An appeal for a water and sewer abatement was made by Josepha Staton, the sister of Jacklyn Roderiques of 221-A Wareham Road, at the Marion Board of Selectmen meeting on Tuesday evening.
Staton addressed the Board, saying that her sister is legally blind and that she and her family help Roderiques, who is seeking an abatement of a water and sewer bill amounting to $10,836.61.
The largest amount of the bill occurred from February 18 until April 9. Roderiques said that nothing unusual has occurred, water-wise, during that time.
The Board, after hearing from Town Administrator Paul Dawson and from the applicant’s representative, voted and agreed to eliminate the sewer portion of the bill, which was $5,912.70. At issue was that the meter, which was tested and found accurate, showed an excessive water flow from February 18 until April 9, at which time it subsided. Roderiques said that she suspected a defective meter.
“We used to check our water consumption and report back on a card, and now we are subject to a roving vehicle which shows our consumption,” Staton said. “This problem came about because we no longer look at our meter on a six-month basis.”
The Selectmen agreed to review the water dye test and other information before making any decision on the water bill received by Roderiques. The Department of Public Works head, Rob Zora, will be invited to attend the next meeting and help explain the issues involved in the abatement request at the meeting to be held on June 18 at 7:00 pm.
In other business, the Selectmen said that Sherman Briggs sent a letter of resignation from the Conservation Commission. The Board accepted the resignation and thanked Briggs for his many years of service to the town.
“Sherm has spent many years in service to the town and we thank him for it,” Steve Cushing said.
“In addition to his time on the Planning Board and the Conservation Commission, he also served on the Bird Island Restoration project,” John Henry said.
Next, the Selectmen discussed a draft policy of a drug and alcohol policy for town employees and agreed to discuss it at the June 18 meeting.
The next discussion involved land, adjacent to the Baywatch 40B Project, which was offered to the town. The Board agreed to put it on the warrant for the October 28 Town Meeting for approval. If approved, the town would turn the land over to the Sippican Lands Trust for a conservation restriction.
The Baywatch 40B Project is “getting close to the permitting process,” according to Henry. Cushing asked about abutters asking to be tied into the water/sewer connection.
“This isn’t a barter situation,” said Town Counsel Jon Whitten. “This is an issue left to the Water and Sewer Commissioners.”
Under Correspondence, Selectman Jody Dickerson said that he wanted to send a letter thanking Tabor Academy for their effort in the community clean-up day.
“Tabor had volunteers who collected trash from Route 105, Point Road, and also had students help repaint the buildings at Silvershell Beach and at the Elizabeth Taber Library,” Dickerson said.
The Selectmen agreed that the letter should be sent.
Dawson spoke and said that repairs to the Marion Natural History Museum will start June 6 and will take three to four weeks to complete.
“We want to thank the Marion Department of Public Works for their enormous effort in moving and storing the contents of the museum and working those items that could not be moved,” Dawson said. “We need to thank Rob and his crew for the major effort in the project.”
The Selectmen discussed the July meeting schedule and determined that the BOS would meet on July 9 instead of the July 2 due to the holiday week. Also, the July 9 meeting, as well as the two August meetings, will be held at the Marion Police Station because they have air conditioning.
Another agenda item included discussion regarding a second water meter, which would meter outdoor watering that does not enter the sewer connection. Dawson said that he had several requests from Marion residents to look into this possibility. The Selectmen discussed it briefly and agreed that they should hear from the Department of Public Works regarding the meter costs and rates that would be suggested for a second meter installed at a residence. Henry suggested that the DPW attending the next meeting would have approximations of what the meter rates might be for a second meter.
Lastly, the Board discussed the resignation letter from Lori Schaefer from the Music Hall Advisory Committee and the Historical Commission. Schaefer was a former Selectman for the town and served on many boards and committees.
“I wish her the very best. She was a pleasure to work with,” said Dickerson, who served with Schaefer as a Selectman in the 1980s.
“She has served our town as a civil servant and has been a tremendous asset to our town,” Cushing said.
“She was the spearhead of the renovation of the Music Hall and we will be forever in her debt,” Henry said. “This letter from her is worth so much more than just this piece of paper, for sure.”
By Joan Hartnett-Barry