PERU — Peru selectmen were given a citizens’ petition Monday night seeking reconsideration of a vote to decide the fate of the old Peru Elementary School.

The petition requests that residents vote again to decide if the building will be kept or sold.

In November, Peru residents voted to take $170,000 out of the town’s surplus fund and use it for updates to bring the building up to code so it could be used for business, other commercial purposes and gatherings.

Also on the ballet, the option to sell the school at fair market value failed by three votes.

The petition, signed by 105 Peru residents, was given to the board by Richard Powell, a former Peru selectman and a member of the finance committee.

“I’ve said from the beginning that if a citizens’ petition came in with the required amount of signatures, I would not turn the citizens’ petition away because the people are speaking,” said Raquel Welch, board chairwoman.


Selectmen will contact the Maine Municipal Association to find out the appropriate action to take with the petition.

In other matters, Welch will step down as board chairwoman in 2019.

“I’m not able to dedicate the time to this seat,” Welch said.

Board members nominated Selectman Kevin Taylor, who accepted the position.

The town’s contracted tax assessor, Shirley Bartlett, presented revaluation calculations showing a potential for a reduction in the property tax rate. Bartlett’s rate, however, does not reflect known budget increases at the schools and with MedCare Ambulance and others, according to Selectwoman Carol Roach.

State Rep. Richard Pickett attended the meeting to urge the board request a speed study from the intersection of Main Street and Auburn Road southeast past Dirigo Elementary School, where the speed limit increases to 55 mph.

“When I was campaigning down on (Route) 108, I was approached by several different households to take a look at the speed in the area,” Pickett said.

The board Monday night also accepted a $5,600 bid from David Richardson Excavation and Sales for a town-owned 1990 Ford F-550 truck.


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