BUCKFIELD — Selectmen on Tuesday accepted the Fire-Rescue Station Building Committee’s unanimous recommendation to hire H.E. Callahan for construction management services on the $1.2 million station.

Town Manager Dana Lee said Mechanics Falls used the Auburn company on a building project while he was town manager there and it did an excellent job.

Selectman Martha Catevenis said one of her first jobs was with Callahan and she recommended them highly. She abstained from voting because of her former relationship to the company.

Town Treasurer Cynthia Dunn reported on financing for the new station. The  town solicited bids for $1 million loan.

Selectmen had authorized Dunn to obtain a loan from USDA Rural Development, but before the application process was complete, USDA increased its interest rate from 3.5 percent to 4.5 percent.

Dunn went back to Norway Savings Bank, which agreed to honor its bid of 3 percent for the first five years and 4.5 percent for the remaining 15 years.

Selectmen rescinded their previous approval of the USDA loan and authorized Dunn to proceed with Norway Savings Bank. The loan will have a provision for early payment.

Lee reported that the Public Works Department truck fleet is not holding up well. While praising the crew for keeping the vehicles in service, he expects a $30,000 overage in this year’s maintenance budget. He suggests that the selectmen consider replacing trucks in the future.

Selectmen authorized the Library/Librarian Selection Committee to advertise for and interview candidates to replace the library director, who has resigned.

At a previous meeting, selectmen expressed an interest in having the town seal placed on all Public Works trucks. After further discussion Tuesday, they decided to forgo that expense and stick with the town designation already on the trucks.

There will be a meeting with the Budget Committee at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 21, followed by the regular selectmen meeting.

Lee encouraged residents to volunteer for town committees. There is a critical need for members on the Recreation Committee. Openings also exist on the Planning Board, Appeals Board, Social Service Committee, Budget Committee and Roads Committee.

The town is also seeking five members each for the new Ordinance Development Committee and the Economic Development Committee.

Before the meeting adjourned, board Chairman Warren Wright read a letter from his wife to the Buckfield Rescue Department. She broke her leg during the recent ice storm. She thanked the rescue crew for braving the ice to come to her aid. She expressed her appreciation for their service, which she characterized as, “Excellent, professional and compassionate.”


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