the 2018-19 rate at $17.50 per $1,000 of property valuation, a decrease of $2.35 from last year.

“That makes at least four years in a row that the town of Canton has dropped their (tax) rate,” Selectman Brian Keene said.

The lower rate is attributed to taxes from the eight-turbines development, Selectman Russell Adams said.

The project went online in November 2017.

Selectmen will hold a public forum at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 19, to get ideas on how to spend the community benefit funds the town will receive from Canton Mountain Wind developer and operator Patriot Renewables of Quincy, Mass. 

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Adams said previously that the town will get about $32,000 per year for the fund.

In other news, residents Gus and Molly Elliott complained that an ordinance allowing dogs at the Canton Lake beach is resulting in safety and health issues. They cited problems with dog urine and feces, and dogs getting loose and running into Route 140 over the summer.

The ordinance was approved at a town meeting this spring.

The couple said they have been cleaning and taking care of the beach for the past 12 years and they want to see more families enjoying it.

Adams said they could contact the Planning Board to amend the ordinance, but he was not even sure the town owns the beach.

Administrative Assistant Tina Cagle is researching the ownership and selectmen will notify the Elliots of the result at their next meeting.

In other business, Carol Buzzell of Hartford was hired as deputy town clerk. She was deputy town clerk for Greene for 19 years.

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Gus and Molly Elliott of Canton told selectmen Thursday evening that allowing dogs on the Canton Lake beach has resulted in safety and cleanliness problems. (Marianne Hutchinson/Rumford Falls Times)

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