TURNER — Androscoggin County Commissioner Sally Christner and state Sen. Jeff Timberlake, both of Turner, told the Select Board on Monday night of plans by the county and state police to increase patrols along state Route 4.

Christner said there are plans in this year’s proposed county budget to hire a new patrol deputy to provide several more hours of patrolling on the busy highway. Equipment for the new position will come from American Rescue Plan Act funds, while the deputy’s salary will be paid through taxation to the towns. Turner’s estimated share will be about $3,722.

Selectman Steve Maheu was concerned about the yearly pay increase that comes with a new patrol deputy.

Christner said it’s a yearly cost-of-living increase.

Some towns wanted to place the financial burden of the new patrol deputy on Turner but Christner assured selectmen that all county towns must fund that cost together, and she does not believe the entire cost can be placed on just one municipality.

Timberlake, who represents District 17, said he has had discussions with state police officials who agreed to increase patrols and said he has noticed more troopers patrolling Route 4 recently.

He submitted a bill to the Legislature recently to require state police to reinstate rural patrols, but he made no promises that it would be successful. Legislators did not cut state police funding in the last budget and approved the agency hiring six new positions in the crime lab, so he does not see why the agency needs to cut back on patrols.

The Nov. 6 board meeting will be held at the fire station at 19 General Turner Hill Road because equipment will be set up at the Town Office for voting Nov. 7.

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