BUCKFIELD – Town Manager Glen Holmes told selectmen Tuesday night that the town has received a letter saying Roger Bennett was denied his appeal to the courts.

Bennett has contended that a section of the railroad bed near his property that is a snowmobile trail is his property and he didn’t want a guardrail installed.

The town says it owns the property. Holmes said the town will put up the guardrail as soon as the spring thaw arrives, and the court will also rule the property belongs to the town.

In another case involving Graham Bell, Holmes said Bell had a contractor do considerable cleanup last summer at his junkyard, but the work is not finished. The town attorney will take over the case if Bell has not completed the cleanup by July 15. The fine will be $1,000 if the property is not cleared of junk.

Holmes told selectmen that Buckfield and Hartford have received a homeland security grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for $6,981. The money will be used for radios and identification vests. The radios will allow towns to communicate with local, state and federal agencies that respond in emergency situations.

Selectmen took no action on the financial report until they study it, but Treasurer Cindy Dunn said the town is in good shape. She said property taxes were slow coming in and the excise tax is lower this year. She said people were not buying new cars or were buying smaller vehicles.

Holmes said a law will be voted on next November that would cut the excise tax in half. “If this happens, the property tax will have to go up because the excise tax only pays for half of the road budget as it is,” Holmes said.

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