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Ossipee board commends local heroes for crash victim rescue

OSSIPEE SELECT BOARD members recognized the heroism of four men who assisted accident victim Jennifer Schiavone of Conway after her car plunged into the Lovell River in West Ossipee on April 18. Pictured above (l-r) are board member Morton Leavitt, Good Samaritans Cody Nason and James Kettinger, with select board members Harry Merrow and Kathleen Maloney. Not pictured are Daniel Kurzawa and Mark Eldridge. - Courtesy photo (click for larger version)
April 29, 2010
OSSIPEE — Good job, heroes!

That was the message Monday afternoon, when the board of selectmen took a moment to thank four local men who quite likely saved the life of a Conway woman in an April 18 car crash.

The board presented letters of commendation and Good Samaritan Awards in person during the April 26 select board meeting at town hall, where Center Ossipee resident Cody Nason and James Kettinger of Danvers, Mass., and Center Ossipee accepted their award from the board. Center Ossipee residents and fellow Good Samaritans Daniel Kurzawa and Mark Eldridge were unable to attend the meeting, but were equally recognized and thanked.

The crash occurred on Sunday morning, April 18 in West Ossipee, after the pickup truck driven by Jennifer Schiavone plunged into the Lovell River. The men jumped into the frigid water and freed the driver from her vehicle and kept her head above water while waiting for rescuers to arrive. The heroes were all traveling in separate vehicles and happened upon the crash scene at the right time.

"They probably saved her live and not only is she grateful, but the town is very grateful," said Merrow during the presentation.

Schiavone was airlifted to Maine Medical Center; she has since been released from the hospital. Her dog, Teddy, who went missing after the crash, has since been found and returned to his family. (See page 3 for more details of the rescue.)

Select board members wasted no time to commend the rescuers and at the April 19 meeting issued an invitation to the men to come to town hall.

"We would like to extend our great appreciation for the bravery and selflessness you have shown. Your quick response and positive actions probably saved the accident victim's life!" stated the board members.

In other business during the April 26 meeting, the board also discussed illegal dumping, abatement requests, a reduction in state education aid to the town, and opened bids for a variety of renovation projects in town.

Trash problem

Maloney reported that someone has been illegally dumping bags of garbage, including used diapers, plastic, aluminum and household trash, at Archer's Pond Road. Ironically, the dumpsite is located close to the town's recycling center. The road is town owned, with the land owned by Peter Cook who allows public use. Maloney said there were at least two pickup trucks full of garbage. She showed photos of the garbage. On Tuesday, Maloney visited the spot with Zoning Enforcement Officer Dave Senecal and went through the trash in an attempt to identify the culprit. Board members acknowledged it would be difficult to identify the offender, and Maloney jokingly said they could get a DNA sample off the dirty diaper.

State Education Aid cut

The board reviewed a memo from The Coalition Communities alerting them to the possibility that state education aid to the town of Ossipee may decrease by $19,498 as of July 1, 2010, but the Legislature could do something to stop it within the next two weeks.

Coalition Communities Coordinator Pat Remick stated that the NH House is considering Senate Bill 465 to extend the transition phase of the education funding formula by an additional year. The bill would establish a study committee to determine if the full formula is financially sustainable over the long term. "Please contact your legislators ASAP and ask them to support SB465 so your community won't lose money next year," she urged in the letter.

"Although your community is scheduled to lose money, the full formula will cost the State at least $70 million more as of July 1, 2011 and possibly an extra $150 million to cover the federal stimulus funding that might not get renewed. Where will the state get the money?," stated Remick.

Merrow and board members agreed the formula could use additional review and he said he would study the bill before next meeting. The link to the proposed bill is: www.gencourt.state.nh.us/legislation/2010/SB0465.htm.

Abatement request

So far, the town has received two tax abatement requests from shoreline property owners seeking to get a break on their taxes because their property may fall within the 410 foot mean water level mark set by the state. The town rejected the requests. Efforts are under way to convince the state to reduce the high water mark to 407 feet.


The following sealed bids were opened:

Speed Bumps: A bid was received for the purchase of the used speed bumps in the amount of $75. Merrow moved to approve, Maloney seconded, all were in favor.


Addison Mason Builders: $1,850

DCS Construction: $2,350

D & L Construction: $2,000

Selectmen's Office Renovations:

D & L Construction: $12,710.86 (hardwood flooring)

D & L Construction: $11,992.20 (high traffic carpet)

DCS Construction: $ 6,600 (vinyl flooring)

Olde Wolfeboro Reno: $ 6,235 (tile)

Olde Wolfeboro Reno: $ 5,709.50 (hardwood)

Olde Wolfeboro Reno: $ 4,585 (high traffic carpet)

Lost Valley Home Care: $12,870 (tile floor/granite countertop)

Siding (all materials supplied by Town-bids are labor only):

James Boewe: $2,840

Red Oak Carpentry: $ 550

JB Home Improvement: $4,200

DCS Construction $ 675

Addison Mason Builders: $1,450

Olde Wolfeoboro Reno: $1,285

All bids were taken under advisement, and will be reviewed through the week with the Public Works Director. Any decisions will be announced next week. Merrow moved to take these under advisement, Maloney seconded, all were in favor.

Martin Lord Osman
Varney Smith
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