NEWRY — The Board of Selectmen agreed Tuesday evening to send a letter to the Mahoosuc Land Trust asking them to look into expanding the parking area for the Step Falls Preserve hiking trail.

Resident Brooks Morton told selectmen at Tuesday’s meeting that he had noticed a lot of people parking on the side of Bear River Road near the Step Falls hiking trail, and that “people were going back and forth across the road, and the road isn’t a passing lane.”

“It’s just too much,” Morton said. “They’re parking on a corner, and the road has no passing zone. They’re opening their doors into the road. Is there any way we can send a letter to the land trust to see if they’ll do something?”

Morton also said that the lack of proper restroom facilities meant people were going to the bathroom in the area surrounding the trail.

Chairman Gary Wight said that the board could send a letter to the Mahoosuc Land Trust, but that there was nothing they could do to compel them to expand the parking area or make changes.

Town Administrator Amy Bernard said that the town had previously sent the land trust a letter with several complaints and that the land trust had followed through on fixing all of the issues at the parking area.

“There are already 23 parking spaces for a half-mile walking trail,” Bernard said. “That’s a lot of spaces.”

She said she could draft a letter to the Mahoosuc Land Trust, signed by the board, that would ask them to look into addressing the parking lot overflow and the lack of restroom facilities.

Selectman Jim Largess agreed that the Mahoosuc Land Trust had always complied with any requests from the town’s residents involving the Step Falls hiking trail, and thought the letter was a good idea.

He said that the board should also address a similar letter to State Rep. Fran Head, R-Bethel, and see if she can do anything about it on the state level.

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