Town takes action to end abuse of public sand
Hope — Selectmen heard from Farley & Sons, the town's current provider of winter road maintenance, at their meeting Tuesday, Jan. 14.
The town is already preparing its Request for Proposals (RFP) for next year's winter maintenance bid, said Town Administrator Jon Duke, because selectmen and the Budget Committee agreed they wanted to know earlier in the year what that cost would be. He said the town contracts for plowing and sanding of roads for three years at a time, with an option to extend the contract for up to an additional two years. Farley has had the contract for the last five years, and Duke said the town has been satisfied with its work.
“I would say we've had a pretty successful year … and a pretty successful run,” he said of the contract term now coming to an end.
Duke anticipates that the new RFP will be out in February.
The Board also took action on another matter related to winter maintenance. In response to a problem with residents – and even non-residents – taking more sand for their private use than they are entitled to, Duke said sand for public use would be located outside to the right of the town sand shed, which will now be off-limits to anyone not authorized to be there. Duke said the sand shed will now be locked, unless road crews are out maintaining the roads.
A sign will be erected stating that sand is for residents, with a limit of two buckets of sand per storm, and users will be on their honor to adhere to the rules.
If there continues to be a problem, Duke said, the town would consider getting the Knox County Sheriff's Office involved.
Sarah E. Reynolds is copy editor for the Courier Gazette and Camden Herald.
Sarah E. Reynolds has been a reporter and writer for more than 20 years, winning awards from the Maine Press Association and other professional organizations. She loves to read, ride her ATV and play word games.