DIXFIELD — Selectmen on Monday gave the go-ahead to Chairwoman Bettina Martin and Selectman Norine Clarke to continue negotiations for a new contract with the Mexico Sewer District.

The two women have been negotiating with the sewer district for several weeks on the costs and other matters for continuing use of the sewer main for Dixfield residents.

At the last negotiating session on Aug. 17, Martin said the sewer district trustees presented two options:

• Pay 100 percent of costs from the force main that runs under the Webb River Bridge to approximately Duntile Street in Mexico, then 50 percent of costs from there to the sewerage treatment plant; or

• Pay a staggered amount of costs from the sewer main to the sewerage treatment plant.

The two sides also agreed to negotiate a five- to seven-year contract, and to create a new sewer administrative board that would include Dixfield representatives.

The most recent 30-year contract expired last year.

Clarke and Martin will meet again with sewer trustees on Sept. 7, then return to the Board of Selectmen after that date for continued discussion and a possible agreement.

Town Manager Eugene Skibisky said other issues will also be worked out, such as how costs might change if additional housing were developed on the Mexico side of the river. Right now, about 550 Dixfield customers use the force main, and just six from Mexico.

In a related matter, Skibisky said the state has agreed to hold onto a $250,000 grant for replacement of the sewer main under the Webb River Bridge. That replacement, and an agreement between Dixfield and the Mexico Sewer District, is required when the bridge is replaced by the Maine Department of Transportation. The bridge replacement had been scheduled for this construction year, but was delayed because of a shortage of state funds, and lack of an agreement between Dixfield and the Mexico Sewer District.

In other matters, the board approved the appointment of David Hodgson as the town’s fourth police officer. The Dixfield resident has had previous experience in police work, and has served as a reserve officer for Dixfield. He replaces Charles Beale.

In another police matter, the board also approved the purchase of a 2009 four wheel drive Ford Expedition for $26,565, for patrol. Chief Richard Pickett said a four wheel drive was needed to reach some parts of town.

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New Dixfield police officer David Hodgson was appointed by selectmen Monday night. With Hodgson’s appointment, the department is at four full-time officers.


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