Sabattus board orders improvements to Lisbon Road property

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SABATTUS — The Board of Selectmen on Tuesday ordered a Lisbon Road property owner to secure a building that the board determined was dangerous. 

The structure at 69 Lisbon Road owned by Timothy Pulk is an unlicensed multi-family dwelling, subject to demolition in 30 days if no improvements or plans for improvements have been made.

Code Enforcement Officer Dennis Douglass told the board that the building is dangerous because the foundation is failing.

“It’s collapsing,” he said.

He said the roof shingles are deteriorated, there are openings in the exterior walls, an opening to the basement with no door or stairs and an exposed service panel.

Pictures from the interior showed that the back wall of the structure was caving in and at risk of fully collapsing.

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Douglass said there have been issues with the building since Pulk bought the lot in January 2016.

“This has been going on a long time,” Selectman Rick Lacombe said. “You’ve had three years and there’s no evidence of anything being done.

Pulk, who was served a notice of the dangerous building in June, was present for the hearing and was invited to present evidence to the board as to why the building is not a danger or nuisance and should not be demolished.

After hearing Pulk’s argument that he hasn’t had the money to make the renovations, the board decided to give him 30 days to prove he has a plan to make it a safe building.

“If he comes in with proof of plans to fix the building and the financing to complete those plans, then we won’t demolish it,” Duquette said.

Pulk was informed that the first step in saving the building is to have a licensed structural engineer assess what needs to be fixed and how. Pulk could appeal the board’s decision to Superior Court within 30 days.

The second motion made Tuesday was for Pulk to secure the building as soon as possible and ensure that no one is living there.

According to Police Chief Gary Baillargeon and past police reports, there is evidence of people living in the structure while Pulk has been the owner. The building is not licensed to house anyone who is not a direct family member of the owner.

“There is evidence that the structure has been or is being used as an unlicensed boarding home,” Douglass said.

If Pulk is unable to secure the building, the town has authorization to secure it for him.

In other business, John Dalbec was sworn in as school resource officer. Dalbec was hired by the Police Department on July 9 and has more than 30 years of experience in law enforcement working for the Cumberland Police Department.

The board also awarded the road financing bond and Webster Mill financing bond to the Machias Savings Bank. The bank offered each at an interest rate of 2.95 percent. Both projects were approved at town meeting in May.

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