CANTON — Selectmen have scheduled a public hearing next month on a proposed water rate increase.

Donald Hutchins, chairman of the Canton Water District board of trustees, told selectmen Monday that a 30 percent increase is being proposed.

The current rate is $105.27 per quarter for residential customers, Water District Superintendent Debbie Hutchins said Thursday night. The increase is to cover operating expenses, she said. The last increase was several years ago.

The Water District has 115 customers, she said.

Hutchins is the wife of Donald Hutchins, who serves with Robert Turnbull and Barbara Dolloff on the board of trustees.

The hearing is set for 5:30 p.m. Nov. 14 at the Town Office.

In other business:

* Administrative Assistant Harry Childs told the board the town had received a check from Victorian Villa Rehabilitation & Living Center for expenses related to rags plugging the sewer system.

Donald Hutchins, who is also a selectman, told the board that the 1975 Engine 1 was in bad shape and probably couldn’t pass an inspection. Engine 2 is down for repairs, so the only available firetruck is the tanker.

“It’s time to start thinking about a new firetruck,” he said.

Childs said it would probably run between $300,000 and $350,000 for a used one. He will try to get some numbers for the board to study.

Hutchins said the highway trucks are in good shape.

* Diane Ray gave the board an update on the Girl Scouts community garden. The community helped the Scouts get the ground in planting condition and fertilizer was donated.

The Scouts harvested 60 pounds of carrots, which they donated to the home economics department at Dirigo High School in Dixfield and a local food pantry, Ray said. They froze some food, canned salsa and made carrot cakes.

The Scouts learned about pests in the garden and the need for scarecrows after the crows ate all of the corn they planted.

Tom Adley has offered to help organize and be technical adviser for next year’s garden, Ray said. She said they have a five-year plan for the garden, which is in the flood plain.

* Donald Hutchins reported that the Maine Department of Environmental Protection has issued a good report on the land around the Canton dam where a tannery once operated. He said 90 percent of the base is down in preparation for paving.

* Selectman Lisa Cummings announced that all artificial flowers should be removed from cemeteries by Nov. 1.

Staff Editor Mary Delamater contributed to this report.

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