Hartford OKs money to fix camp road


HARTFORD — The Board of Selectmen agreed Thursday night to have road commissioner Jeremy Johnson make Haskell Road passable so camp owner Don Haskell could get to his property.

The decision ends weeks of discussion about who was responsible for maintaining the road, which is off Swan Pond Road in the southern part of town.

Haskell told the board in March that for years he maintained the road in lieu of a portion of his taxes, but the town stopped that agreement and failed to cut his taxes or maintain the road. He said the only way to get to his hunting camp was by four wheel drive.

He asked the town to add some gravel so he can get to his property.

Selectman Lee Holman said she thought the town was morally obligated to do some work on the road and repeatedly asked Johnson how many loads of gravel would be necessary. He said it could take any number.

Selectman Zoe Cowett said the town may be morally obligated, but they had no money.

Selectman Jack Plumley said if they agreed to do the work, it would open Pandora’s box to other requests for work on old roads.

Holman said such roads were made by teams of oxen and the sweat of the brow, and she didn’t think they should let history go by abandoning them.

“We should put a little amount of work every now and then to keep them passable,” she said.

The board voted to have Johnson use up to $600 from his road budget to help make the road passable.

A resident on Sam Annis and Ricker Hill roads had requested that ditches be filled in that she had requested be opened a few years back.

The issue was tabled until Plumley could check with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection to see if the area was actually a wetland.

Kyle Haley was present to ask the town to pay the cost of material to do more work on the road to his log home at the end of Gurney Hill Road.

Haley said he had done thousands of dollars worth of work on his road and run out of money. He said water was running down the hill from the cemetery and he had already put in a culvert.

The board voted to have Johnson spend $600 and work with Haley to get the road fixed.

Holman explained that the last Hartford Newsletter from the present editor and committee is in print.

“The newsletter is not dead. We have several interested people willing to take over the newsletter and it should continue,” Holman said.

She said they could use more people to make sure the newsletter continued. Those interested should contact a selectman or the town office.

The board signed the plumbing fee ordinance, which will go to a vote at the annual town meeting June 16.