Selectmen reject Katrina couple’s request for land to relocate trailer

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CANTON – Before they sign a buyout agreement for their village home in the Androscoggin River flood zone, Tom and Jolene Adley asked selectmen Thursday night for a building site on town land on Jewett Hill Road.

When the board turned down their request, Tom Adley said they would go to another town.

The incident was the latest in the town’s saga to buy damaged homes in the village and establish a new town center after a major flood in December 2003. There are between 40 and 50 homes in the flood zone to be purchased, and the new town center on 30 acres off Route 108 along Edmunds Road is a long way from having lots available for homeowners to relocate.

The 10 acres on Jewett Hill Road was acquired by the town for nonpayment of taxes.

There was much discussion Thursday night on whether the town should sell the entire piece or try to subdivide it.

Selectman Richard Ray said developing a subdivision required a lot of money, and he thought the parcel should be sold to someone else to divide.

Selectman Donald Hutchins disagreed that there would be problems with the town subdividing, and said he was looking to make money for the town.

Selectman Lisa Cummings said the board couldn’t just let the Adleys buy a portion of the lot, which is what they desire.

“It should go out to bid to everyone,” she said.

“There is no easy way to sell you a piece of this property without going out to bid,” Hutchins told the couple.

The Adleys said they want to stay in Canton, but Tom Adley said as he left the meeting, “I’m going to run to another town.”

Selectmen said they regret not having a solution for people in the buyout who have no place to go.

Chairman Jackie Conant suggested they put the Jewett Hill land decision on hold, and have a special selectmen’s meeting on Tuesday, May 16, for further discussion.

In other business, paving bids were opened and a contract was awarded to Pike Industries for $52.80 per ton of asphalt with the stipulation that Road Commissioner Craig Gammon oversee the work. Pike’s bid was lowest.

A demolition contract for removal of village homes was given to Almighty Waste for $106,000.

Spring cleanup is scheduled for May 17-26 during regular dump hours. Residents may bring wood, metal, white metal, auto or window glass, roofing material, furniture and tires for an additional fee.

No universal waste will be allowed.

Swimming lessons are scheduled for July 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 10, 12 and 14.

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