Commissioners approve second new recycling truck
Lincoln County commissioners agreed March 6 to buy a new recycling truck to replace the second Peterbilt truck in the fleet. Because the Peterbilt trucks were long-haul, they required expensive maintenance every few months, according to County Administrator Carrie Kipfer. “If we waited much longer to trade it in, we would have lost money,” she said.
The recycling center is purchasing a new Kenworth for $85,039, a year younger than the other new truck. Kipfer also said she sent a letter to towns, informing them that plastics will have to be sorted by type, with plastics #1 in a separate bin from plastics #2 and 3-7. That change starts April 1. Changes in the worldwide market for recycling, with China, especially, bowing out of the market, caused the change in policy.
Kipfer received permission to negotiate with two copier companies toward purchasing rather than leasing new copiers. The county will save about $3,000-$4,000 on each copier if they are purchased outright, she said.
Changes to the lease agreement for the Huntoon Hill tower, as well as structural improvements to the tower, were also discussed. U.S. Cellular is a tenant on the pole, which also serves as radio communications for law enforcement. However, the tower has guide wires not strong enough to control all the weight of the equipment, and corrections are needed, Kipfer said. The issue came up as U.S. Cellular came to perform a site inspection with an eye toward renewing a lease agreement for up to 10 years.
Sheriff Todd Brackett said the Addiction Resource Center contract numbers previously given to the commissioners were not correct; the cost, including the additional hours granted in this year’s budget request, is $178,000, which is $13,555 more than budgeted. Commissioners agreed to the additional funding, and said the work ARC does with opiate-addicted people is a valuable resource. ARC will moving to Boothbay Harbor soon, seeing an additional 65 clients in the Boothbay area.
Brackett asked to give the bid for vehicle maintenance to Hillside, the current company. Although another company had a slightly lower bid, Brackett said Hillside’s greater capacity meant vehicles would not be off the road for long periods.
Communications Director Joseph Westrich will soon begin a 9-1-1 education program in Lincoln County schools, kindergarten through grade three, and will meet March 14 with the Wiscasset School Safety Committee on issues of emergency response.
Casey Stevens was monitoring this week’s snowstorm and coordinating with Central Maine Power in case of power outages. He is planning a set of Red Cross shelter workshops, and is working on the amateur radio vehicle, including adding wooden shelving to protect the radios while the vehicle is in transit, and adding an antenna to the roof. He informed the commission, FEMA is overwhelmed with disaster issues, and it will take longer than expected for the towns to have trained people help with the funding requests. There is also a hazard mitigation grant opportunity, which will address some of the issues that came to light in the October windstorm.