Brian Mills, chairman of the Andover Board of Selectmen, addresses residents Tuesday night about the “mess” at the transfer station. Most of the 20 or so people attending supported charging a fee for bulky items, appliances and tires. Seated at the head table are Selectmen Joe Luce and Jeff Elkie, Marianne Hutchinson/Rumford Falls Times

ANDOVER — The idea of charging residents for leaving bulky items and tires at the transfer station received support from most of the 20 or so residents at Tuesday night’s informational meeting at the Town Hall.

“We just got rid of some tires and it cost (about) $1,300 to $1,400 and we’ve taken in a couple hundred bucks maybe (from residents),” Board of Selectman Chairman Brian Mills said. The town approved about $72,000 this year for the transfer station budget and it receives about $10,000 from the county for some adjacent unorganized territories to use the stationm, which is on Back Street.

“This isn’t a financial crisis, but our dump is a friggin’ mess,” he said. “It’s just not as efficient as it should be.”

He said the station layout needed to be reorganized and maybe change some some things “we do and take.”

Selectman Joe Luce said, “So we’re trying to figure out ways to relieve (costs) so we don’t have to raise the budget or anything in nine months or so.” He said officials are trying to clean up the dump and organize items such as hard plastics and wood in separate areas for better efficiency.

Residents can leave up to eight tires, one freezer, one refrigerator or air conditioner per household per year at no cost. Additional tires cost $3 each and additional bulky items cost $15.


Many resident said $3 for a tire would be fair.

“I say we charge, no more freebies, right straight across the board, Kim Gautreau said. “How often does somebody go through a refrigerator, how often do they go through a stove?”

Kevin Scott said charging for some items “will modify behavior” and “be a deterrent.”

The other transfer station issue mentioned was the burn pit, which ceased operation in July after a  nearby resident complained of the smell of paint.

Mills said the burn pile would not start up again Tuesday during the transfer station’s normal hours of operation because officials are still monitoring the situation. The town needs an attendant to watch over the contents of the burn pile, as well as other disposal piles, he said.

Tuesday’s discussion will continue throughout the year, with final decisions on the costs and updating the transfer station ordinance coming to a vote at the town meeting in June 2023.

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