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Construction permits, values down from last year


April 17, 2019
Construction permits are down from this time last year, and project values have lowered, according to a report from the planning department.

Planning and Land Use Office director John Ayer gave the board of selectmen an update on the department during the selectmen's meeting on April 3.

Around this time in 2018, general construction permits were up from 2017. In his recent report Ayer said that permits as of the same time in 2019 were down from 2018.

The same number of permits were pulled for single family homes, though the values of those homes lowered. The value of all construction, including commercial construction, is down 40 percent overall.

"Last year was, I think, the strongest year we had for permits in the previous 11 years," Ayer said. "It's coming down from a high, I will say."

The total number of permits overall from planning, zoning, and others is down 10 percent.

Ayer said the only thing that hasn't gone down this year is site plans, saying the town received 50 percent more in fees from those.

Ayer provided the selectmen with a list of the different applications that had been processed through the Planning Board. The only one that was denied was from Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion requesting to hold concerts until 11:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.

Overall the Planning Board has looked at six site plan amendments and four site plans for new work. Eddy asked if that is a typical ratio and Ayer said that depends on the year. He said usually, they see more site plan amendments than new site plans.

The Planning Board is looking for a recording secretary. Ayer said an ad was placed for that position and no one applied as of that meeting. This isn't an issue unique to Gilford, Meredith is also looking for a recording secretary and had not received any applications as of that meeting. Ayer said Gilford is also offering more money for that position than other towns usually offer.

Selectman Gus Benavides said Police Chief Anthony Bean Burpee mentioned during a prior meeting that the Police Department had a number of volunteers working for them and asked if something similar could be considered for the recording clerk position.

Garnet Hill
Martin Lord Osman
Penny Pitou
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