BUCKFIELD – Town Manager Glen Holmes clarified Tuesday that selectmen have taken no action to discontinue or abandon any roads in town.

Meeting with selectmen, Holmes was responding to a recent letter published in a weekly newspaper. He said the board has only started the process of gathering the history of the roads in order to settle any legal issues before action is taken. Holmes made it clear that the board had no intention of doing anything that is not in full compliance with the law.

At the May 9 selectmen’s meeting, Holmes presented a list of roads the Road Committee had been researching, but no recommendations about them are ready to be made, he said.

Holmes gave the board an update on two remaining illegal junkyards. He said contempt charges have been filed concerning Roger Bennett’s property at 17 Depot St. and the town’s attorney is requesting updated photos.

The Graham Bell property that abuts the railroad bed Recreation Trail is too wet for Bell to start moving vehicles, but he will keep the town informed on what he intended to do and when, Holmes said.

Holmes said the James Bishop property at 10 Depot St. looked very good, and he considered the matter of junkyard violations closed.

Chairman Oscar Gammon met last week with Maine Department of Transportation officials concerning work on Route 117 that needs construction easement at the park and ride and in front of the Municipal Center. MDOT is paying $750 for this privilege and will return the areas to the same condition as they are presently.

The board signed the Oxford County Sheriff’s Office patrol contract after Holmes said the hourly rate is $2.37 more than last year to cover fuel costs. The contract means the town will have 362 hours of service instead of 380 hours it had last year.

Holmes said the board should look closely next year to see if the fewer hours had a negative effect.

Roger Bennett asked if the town was already paying for this service?

Holmes said the town decided years ago that it would benefit to have more service, particularly on special occasions such as graduations, Halloween and holidays. The deputies patrol for speeders and other traffic violations, among their duties.

Betsy Easton asked Holmes if there was any place Buckfield residents could access a beach. He learned that Turner has an ordinance against nonresidents using its beach.

Judy Berg suggested the town ask Hartford if it would consider sharing its beach.

Selectmen also considered the possibility of making a beach at South Pond because Buckfield has none.


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