County Commissioners approve additional clock tower renovations

first_imgFARMINGTON – County Commissioners met Tuesday morning to discuss a potential environmental improvement project, various courthouse renovations and the guidelines of county funding for Western Maine Community Action.Raymond Plog, a landowner along the banks of the Sandy River, expressed concern to commissioners regarding the erosion of his property line due to the unstable banks of the river. Plog said that over the fifty years he has lived on the property the erosion has increased dramatically to the point where he is concerned about his home being in danger. Due to the property’s adjacency to the Sandy River, and the river’s designation as critical habitat for the endangered Atlantic Salmon, it is unlawful for Plog to take action without state approval.Commissioner Charlie Webster agreed to visit the site to help determine the next steps of action. The county does have TIF funding specifically for environmental improvement projects Webster said, and this project could potentially fall under that category. Webster along with representatives from the United States Fish and Wildlife will meet on Sept. 5 to assess the situation.Approval was given to move forward with the renovation of the clock tower atop the courthouse after the construction crew discovered additional work that needed to be done. The project has been ongoing throughout the summer, however the state of the deteriorating clock was discovered to be in worse shape than originally thought. A requested amount of $6,680 was approved to ensure the completion of the project within 3 to 4 weeks.Lastly, Commissioner Webster requested that an email be sent to Western Maine Community Action regarding the $25,000 of funding coming from the county budget. The first quarter of that amount was granted to the non-profit agency several weeks ago, after an agreed upon condition that the organization will report back on how the money is used and how much leverage it provides them.“WMCA is required to raise a certain amount of local money. The other programs didn’t say that, they just wanted us to give the money to them,” Webster said.The email will specifically ask WMCA to inform the commissioners and the budget committee on how the funding has been used and how much leverage it provided, as well as make a request that a representative from the organization will attend a future meeting to discuss these concerns for the next three installments of the funding.“We want to be sure we aren’t paying for overhead or other costs,” he said.last_img read more

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