FARMINGTON — The Board of Selectmen on Tuesday accepted two grants and a front-end loader for the Farmington Police Department.

The department has acquired the front-end loader from the Law Enforcement Support Office for use in clearing its shooting range, Police Chief Jack Peck said.

LESO allows participating law enforcement agencies to seek surplus Department of Defense property.

The front-end loader in Augusta is a 1985 vehicle which was reconditioned in 2010 and the hydraulics are like new. Since then, it has only had 57 hours of use, Peck said. The vehicle has forks but a bucket or a snowblower could be attached.

The vehicle is free; the only cost involved is moving it to Farmington.

After a year of use by the department, the front-end loader becomes the property of the municipality to sell or use, Town Manager Richard Davis said.

The Police Department has acquired several items, including two large trucks, a pickup truck, a utility task vehicle, office equipment and furniture, brand-new laptop computers and other equipment, Peck said. He said he would present a list to the board.

The department has been awarded a $7,058 grant for seat-belt enforcement, Peck said.

The grant from the Maine Bureau of Highway Safety is part of the national Click It or Ticket campaign.

The grant will provide funds for 29 four-hour seat belt enforcement details from May 22 to June 5, Peck said.

The department has also received a $1,500 grant from the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife for random patrols on the Whistle Stop Trail this summer.

With use of a utility task vehicle from the LESO program, Peck plans for officers to patrol along the trail for a two- or three-hour period at random times, he said.

About $500 of the funds will be used to buy helmets and the rest for officer patrol. 

The trail that stretches from West Farmington to Jay along the old railroad bed provides an opportunity to work with Wilton and Jay police departments for coverage of the whole trail, Peck said.

The department has an ATV but it can only carry one rider. The ATV cannot accommodate an officer who is patrolling alone without backup and arrests someone on the trail, he said. The UTV has two side-by-side seats, he said, allowing two people to ride in the same vehicle.  

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The Farmington Police Department has acquired a front-end loader, left, from surplus Department of Defense property. The large truck in the background is one of two also acquired from the Law Enforcement Support Office program.

The Farmington Police Department has acquired a front-end loader from the Department of Defense’s surplus property program. The loader was reconditioned in 2010 and has been used for only 57 hours since.


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