OTISFIELD — Voters at Thursday night’s public hearing will have an opportunity to learn what’s in the proposed $2.1 million budget and details on proposed changes to the Wireless Telecommunications Facilities Ordinance and Building ordinances.

The hearing begins at 7 p.m. June 11 at the Community Hall on Route 121.

The budget, ordinances and other matters will be decided at the annual town meeting at 9 a.m. Saturday, June 27, also at the Community Hall.

The 2015-16 budget is $408,504 more than this fiscal year. It includes increases for public safety, cemeteries, employee benefits and road equipment reserves.

Fueling the increase is a $34,000 request for the town’s share of designing the Pleasant Lake Dam in Casco and a request for $408,000 for capital improvements to Powhattan Road.

The dam controls the level of water in the 4-mile-long lake, which lies in both towns. The lake has private camps, cottages and homes along it, as well as the Seeds of Peace International Camp on the western shore and Camp Arcadia for Girls on the eastern shore, both in Otisfield.


Casco and Otisfield selectmen received a report from the Maine Emergency Management Agency last year that said there is significant leakage and structural deterioration at the dam. Town boards, along with Peter Barber, president of the Pleasant Lake Association, and others have been meeting since September 2014 to discuss how to resolve the problem.

Officials say the dam, which is in Casco but owned by both towns, is leaking as much as 1,000 gallons of water per minute in at least three places. Attempts to keep the water from undermining the structure have been difficult.

Both towns will face significant fines from the Department of Environmental Protection if the dam fails.

The request for $408,000 for improvements to Powhattan Road is the backup plan the Road Committee intends to present to town meeting voters, if its initial request for a bond to fix five roads fails to voter approval.

The Road Committee told selectmen in May that it will recommend annual town meeting voters approve a $1.73 million bond to reconstruct and repair parts of Powhattan, Rayville, Bell Hill, Peaco and Gore roads over a two-year period.

Voters will also be informed about proposed changes to the Wireless Telecommunications Facilities Ordinance, including the appeal process. The proposal moves appeals directly to Superior Court, not the Appeals Board.

Voters will also be told about proposed changes to the Building Ordinance that involve setbacks for structures.


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