A group of residents living on the South Shore Road to Hanover Pond have appealed to the Oxford County commissioners to direct the town to provide winter maintenance for the road.

The hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 16, at the Oxford County building in Paris.

Town Clerk Clem Worcester said at least one selectman, several residents who want the maintenance and another group that doesn’t want the maintenance, are expected to attend Tuesday’s hearing.

About eight full-time households live on the South Shore Road. During the past few months, several of them have asked selectmen to provide winter maintenance. Currently, residents of the road contract for private snow plowing.

Selectmen have repeatedly denied the request because of the cost, estimated at about $100,000, needed to bring the road up to standard.

Worcester said residents of the road receive a 5 percent reduction on the valuation of their homes.


Bicentennial quilt

square created

Five women have put their talents and skills together for the creation of a quilt square that will be part of the Oxford County Bicentennial quilt.

Town Clerk Clem Worcester said the design depicts a map of Howard Pond and the brook leading to the Androscoggin River. A mill wheel is positioned between the pond and the river.

Brenda Devoe, Selectman Brenda Gross, Lynn Ramsey, Gail Parent and Deputy Town Clerk Kelly Crockett have been working on the project.

Oxford County will celebrate 200 years as an incorporated county next year. The quilt is one of many activities and events devoted to the celebration.


East B Hill Road

money fails passage

Residents defeated a request to raise about $20,000 for the repair and resurfacing of a section of East B Road at a special town meeting Tuesday night.

Selectman Richard LeComte said the heavy use of the road by logging trucks has resulted in deeply grooved pavement. Had the article been passed, about 2,000 feet of the road would have been paved.

Voters rejected the article 12-5.

“It was a very congenial meeting,” he said.

He said selectmen will meet again to discuss the road to try to determine if there is anything else that can be done. He added that the state plans next year to rebuild a bridge at the bottom of the hill within the town’s maintenance section of the road that could possibly affect its maintenance.

LeComte said there are two year- round homes on the town’s section of the road. Several others are owned by seasonal residents. The East B Road connects Route 26 and Route 5 in Andover.


Cole Block

building painted

For the past two weeks, the historic Cole Block building on Main Street has been getting a new $15,000 makeover.

But that’s only half of the payment to paint two sides of the 50-foot wide by 55-foot tall by 100-foot long structure.

Next year, it will get another $15,000 touch-up to complete the project.

Painting contractor Dennis A. Wheeler said this year’s work is expected to take himself and two employees a month to complete using 200 gallons of yellow and brown paint and black for sashes.

Wheeler said his crew was only contracted to paint two walls this year, which they did, tackling the worst sections – the back and side walls. However, on Wednesday, following complaints by some townspeople, Wheeler and employees Stacy Gordon and Howard Parsons were painting the lower section of the structure’s front wall.

“We were only supposed to do two sides, but everyone was saying, ‘How come you only did the back and sides first instead of the front?'” Wheeler said. “You can’t keep everyone happy.”

The crew also learned that when they first applied a gray primer, some people complained, thinking they were changing the structure’s yellow and brown color scheme.

“I wanted to do the back and side wall first because they were the worst sides. The sun gets at those sides worse than it does on any other side. Plus, those sides are the worst to deal with as far as traffic goes. So we got the worst part out of the way first,” Wheeler said.

That meant that because they were painting a third wall, they wouldn’t get paid for it until next year.

Located at 19 Main St., the Cole Block building, which houses Bethel’s town office, police department and Odeon Hall, is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. It was built in 1891 by architect George M. Coombs, who also built other similar structures in Bethel using the Queen Anne style of architecture.

“It’s a nice old building and it’s got a beautiful hall upstairs, but they don’t use it,” Wheeler added.

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