Barriers, boundaries, bids are highlights in Owls Head
Owls Head — The Owls Head Board of Selectmen awarded the salt bid for 2017-2018, discussed a boundary line issue, and heard from a citizen regarding a public easement concern April 18.
The board received four bids to supply the town's 2017-2018 salt, with Morton Salt being awarded the contract at a rate of $58.39 per ton. Bids ranged from that amount to nearly $80 per ton.
Two sand bids were received, but the item was tabled, as Jake Barbour of Jake Barbour Inc. was present and acknowledged he had overlooked the bid deadline. JBI was awarded the contract last year at $11.50 per yard with 750 yards budgeted and only 350 being brought to the sand/salt shed.
Barbour said there was still 400 yards that was budgeted and available to the town and that he would extend the price for this year's contract.
The board voted to table the item until exact numbers of what was available and how much might be needed for next year are arrived at.
A review of the boundary lines of the former Ship to Shore Lobster Co. revealed a wooden platform actually exists on town property, according to Richard Carver, who is a current Town Council member and member of the Harbor Committee.
Board Chairman Tom Von Malder said the town has been working on getting an access lease for up to two years with the new owners, Forum Capital Seafood LLC, who purchased the property in February. He said this would cover the period between the present and when the town eventually plans on building its own pier in the area.
The prior 50-year lease with the former owners expired in December 2016.
Right now a hand-painted sign warns that there is no public access to the wharf at the end of the pier until further notice.
Selectman Dave Matthews said he has drawn up a proposed agreement, but will have town attorney Fred Newcomb review it prior to submitting it to the owners, who have indicated a willingness to work with the town, according to Von Malder.
Lewis Edwards, property owner on Cooper's Beach Road, asked the board to get involved with a public easement concern.
Edwards has threatened to take JBI to court for property damages if it does not pay a requested $800, according to Barbour. JBI does the town's plowing in the winter.
In question are three wooden barriers Edwards has in place at the very edge of his cottage, one of which was damaged, Edwards said, by a Barbour plow. "They are there to keep the plow driver from cutting the corner and wiping out those flower beds," he said.
Edwards said he does not want to see the issue go to court, but if that is what is necessary to get what he feels should be enforced, enforced, that is what he will do.
Matthews acknowledged that the board was aware of the issues. He said the public easement roads have a representative who is in charge of letting residents know the particulars of where things can be placed with regard to the ordinances.
"I think the ordinances are pretty clear," Matthews said.
"That's to be eligible for plowing," Edwards said. "In other words, if you don't meet those, you are ineligible for plowing."
He further stated plowing of public easement roads is voluntary. The town does not have the obligation to plow and the residents do not have to allow plowing to occur.
"As a property owner, we are entitled to protect our property," he added.
Matthews proposed to look into the matter and come up with a solution by meeting with those involved.
Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or via email at email@example.com.