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Gift of new bench to Libby Museum leads off a busy agenda for Wolfeboro selectmen

January 23, 2019
WOLFEBORO —The Wolfeboro Board of Selectmen covered a lot of ground at their Jan. 16 meeting, from approving the Moose Mountain Regional Greenways snowshoe race at the Abenaki Ski Area on Saturday, Jan. 26, accepting the gift of a memorial bench to the Libby Museum, doubling the Josiah Brown scholarship contributions, appointing a member to the Cyanobacteria Ad Hoc Committee to engineering presentations from the Department of Public Works. There was also an announcement of this year's Independence Day Parade theme from Harold Chamberlin.

Libby Museum Ex. Dir. Alana Albee spoke on behalf of Amy Martell, who offered the gift of a 60-inch granite bench with engraving in memory of her mother, Marion Chisholm, to be placed to the left of the lawn overlooking the lake. It is to be delivered in the spring.

Acting Town Manager James Pineo reported that there were only two applicants this year to the town's Josiah W. Brown Scholarship fund, pointing to the need, he said, to reach out to the Kingswood Regional High School Guidance Department and review the criteria. He recommended the two continuing scholars each receive a $1,500 stipend in view of the healthy balance in the Scholarship Trust.

Selectman Dave Bowers moved to increase the amount to $3,000 each, commenting that there were sufficient funds in the account and college costs are high. The motion passed.

Mike Turner was appointed to the Cyanobacteria Ad Hoc Committee. A retired physician, Turner said it was a natural fit for him to participate in water monitoring, as he lives in the Winter Harbor area, and he was pleased to serve.

Harold Chamberlin stepped to the microphone on behalf of the American Legion Harriman Hill Post 18 and his role as organizer of the Independence Day Parade (25 years so far). This will be the 100th anniversary of both the event and Post 18, so he would like to "see something spectacular this year." Reviewing last year's parade, he commented that he will make some modifications to reduce its length, exacerbated by a number of very long trucks and multiple vehicles. The theme, not yet carved in stone, is "something like, 100 years, The American Legion, Post 18, Still Serving the Community, State and Nation",he told the board.

Frank Cartier followed with a pitch for support for future fundraising activities on behalf of the Legion to renovate the building. He said the group would like to be able to host community events.

Public Works Director Dave Ford introduced representatives of Underwood Engineers (UE) for a review of 2018 water and sewer rates. Water revenues of $1,283,349 were 2.6 percent less than the revenue assumed in the rate model, but since debt will continue to fall off, UE recommends staying with the recommended 2 percent water rate increase in 2019 as projected in the July 2017 model.

The estimated total of 2018 water consumption is 109,038,791 gallons.

According to the UE report, 2018 sewer revenue and consumption are tracking closely to the rate model. Since 2018 revenues are estiated to be within 3 percent of the revenues assumed in the model, UE recommends staying with the recommended 2.5 percent sewer rate increase in 2019 as projected in the July, 2017 model.

Estimated 2018 infiltration and inflow decreased from 2017 but was approximately 8 percent higher than 2015 and 2016. It was 4.2 percent less than 2017.

The board asked Ford to distill the information presented into a one to two page summary for further review before it makes a decision on the rate increases.

Ford, offering an update on the Rapid Infiltration Basin (RIB) site remediation progress, said the second full scale pilot program is underway, which involves collecting data to share with the state. The town purchased a five acre parcel in Tuftonboro affected by the previous water breakouts in order to restore the wetlands. Pipes will be installed underground. The RIB has been shut off this season. When it is operational again, the flow will be limited to no more than 340,000 gallons a day.

Residents are reminded that the Deliberative Session, which offers the opportunity to examine the Town Warrant in detail and put forward amendments to a vote, is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 5, 7 p.m., in the Great Hall. Feb. 7 is the snow date.

A preview of the warrant can be viewed on Wolfeboro Television's Channel 25.

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Varney Smith
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