ROXBURY — Selectmen learned Tuesday night that Central Maine Power Co. has acknowledged that it has more than $7 million of taxable property in town and will pay taxes on it.
That means Roxbury will receive a check this year for $39,629.90 for the company's new substation and portion of transmission line improvements relating to Record Hill Wind LLC's 22-turbine wind farm, John Sutton, board chairman, said.
"I'm glad it's finally settled," he said after reading into the record a letter dated Oct. 23, 2012, from Stephen F. Holt, lead analyst on local tax for Iberdrola USA Management Corp. of New Gloucester. The letter was sent to Roxbury's assessing agent Robert B. Stevens Jr. and to selectmen. CMP is a subsidiary of Iberdrola.
Holt wrote that as of April 1, 2012, CMP estimated the taxable value of the substation and portion of powerline improvements in Roxbury at $7,060,000.
"We thank you and the board for your patience while we investigated our records and sought additional confirmation from those involved in the project," Holt said.
He said the property would also be reported in the normal manner in CMP's property tax declaration starting with the 2013 property year.
Sutton and Selectmen Timothy Derouche and Mike Worthley thanked tax collector Renee Hodsdon for catching the oversight on CMP's part.
"That was nice," Sutton said. "We finally got CMP to realize they had a $7 million project here."
In related news, Sutton told town officials and residents at the meeting that he took a telephone inquiry from someone interested in putting four wind turbines on North Twin Mountain. He said the person didn't identify a developer or company. The area is south of Route 120 and the Record Hill project.
Now that wind turbines are in Roxbury's future, selectmen also learned the town needs to redo its 1993 Comprehensive Plan.
To that end, the board advertised this past spring and recently for people willing to serve on a comprehensive plan committee, but only one person responded, Sutton said.
That's why the board sought advice on law changes since 1993 and insight into how to rework the document to govern the future of the town from John Maloney of the Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments.
"When we did the Comprehensive Plan in 1993, wind turbines were not even on the horizon," Sutton said.
Maloney said back then communication towers were starting to become the only thing looming to consider.
Sutton said the town wasn't going to redo the plan until it had raised the necessary money, which it did earlier this year.
"We've advertised in the paper twice and we only have one volunteer," he said.
"That's not uncommon," said Maloney, who presented the board with documents that outline how to create a comprehensive plan. He also told the board it should have five to seven people willing to serve on the committee who can meet monthly.
Maloney said he would help the committee as an adviser. "I'm not here being a salesman, because if I was, I wouldn't be a planner," Maloney said.
In Maine, comprehensive plans adopted by towns from 1994 to 1996 will expire by the end of 2012, he said.
"Rumford is in the same boat as you are," Maloney said. However, he added, Rumford, which intends to seek more grants than Roxbury, is trying to redo its Comprehensive Plan to meet grant requirements.
In other business, Selectman Michael Worthley reminded residents that the town office has recycling bins for them to use. They can have one per household.