Paris to hold public hearing on ATV use Monday

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PARIS — Selectmen will hold a public hearing before Monday’s board meeting on whether to allow ATV use on Parsons Road temporarily for the month of June.

The public hearing is a stipulation of the town’s new policy for nonstandard use of public roads and property. The X-tra Mile ATV Club has applied to use the road for a month while they construct an alternate trail that would circumvent Parsons Road residents opposed to permanent ATV use near their home.

ATV club trailmaster John Goodwin said ATV season begins in June, and he wants assurance that riders could access the full trail system while he and other members work on the workaround trail, set to open in July.

James and Paula Hakala, two Parsons Road residents who opposed ATV use near their home, said at the May 9 meeting that they supported the idea, because after a month the ATVs would avoid their home completely.

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The work to complete the nonstandard use application led to an argument at the May 9 meeting, as Goodwin wanted immediate permission before beginning work on the new trail. Eventually, he agreed to wait for the May 23 meeting to complete the public hearing requirement.

The ATV club previously announced they had an alternate route that used a small stretch of Parsons Road. Because it was less than 300 yards, it would not have required permission from the town.

Selectmen will also discuss approving the 2012 budget proposed by the Budget Committee. At the May 9 meeting, Selectmen Ted Kurtz and Jean Smart opposed the budget. Kurtz felt the budget was too high and said he hadn’t been convinced a requested highway truck was necessary.

Smart thought the budget should include $15,000 requested by Norway-Paris Solid Waste.

Because selectman Lloyd “Skip” Herrick was absent, the board lacked a majority needed to approve the budget.

Town Manager Phil Tarr said he will prepare an alternate budget with $15,000 allocated for Norway-Paris Solid Waste removed in small amounts from other line items. He also plans to present an argument as to why the budgeted highway truck is necessary.

Also on the budget is a presentation on Smart Meters by Suzanne Bussiere, customer service adviser for Central Maine Power.

The agenda also includes discussion on exchanging the town’s old street sweeper for a parking lot plow with the town of Dixfield and discussion on a request by the Paris Fire Department to buy a heavy-duty dryer for turnout gear.

treaves@sunjournal.com

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