Kingfield takes stock of equipment

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KINGFIELD — Selectmen spent much of their meeting Monday evening discussing budget priorities for 2017-18, including planning for replacement of heavy equipment.

According to Public Works Director Brian Collins, a representative of a Maine branch of Tampa-based Nortrax Inc. looked at the department’s 11-year-old loader and proposed an estimated $51,500 trade-in and a lease-purchase option for a new one.

Collins suggested that paying approximately $24,000 over five years would give the town trouble-free new equipment that would be under warranty and maintained by Nortrax Inc.

Selectman Wade Browne asked Collins to provide an assessment of all the department’s heavy equipment to determine which pieces might need more expensive repairs. He also wanted to see a timeline that would give taxpayers a realistic view of future expenditures.

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“We haven’t an official review of all of this equipment yet,” Browne said.

He suggested hiring someone do that appraisal and provide a report.

“The town should have someone evaluate all of the equipment,” he said. “It won’t cost that much to have all of that done.”

Another spending priority is Webster Hall, which needs maintenance and repairs. Selectmen agreed to start a list of priorities for budgeting purposes and approved contractor Brian Emery to fix a hole and leaks in the roof.

Selectmen also reviewed requests for nonprofit groups, clubs and community organizations but no figures were given.

Final recommendations will be passed to the Budget Committee, and voters will decide amounts at the annual town meeting June 3.

Selectmen announced there will be a Planning Board hearing on construction of a Dollar General store at the north end of town. It is set for 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 11, at Webster Hall.

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