SUMNER – The Wind Power Committee met Tuesday night to review a draft option agreement with KEAN Project Engineering Inc. of Turner.

The company is seeking an agreement to allow it to test meteorological conditions on a 114-acre town parcel on Mollyockett Mountain off Redding Road. It also wants an option to lease the site for construction of a three-turbine wind farm to produce up to 5 megawatts of electricity, if conditions prove acceptable.

The committee will ask KEAN to attend its meeting at 5:30 p.m. March 24 to discuss revisions to the draft agreement.

There will be a public informational meeting and “straw vote” at 7 p.m. March 31 in the Town Office.

Committee member and Selectman Mark Silber explained that the meeting was needed to let townspeople know what the committee was considering and to gauge opinions.

“It makes people part of the process” and is consistent with Sumner’s open style of government, he said. Silber said there is no sense in investing more effort in the project if there is significant opposition to it.

In preparation for the meeting, committee members Bob Runes will investigate agreements used by other towns with wind farms and George Jones will collect data on environmental issues on wind farms.

After the committee’s meeting, selectmen held their session and announced that the owners of the Palmer property on Barrows Road have 30 days to pay more than $3,000 in back taxes. If they don’t, the town will assume ownership of the house and one-third acre of land. The owners have not used the house as a full-time residence since they purchased it.

Town Clerk Susan Runes reported that 82 percent of property taxes have been paid. County taxes are up by $3,471 over last year.

Road Commissioner Jim Keach said he has posted roads to a 23,000-pound limit until May 18.

The board approved allowing people to register boats online. They also reviewed a draft policy for reimbursement of business mileage.

Selectman Mary Ann Haxton announced that March 22 will be Maine Maple Sunday and her A Wrinkle in Thyme Farm will be open to visitors from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. She will be serving silver dollar pancakes with maple syrup.


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