OXFORD — The Board of Selectmen voted unanimously Thursday night not to charge two Oxford Hills Athletic Boosters teams for using the town field on Pottle Road.

Recreation Director Patti Hess recommended charging a fee for the Boosters’ lacrosse team players to use the field. The fee would have also been assessed to soccer team players as well.

While the idea of setting a fee goes back at least two years, Hess told the board that when she became director in December 2018 it became evident a lot of money was being paid to maintain the fields.

The town pays $4,000 to maintain the field next to the American Legion hall on Skeetfield Road and $8,000 to maintain of the Pottle Road field.

The soccer and lacrosse teams use both fields.

Mike Marshall of the Oxford Hills Athletic Boosters said fee would “cripple” the programs it runs for soccer, basketball, cheering, football, wrestling and lacrosse for Oxford Hills students,

He said the programs bring in out-of-town teams that frequent businesses.

“The question is, does Oxford not want this business,” he said.

The Boosters, Marshall said, pay for items, including portable toilets, benches, equipment and scholarships that enable some 400 youngsters to play soccer and 122 to play lacrosse.

They are not supported by the school district or town budgets, he said.

Selectman Caldwell Jackson said the town has always paid for the maintenance and if taxpayers want to discontinue that, they can vote down the budget request at the annual town meeting in June.

In other matters, selectmen agreed to spend $184,68 for a new highway plow and plow truck equipment. Asselin said $100,000 would come from the Capital Account and the rest from taxes, if voters agree to raise an appropriate it at the annual town meeting.

The board also:

  • Appointed Tanya Owens to the Budget Committee;
  • Approved a Mass Gathering permit for the Oxford 250 and the Oxford Plains Speedway racing season; and
  • Accepted $6,200 donated by area residents, officials and local businesses toward funeral costs for Fire Chief Gary Sacco who died March 10.

Asselin thanked those involved in the funeral for the numerous food donations and said leftovers were given to local churches and organizations.

A notice will be posted next week advertising for a fire chief.

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