JAY — Selectpersons voted Monday to allow police Chief Larry White Sr. to use $4,167 from a reserve account to buy body armor for police to protect them from rifle fire.

The vests with built-in plates weigh 7.4 pounds, he said.

He has been trying to upgrade equipment as he goes along, he said, but the protective gear is very expensive.

If the officers are going into active shooter situations, they need more protection, White said.

Police will still wear their standard protective vests, but take along the vests with armor plates in case the need to wear them arises, White said.

In other business, selectpersons voted to authorize use of the name “Whispering Lane” for a private road. It is located off East Dixfield Road, also known as Route 17 in North Jay.

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In other action, the board voted to authorize Town Manager Ruth Cushman to solicit requests for bids for the town audit.

It has been a long time since the town put the audit out for bid, she said, at least 11 years by her estimation. Traditionally, towns put the audit out to bid every four or five years, she said.

“We are very happy with the auditor we’ve got, but all of us in the Town Office agree it is time to go out for bids,” she said.

Selectpersons decided to cancel the Nov. 11 meeting due to the Veterans Day holiday. Instead, they agreed to hold a selectpersons’ meeting that will open in public session and go directly into executive session to hold a workshop on union negotiations and possibly legal issues.

The town will begin negotiations with union groups in January 2014, Cushman said.

In another matter, Board of Selectpersons Chairperson Steve McCourt said that a crew from Howie’s Welding and Fabrication in North Jay did some work on a fence at Birchland Cemetery on Route 17.

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Selectperson Tim DeMillo is an owner of the business and did not charge for the work, McCourt said.

The fence was leaning, and putting in braces to keep it straight was among the repairs. The soil around the fence is sandy and probably will need more work in years to come.

“It should be good for a while,” DeMillo said.

Cushman tasked the board to fill a regular position on the Board of Assessment Review and two alternate positions that are also empty.

“I really need you guys to get on that,” she said.

McCourt gave fellow selectpersons an update on the building that will house the snowmobile purchased to groom trails on the recreation lot.

McCourt said selectpersons and a couple of volunteers finished building. McCourt closed it in on Monday, and it awaits metal roofing and doors.

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