NEW GLOUCESTER — Selectmen on Monday dedicated the 214th Annual Town Report to resident Jean Libby.

Libby, a 50-year resident of the town and a graduate of New Gloucester High School, currently serves as chairman of the New Gloucester Planning Board where she has been a member since 1995.

“Jean has treated applicants fairly and with consistent respect,” Selectman Nathaniel Berry said. “She has fought hard for landowner rights since 1998.”

Since 1990, Libby has been a member of the town’s Capital Improvement Plan Committee that reviews and ranks costly spending projects and advises selectmen.

Libby also has fought for landowner rights with all proposed ordinance revisions on the Land Management Planning Committee since 1998, Berry said.

In the local community, Libby is a trustee for the New Gloucester Historical Society.

She and her husband, Edwin, are the parents of two adult sons. Her son Stephen Libby, is chairman of the Board of Selectmen, and son Donald Libby is a former Planning Board member and currently a member of the Land Management Committee and the Board of Appeals.

In other business, the board approved submitting an $8,000 grant proposal to the Cumberland County Community Development Block Grant program to fund an income survey of households in the Upper Village.

The income survey will determine the town’s eligibility to apply for construction funding for a public water project in Upper Gloucester.

Households will be identified that are eligible for CDBG assistance to hook-up to a new water system after it has been constructed.

The proposal will help determine the total number of households that are interested in hooking up to a new municipal water supply system for planning purposes.

CDBG has recommended that New Gloucester contract services, if approved, with Maine Rural Water Association.

In November, selectmen approved spending up to $50,000 in an effort to find a public water supply for residents and businesses in the Upper Gloucester area.

For two decades, the town has supplied bottled drinking water to homes and businesses that have private wells contaminated by salt from a historic open sand/salt pile. Other wells have been contaminated with benzene from leaking underground gasoline tanks and the chemical MTBE used as an additive to gasoline.

In Upper Gloucester, 26 households have contaminated water supplies.

Efforts to find safe drinking water are a priority for the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, which supplies filtration and aeration systems to households with benzene contamination.

The Upper Gloucester public water supply, if approved in the future, will supply water to roughly 70 households and business establishments.

New Gloucester has no public drinking water system or public sewer system.

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