SANGERVILLE, Maine — The mindset of Sangerville residents wasn’t on spending Saturday as they defeated a handful of articles at a special town meeting.
Voters rejected 44-28 a proposal from Angela Wells to purchase property she owns that is landlocked by town property. Wells had offered to sell 2.9 acres of land and a building to the town for $37,000, interest-free. As part of the agreement, the town also would have abated the taxes for 2009 and 2010 for a total of $1,096 plus interest and costs.
It was hoped by some residents that the land could be acquired to enlarge the recreation field. It was noted, however, that since children from other communities use the field, it might be better if the recreation department raised the funds for the purchase with help from those sending towns.
Resident Pam Smith pointed out that if the town purchased the property under that agreement, it would pay $13,912 an acre, which she called “outrageous.” Smith and others opposed the move because the town will have to deal with the disposal costs of the former school, an amount which remains unknown.
An $11,000 request for guardrails for French’s Mills Road was reduced by residents to $2,378. That move came after resident Roy Lemieux advised that the state would provide the town 125 feet of guardrail for each side of the road if it hired a state contractor to install it at a cost of $2,378. The town will need to remove the old guardrail and provide the flaggers for the operation.
Residents also had been asked to appropriate $50,000 for road improvements but residents voted 45-22 to reduce it to zero.
A request for $8,000 to hire a temporary employee on an as-needed basis also was defeated 38-32. Former Selectman Lance Burgess said the town had been “illegally” using a town resident in the public works department for some time, but he declined to further elaborate. He said the board was trying to correct the issue with the extra funds. “There are some legal issues,” he warned.
Residents approved using $750 from the woodlot management reserve to establish a trail behind the town garage, and $675 from surplus for the town hall sprinkler system repair.
Irving McNaughton was elected selectman. The vote was 55 to Bill Rowe’s 43 votes.