No hunting zone approved in Jay

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JAY — Selectmen unanimously voted Monday to prohibit hunting on a portion of the town’s 200 acres of recreation land located behind the schools.

Recreation Committee Chairman Rob Taylor, who is also a Jay teacher, is spearheading the effort to develop the land into a multitrail network and establish educational components.

Schoolchildren use some of the property to learn about nature and the environment.

Taylor estimated that hunting would be off limits within 1,000 feet of the athletic fields. The boundary would go straight across the property from where the cell phone tower is located.

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It is illegal to shoot a firearm of within 500 feet of a school and within 300 feet of a residence, Taylor told the board.

Signs will be posted to the effect of “School Safety Zone: No Hunting,” he said, after the board approved the measure.

In other business, selectmen voted to accept the Sewer Committee’s recommendation to continue one more year to charge sewer users on a per unit flat rate and to not charge municipal buildings, including schools, sewer user fees.

Currently users are charged $290 for each residence to help offset the operation and maintenance portion of the sewer budget. Taxation covers the remainder and debt service.

The committee wants to study the option of going from a flat rate fee to charging for sewer on how much water each residence uses. The year will give the committee time to educate the public on the option selected.

Selectmen also agreed to spend up to $3,000 on a new software program for the transfer station to keep better track of data, receipts and billing among other pertinent information. The program itself will cost $2,700 but there may be additional costs to connect the system.

In another matter, the board also voted to enter into a contract with John E. O’Donnell Associates Inc. to do industrial valuations at a cost of $16,000. The firm also does the residential and business assessments for the town.

Selectmen also approved interim Fire Chief Randy Berry’s recommendations for interim appointments to officer positions to allow further study of bylaw changes or changes in the department‘s organizational structure.

Appointed were Richard Duguay, assistant chief Station 1; Tim Toothaker, assistant chief, Station 2; Scott Shink, training coordinator; Richard Cook, safety officer; Noel Brown, emergency management agency director; and Mike Booker, captain, Station 1.

“I have not made a recommendation on captain for Station 2 and that is only because I have not had time to thoroughly review that decision and interview members,” Berry wrote in a memo to the board. “There were no applications on hand.”

“The last year and a half has been a lot of chaos, hate and discontent,” Selectman Tim DeMillo said. “I’m not sure some of those appointments address that … I think it is appropriate there is not a captain at Station 2.”

There was some controversy within the department last year that included a captain being demoted to an officer and the fire chief resigning from the position on his own accord.

Selectmen also voted to extend the propane contract for the town office for one year with Group Adams Propane Services in Livermore Falls. The company put a cap on the maximum amount the town would pay at $2.529 a gallon.

The board also had a presentation by “6 Chics and a Dude,” the Jay Middle School LEGO League Team that won first place for robot performance and overall champion at a state competition on Dec. 12, 2009. The team’s presentation highlights the dangers of distracted driving.

dperry@sunjournal.com

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