Walton Mill Pond Dam in Farmington (File Photo)

FARMINGTON —  Representatives from half a dozen social service agencies asked selectmen Tuesday evening to restore funding for them in the county budget.

Vice Chairman Stephan Bunker, who led the meeting, asked Selectmen Scott Landry, Michael Fogg and Matthew Smith to hear their appeal, which was not on the meeting agenda.

Chairman Joshua Bell was absent.

After the county cut $143,000 for outside agencies last year, the issue is coming back to individual communities, Bunker said.


Selectmen were concerned about how to determine who would be funded and for how much.

 It could open the floodgates for requests, Landry said.

The town has previously referred agencies to the county for support.

“Who gets what could open a real can of worms,” Fogg added.

Farmington saved $18,000 as their share of the $143,000 cut last year.

Representatives from agencies such as Western Maine Community Action, Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Services, Western Maine Transportation Greater Franklin Development Council and others sought a warrant article asking voters to approve a message to commissioners to restore funding.


It was suggested the $18,000 the town saved be divided among the agencies cut.

Town Manager Richard Davis said it’s too late to put it in this year’s budget.

In other business, John Burrows from the Atlantic Salmon Federation and Joe McLean from Wright-Pierce engineers in Topsham presented cost estimates on fish passage options at the Walton’s Mill Dam.

For fishway construction and dam repairs, the estimate is from $550,000 to $720,000 without annual operating and maintenance costs or engineering, design and permitting costs, Burrows said. 

For dam removal, park design and construction, a $20,000 park maintenance endowment and culvert replacements on Cummings Hill Road and Clover Mill Road are estimated at $1.2 million without engineering, design and permitting.

The Atlantic Salmon Federation has offered to raise the $1.2 million from private and federal sources to remove the dam and reconstruct the park, a task that could take a couple of years.  The town would only be asked to partner in writing grants. 

Another public meeting is planned for 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 21, at the Community Center.


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