FARMINGTON — The Board of Selectmen on Tuesday unanimously appointed Ryan Morgan as an interim Regional School Unit 9 director and reconsidered the permanent weight limit for Porter Hill Road adopted last month.

Acknowledging the difficulty of choosing from three good applicants for the interim position created by Claire Andrews’ resignation, board members supported Morgan, who has served as a selectman and chairman of that board.

Douglas Dunlap and Scott Erb also applied to serve until the March 2016 town meeting, when voters will elect a representative. 

Morgan, who attended the board meeting, said he worked on the town side of budgeting and wanted to see the other side. 

“We have to work together for the healthy growth of this community,” Morgan said of the school district and town.

At their Aug. 25 meeting, board members voted 3-1 to set a permanent weight limit of 80,000 pounds for the newly constructed Porter Hill Road.

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After more thought and a few phone calls, Board of Selectmen Chairman Joshua Bell said he felt the board should revisit the decision.

The town could approach the logging businesses using the road and ask them to use another road, he said. 

Town Manager Richard Davis reminded the board that the reason for the weight limit was to protect the new construction and the town’s investment in the road. The town is spending $300,000 on the road over a couple years. 

During construction this summer, numerous logging trucks, with estimated weights of 100,000 pounds, have been seen using the road to carry wood from Temple to the chip plant located off Town Farm Road.

Engineers who designed the road suggested a limit of 80,000 pounds.

Davis suggested a compromise by posting a temporary 80,000-pound limit until the roads are frozen this winter. Town roads are then posted at 23,000 pounds from February to May for all loads.

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This would give the road time to season, he said.

After paving is done in the next few weeks, there could be some warm fall days, Davis said. The road will still be soft and a lot of damage could be done.

After Bell asked how the limit would be enforced, Davis said local police could ask state police to bring their portable scales to the Town Farm Road.

Selectman Matthew Smith, a logger himself, voiced concerns about bringing state police in, as all truck traffic could be inconvenienced by the stops, he said. 

It is a balance, Davis said. While the town doesn’t want to hinder anyone from making a living, officials also have to think about taxpayers who have put a lot into the road.

The board voted for the temporary limit and to ask for voluntary compliance from area truckers.

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