Town to contribute to Spruce Mountain drainage project

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LIVERMORE FALLS — Selectmen voted Monday to contribute up to $2,000 for a drainage project at Spruce Mountain Ski slope that should help save the parking lot at the bottom of the mountain.

Jay and Livermore town officials voted last week in each town to contribute up to $2,000. Jay’s money will come out of its recreation reserve account; Livermore’s out of its maintenance budget; and Livermore Falls out of a grounds account. The first two votes were contingent on all three towns participating.

The towns jointly own the mountain and buildings. The Spruce Mountain Ski Club owns all the equipment and operates the ski slope.

The Maine Army National Guard will have nine to 13 members at the mountain for nine or 10 days to do some much needed work on the drainage and two or three other projects, Club President Ken Jacques told Livermore Falls selectmen.

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They will use the project as a training mission, he said.

There has been an issue with spring drainage for several years, Jacques said. The water builds up and flushes the parking lot into the Androscoggin River, Jacques said.

They plan to install a couple of catch basins and run some drainage pipe. The runoff would be diverted away from the lot and river, Jacques said. He has worked with the Guard, Maine Department of Environmental Protection, Main-Land Development Consultants Inc., and Jay Highway Foreman John Johnson to develop a plan, he said.

The Guard plans to camp at the site between June 13 to June 24. They will bring in most of the heavy equipment and supply the labor and fuel, he said, but the nonprofit organization needs to supply material.

Jacques, a former selectmen, said he knows the issue should go before the town but time is of the essence.

Town Manager Kristal Flagg said that each town’s highway crew that takes turns plowing the area has a difficult time in the parking lot.

“We are very fortunate to get this kind of assistance,” Jacques said. “It’s a big deal. It is extremely hard to get the Guard for jobs like this.”

Flagg also thanked the Livermore Falls Downtown Betterment Group for doing a clean up day in front of the town office and other areas. Jacques said the group plans to make sure the sidewalks are clean before History Night on Friday, May 27. This year’s theme is sports history in Jay and Livermore Falls.

In another matter, selectmen voted 3-1 with Jim Collins opposed and Alphonso Barker absent, to pay an additional $1,100 to Jackie Knight of Livermore Falls. She was awarded the contract for the cleaning at the town office, police station and bathroom at the fire station.

The money is for extra work she did above the contract, Flagg said. She took care of the trash at the municipal building and around the gazebo and hauled it to transfer station, Flagg said. She also picked up supplies for the town office and other departments.

“It figures out to be $25 a week,” Chairman Bill Demaray said. “It doesn’t seem excessive. The only thing is I wish we had followed the contract.”

There needed to be a written change order for each change, he said.

She had permission to do the extra work from former Town Manager Jim Chaousis but it was never written down, Demaray said.

“I’d say we’ve learned our lesson,” Selectman Louise Chabot said, and next time we’ll adhere to the contract.

Chaousis eliminated the building and grounds worker in the current budget and contracted out the work.

Collins said he didn’t like someone who has a contract do more work than what was outlined and expect to get paid.

“I just don’t like the deal,” he said.

dperry@sunjournal.com

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