OXFORD — Applicants for the position of fire chief have been narrowed to three, Town Manager Butch Asselin told the Board of Selectmen at its May 16 meeting.

The appointee will replace Fire Chief Gary Sacco, 63, who died March 10 in Portland where he was attending the funeral of Berwick Fire Capt. Joel Barnes, who died fighting a house fire a week earlier.

Sacco, a veteran fire educator and former fire chief in New Gloucester, had served almost two years as Oxford fire chief.

In April, Asselin appointed a group of six people to interview candidates for fire chief, including selectmen, business owners, a department head and a Planning Board member. That panel interviewed seven candidates and recommended four candidates. One removed his or her name from consideration.

The three candidates are expected to be interviewed by Asselin and if he finds an appropriate finalist, he will make him or her a conditional offer of employment, do complete a background investigation, drug screening and then bring the name to the selectmen.

In other news, the board was told that the cleanup of the mold and mildew, with the help of a large dehumidifier, is continuing in the basement of the Town Office. The affected areas are mainly the gymnasium, elevator shaft and other downstairs areas.

The ongoing problem has prompted town officials and a recently-formed committee to again look at eying possible sites and costs of a new town office, should it be needed in the future.

“The town has done what it can to alleviate the problem. We’ll see how it works out,” he said.

The board recognized Freeland Holmes Librarian Glenda Drapeau in a ceremony at the meeting. Drapeau has served in the position for 40 years.

Acting on a recommendation from the town attorney, the board voted to approve the Capital Acquisition Project that will lease two 2016 ambulances and the financing of that lease. Although town meeting voters had approved the funding previously, the town attorney requested the specific language be approved.

The town manager has been given approval to move ahead on a gift of land on Industrial Park Road from John H. Schiavi; the transfer of funds in the amount of $15,404 and $9,506 to build ADA compliant restrooms and install a water line at Pottle Field;  awarded the bid of $96,573 to All State for the paving of the Gore Road and parts of Hebron Road; and reappointed seven people to various town committees and advisory boards.

 


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