Brewer council supports senior housing project

Posted Nov. 16, 2010, at 8:52 p.m.

BREWER, Maine — After questioning the legality of a land sale between Brewer Housing Authority and its former chairman, City Council members on Monday unanimously endorsed a resolve in support of a senior housing project on the Chamberlain Street parcel.

The city paid for an investigative report that looked into the BHA land purchase, which states that former Housing Authority Chairman Calvin Bubar violated state laws when he sold his property at 258 Chamberlain St. to the Housing Authority in October 2009. The report was sent to the Maine Attorney General’s Office in May.

“The Attorney General’s Office has had that for six months and still are holding onto it,” City Manager Steve Bost said at Monday’s meeting, when asked by Councilor Larry Doughty about the status of the report.

Councilors have said they are not against the proposed $5.14 million 32-unit senior housing project, which the Housing Authority is partnering with Penquis to build.

The resolve endorsed Monday states the city “enthusiastically supports initiatives to help our citizens have adequate housing … [and the council] strongly support the Chamberlain Place Senior Housing Project and is ready to assist the Housing Authority of Brewer in making this project a reality.”

During the meeting, the council also:

• Accepted a $1,407 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice for ballistic vests for the Police Department.

• Hired Sebago Technics Inc. of Westbrook for $250,000 to design, permit and provide construction administration services for the Brewer Business and Commerce Park, which will be located off Wiswell Road.

• Hired WBRC Architects and Engineers of Bangor to design an upgrade for Brewer City Hall to make it accessible to the handicapped. A U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development grant worth $321,750 is being used to pay for the project.

• Appointed Alan Wilcox to the Brewer Housing Authority board.

• Held the first reading of a proposed Property Assessed Clean Energy ordinance, which would allow qualifying property owners access to funds awarded for energy-saving improvements.

• Decided to ask the planning board to take a second look at phase two of the Felt Brook subdivision. The developer is asking that sidewalks be removed from the project, which would need to be approved by the planning board or through the zoning board of appeals.

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