LIVERMORE FALLS — Selectman Alphonso Barker asked fellow board members Monday to reconsider their action on investigating alternate law enforcement contracts.

He also wanted them to invite the Androscoggin County commissioners to the next meeting.

He doesn’t believe the voters’ will was carried out when the board voted overwhelmingly in June 2010 to have selectmen investigate alternate contracts for police coverage, Barker said prior to the meeting.

According to state law, Barker said, it should be the voters who make the decision on police coverage since they voted to have selectmen look into it.

However, Town Manager Kristal Flagg said Tuesday that none of the selectmen made the motion to bring the issue up again.

Barker could not make the motion because he was absent from the Jan. 24 meeting when selectmen voted to disband a committee that was looking into collecting alternate figures on a contract to provide police services from the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Department. Selectmen decided to keep the local force and find ways to cut costs without jeopardizing public safety.

“The board decided that we met the vote to check out other police departments,” select board Chairman Bill Demaray said Jan. 25. “We don’t think that shutting our department down will save us any money, so we voted to stop talking to the Sheriff’s Department and see if we can make our police department as cost efficient as possible.”

Selectmen used a copy of the Sheriff’s Department’s contract with Poland as a basis for their decision, Flagg said.

Livermore Falls police Chief Ernest Steward had obtained a copy of the contract and submitted it to selectmen in December after he did some comparisons. Based on the contract and using the numbers that were being applied in Poland, Steward said in December that the Androscoggin County department’s services would cost the town more than it pays now.

Under a town meeting form of government, the duty of the municipal officers is to “execute” the will of the people as that will has been expressed at a town meeting, Barker said prior to Monday‘s meeting. The municipal officers (either elected or appointed) are the chief executive officers, he said.

Barker said the Androscoggin County commissioners never provided the board with any figures and were preparing to do so.

Androscoggin County Commission Chairman Randall Greenwood said Monday prior to the board meeting that the commissioners had not presented any figures, estimates or contracts for discussion or comparisons for a possible contract to police Livermore Falls.

“We did have an initial meeting with Selectmen Barker and (Jim) Collins and a Budget Committee member attended,” Greenwood said. “The commissioners and Sheriff (Guy) Desjardins had a scheduled workshop for further clarification and discussion.”

However the commissioners did receive a call from Town Manager Kristal Flagg indicating the board had decided not to pursue the police contract with the county any further, Greenwood said.

So a follow-up discussion did not occur, he said.

Barker indicated he was asking the board to reconsider the Jan. 24 action, Greenwood said.

“However, the commissioners will not be pursuing this matter unless the board is interested in pursuing a possible contract,” Greenwood said.

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