Selectmen discuss future of old Peru Elementary School


PERU — More decisions are being made about the future of the old Peru Elementary School.

In November, residents voted to use $170,000 from the town’s surplus fund to bring the old, town-owned schoolhouse up to code so it can be used by businesses and for other purposes and activities.

The Board of Selectmen discussed the former school’s future Monday night, including talk of contracting with the Friends of Peru Elementary School, or FPES, to manage the building.

When Selectwoman Lynda Hebert suggested the board lease the community center space at the school, the response was mixed.

“The town is not in the leasing business or renting business,” Selectman Larry Snowman said.

Selectwoman Carol Roach said she had gathered a list of Oxford contractors whom the selectmen will consider for building upgrades, including a new sprinkler system, repairs to the elevator and bringing the structure into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The town and FPES are scheduled to meet at 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Town Hall to negotiate a contract for the building’s use.

In other matters, Fire Chief William Hussey told the board he is in the process of having the town become a Community Point of Distribution. CPOD is a program created by the Federal Emergency Management Agency that provides disaster relief, including bottled water and food. It would be staged at the Town Hall, and supplies would come from Mountain Valley High School in Rumford, the distribution point for northern Maine.

The chief also requested $3,500 from the town’s surplus for paving at the Fire Department. Selectmen denied the request, saying “voters had not approved an article that said that the money can be carried forward or that the money can be used beyond the fiscal year,” according to Roach.

Road Commissioner Bradley Hutchings told selectmen the early snow has affected the town’s snow removal budget, a quarter of which has already been spent.

Hutchings also reported the state will pave Greenwoods Road, and that he has submitted to the state suggestion for what need be done to the road.

“It needs more than just an overlay,” Snowman said.

The town is taking bids to sell a 1999 Ford F-550. Bidding will close at 5 p.m. Monday, Dec. 17. Selectmen will then open the bids when they meet at 5:30 p.m.

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