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Tuftonboro-Ossipee town line survey completed

1842 T O 1920 ETCHED IN STONE: This longstanding 27 high granite post, located on the northwest side of Beach Pond Road, marks a spot where the town lines of Tuftonboro, Ossipee and Wolfeboro converge. According to surveyor Paul King, hired to perambulate the Tuftonboro/Ossipee border, the granite post is on the west corner of Tuftonboro, the north corner of Wolfeboro and an angle point on the southwest line of Ossipee. (Photo by Paul King) (click for larger version)
December 16, 2010
TUFTONBORO — The Morgans of Neal Hill in Tuftonboro are assured that their property is entirely in Tuftonboro, according to the perambulation report completed by surveyor Paul King and presented to the Board of Selectmen on Dec. 13.

Marion Morgan, former administrative secretary for the town, was in a quandary when mapping commissioned by the town of Ossipee determined that some of her land was in Ossipee. She wondered if she would have to pay taxes to both towns.

Tuftonboro selectmen signed off on King's report. If Ossipee selectmen, who are splitting the bill, do the same, the matter will be officially resolved.

State law says that a perambulation must be completed every seven years to check markers and bounds along their borders; Tuftonboro last did so in 1955. But, no worries, King reported in some detail on his trek along the border to check 16 corners. He completed the survey mostly in a six week period in the spring between the time of the snow melt and the unfurling of new growth and another five to six week period in the fall after the leaves fell. According to King, he gets better GPS readings when the views are unobstructed.

When Selectman Chair Carolyn Sundquist heard King's description of his activity, including back packing a new granite post into the woods along with digging, drilling and etching tools, she expressed relief that the selectmen hadn't taken on the job themselves. In earlier discussions, Selectman Bill Stockman, who has shared perambulation hiking tales collected from his grandfather Roger Williams and uncle of the same name, both of whom served as selectmen, had mentioned waiting until the marshy areas were frozen to be able to traverse the boundary and keep their feet dry.

King's work also included unpiling stones, drilling and cementing in a new plaque, and repiling stones. He reported that he painted the entire line and has recorded GPS coordinates for all the corners.

Department reports

Selectmen received reports from Codes Officer Jack Parsons, Transfer Station Supervisor Darren Medeiros, Fire And Safety Chief Adam Thompson and Road Agent Jim Bean. Parsons has been completing a punch list that included installing a new window in the police station and filing a report on the Holmes property with the state in response to a request for a tax abatement from John Ratcliffe for his neighbor's collecting activity.

Medeiros announced that the station is engaged in the recycling of mixed glass aggregate, a program offered by the Northeast Resource Recovery Association. The town saves in disposal costs by collecting and crushing the aggregate and gains additional savings by using a portion of it. In Tuftonboro's case, it has been used along road shoulders, thereby reducing road maintennce costs.

Thompson reported the final cost of the new fire engine, $437,000, and suggested that the purchase follow successful passage of the warrant article for construction of the proposed public safety facility. He would like to then find a town that would like to purchase the old engine.

Bean presented a snow plowing policy, which was declared "excellent" by Sundquist and approved unanimously. He said that his crew continues to clean up ditch lines and clear culvert heads to assist drainage, and they've recently painted the white parking lines at the old town hall and have been placing whips to indicate plowing obstacles. Clean up from storm debris has been on the docket as well as sanding.

He commented that he as been enjoying the New Hampshire Road Scholar classes on road maintenance and safety and is now at the Master level.

School taxes

The selectmen met with Jack Widmer, Budget and Finance Committee Chair of the Governor Wentworth Regional School Board on Dec. 9 to discuss Tuftonboro's school taxes for the year ahead.

Sundquist summarized several points, saying that in 2010 the school rate went down. $3,363,625 was returned to taxpayers. Of that, $2, 203, 522 was in unexpended funds and

$1,160,000 represented unanticipated increases in revenue.

The unexpended funds in the budget were due in part to the contribution of federal stimulus funds, conservation of electricity, milder weather along with a leveling of the price, a fuel price drop as the result of competitive bidding, and no interest coming due in the first year of the bond.

One source of unanticipated revenue was a drop in the anticipated amount of Special Education tuition and transportation expenditures.

The stimulus finding will not be available next year, and interest is coming due on the bond. Tuftonboro residents can expect to see a 3.79 percent tax increase.

Other business

The public is invited to attend the grand opening of the Kingswood Arts Center, which will begin this evening, Thursday, Dec. 16, at 6:30 p.m.. The school's a cappella group, Route 28, will sing and the band will perform following a presentation of the school's building plans.

The next selectmen's meeting is scheduled for Dec. 20, at the town offices, at 7 p.m.

Martin Lord Osman
Varney Smith
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