Fast News

Gravel study

MILFORD – Selectman Mark Fougere went to a meeting of the Advisory Budget Committee last week to explain why the town is paying Fieldstone Land Consultants $20,000 for a study of gravel resources at the Brox property this fall.

A warrant article that would have given selectmen the authority to remove and sell gravel was defeated at the polls in March, but selectmen are likely to offer voters a similar article next year, Fougere said. The study will make sure the site isn’t over-excavated, he said, and will answer questions about the quantity of material and phasing of the excavation.

The town Department of Public Works uses the gravel for roads and other uses, Fougere said, so the information will be useful even if voters again say the town can’t sell the material.

The part of the Brox property where excavation would take place is slated to become sports fields, and other community facilities – the fields likely soon and a school likely decades away.

Fougere said once facilities are in place, the natural resources become inaccessible.

– KATHY CLEVELAND

Snow parking ban

MILFORD – The town’s snow parking ban goes into effect Sunday, Nov. 15, and when the ban is in effect, it is illegal for any vehicles to be parked on, or adjacent to, any public roadway or street between 1 and 6 a.m.

If the town decides clean-up efforts will be required, a public notice will be given by no later than 4 p.m. for that coming night ,and the ban could remain active for additional consecutive nights to allow for continuing clean-up.

Residents will be notified by the town website, www.milford.nh.gov, community access television on Channels 20 and 21, the automatic Nixle emergency communication service to mobile devices, and by the amber light on the front of Town Hall.

The ordinance also forbids parking on any town-owned public parking Lot between 2 and 7 a.m. between Nov. 15 and the following April 15. The lots are located on Putnam Street, Middle Street and the Wadleigh Memorial Library parking lot. Parking is allowed in the lot adjacent to the police station, which has its own driveway on Garden Street.

Default budget

MILFORD – A default budget is the money a municipality has to spend, whether or not voters reject the budget, and next year, Milford’s default budget has been projected to be high – at $3.7 million, which is more than the 2014 approved budget.

At the Oct. 29 meeting of the Milford Advisory Budget Committee, Town Finance Director Jack Sheehey explained that the projected increase for the 2015 town budget is already more than 8 percent, and 5.3 percent of that is because of the default budget.

Among the reasons for the increase are debt payments on the new town equipment – a fire truck, a dump truck and a sidewalk plow, plus a large increase in the emergency communications center budget, for a new console, and contractual pay obligations.

The good news is health insurance has only gone up by a tenth of a percent, instead of the projected 5 percent.

– KATHY CLEVELAND

Parking woes

MILFORD – Abutters to Middle Street told selectmen last week they oppose a plan to create parallel parking spaces on the south side of the street, near School Street.

Brendan Philbrick, who owns the building at 40 Nashua St., said vehicles parking there could be a “catastrophic” problem to the functioning of his building, interfering with heating oil deliveries and the emptying of the Dumpster. Ron Racicot, owner of Son’s Chimney Service, said large vehicles coming and going from his business use Middle Street and any vehicle parked there for a long time would get in their way. Melissa Grant, from the Hardman Company office that looks out on Middle Street, said there’s not enough room and there could be a serious problem when fire trucks come down the street.

Selectmen postponed a discussion on the issue until all board members are present, and Kathy Bauer noted that parking has been a problem downtown for a very long time.

– KATHY CLEVELAND