Dresden forms cable access committee

Posted:  Tuesday, August 22, 2017 - 1:30pm

Dresden selectmen voted on Monday, Aug. 22 to form a committee to negotiate a new contract with cable television provider Spectrum.

Spectrum, owned by Charter Communications, bought the cable service from Time Warner in 2016. Selectmen said they have been trying to get cable extensions to several parts of town for some time.

“We want to get something achieved,” said Selectman Allan Moeller Sr.

Moeller said many of the back roads have not been able to get cable extensions, although there are enough prospective subscribers there to meet the company’s density requirement. Moeller used the example of sections of Route 128, Calls Hill and Blinn Hill roads. Selectman Dale Hinote said the board was acting on the request of resident Brandon Perrault. The board had tried previously to get Time Warner to build out the cable network for remote residents.

Hinote said he hoped to find five volunteers to fill out the committee including someone with technical savvy. He said he would serve as the designated selectman on the committee.

Hinote said the board had rejected a $350 bill from Spectrum for the use of  Spectrum’s signal tower on Mcfadden Road for a fire department antenna. Selectman Dwight Keene said the antenna placement was part of the existing contract with the cable company which provided free use of the tower.

“We pay nothing for the next 18 years,” said Keene.

In other business, the board said it had officially accepted the bid of McGee Construction of West Gardiner to replace culverts on Bog Road.  Hinote said the firm was the low bidder of four companies. McGee agreed to do the work for $89,940.

“That is well within our budget,” said Hinote. The town is due to receive an $84,000 grant from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection for the project.

Moeller said McGee had already ordered the culvert pipe. He said the town was still waiting for final approval from the Army Corps of Engineers before it can begin work. There is a Nov. 15 deadline for completion.

‘We are waiting for the Corps,” said Moeller.

Moeller said arrangements will be made to close the road for a few days during the culvert replacement.