OXFORD – Four-way stop signs may be installed on Robinson Hill Road if the Oxford Board of Selectmen adopts a new traffic control ordinance.

The board on Thursday approved a draft of the ordinance, which will be the subject of a public hearing before it is considered for adoption at the board’s next meeting, Aug. 18.

Police Chief Ron Kugell said the document principally lists existing stop and yield signs in town. Without it, he said, the state does not consider any traffic violations involving the signs to be enforceable.

Kugell said Town Manager Michael Chammings told him, “Over 90 percent of the communities in the state, if someone challenged them, they can’t enforce a stop sign because they don’t have the enabling ordinance.”

Chammings said a few new stop signs were proposed as part of the ordinance, including those that would go on Robinson Hill Road at Paine and Whittemore roads. “We knew that one section was going to generate the most discussion on (the ordinance).”

Former Selectman Lois Pike said people driving down the hill in winter often have a hard time stopping. If a sign is there and a driver can’t stop, she said, they’re going to be held responsible for any accident.

Kugell said he didn’t know whether four-way stop signs at the intersection are the right answer, but said something needs to be done.

Chammings said another change included in the proposed ordinance would be four-way stop signs for an intersection on Sam Rowe Hill Road.

Selectmen voted 5-0 to sign the ordinance and present it to the public.

The board also reviewed a proposal for an engineer’s assessment and list of repair options for Welchville Dam. Kleinschmidt Energy & Water Resource Consultants of Pittsfield gave an estimate of $8,000 for the work.

Resident Tom Cushman asked whether the town could get an estimate on what it would cost to fix the dam before going forward with the full assessment. “I hate like hell to spend $8,000 to find out it’s gonna cost me $200,000,” he said.

Chammings offered to call the company and find out how much that estimate would cost.

Asked how the town would regulate the dam in the meantime, Chairman Floyd Thayer said there will not be any changes.


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