NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

March 19, 2013

Questions surround future of former Grange land

Officials say deed restrictions on property now moot

(Continued)

But because legally the statute of limitations is 30 years for this type of deeded restriction, McCarron contended the point is moot and the town now owns the land outright.

When the question was raised a few weeks ago during a discussion with the Board of Fire Engineers, selectmen said they believed the town had fulfilled any obligation it had to the Grange in regards to the land deal. They stressed at the time that they had not heard from any residents who felt that the town’s decision to hold onto the land was unfair to its neighbor.

After briefly discussing Follansbee’s letter, Selectman Dick Cushing last week asked to have it added to a file of other letters he said the board has received regarding the recent discussion over the potential closing of the fire station.

At the same meeting, selectmen also received a letter from Sandra Capo supporting the adoption of a hunting policy on town-owned land. Selectmen have tasked a committee of hunters to develop a policy for bow hunting deer, which the board will then discuss and possibly adopt. Capo favored the idea because her youngest son contracted Lyme disease and she feels it is a matter of public safety.

Also, fire Chief Scott Berkenbush has asked to surplus three pieces of equipment: a Fisher 8-foot minute-mount snowplow and two generators. He said the items are “beyond their serviceable life. When selectmen wondered whether the snowplow might be of use to the highway department, Public Works Director Gary Bill saidd, “If I wanted it, I wouldn’t have given it to them in the first place.”

And Finance Director Warren Sproul told selectmen that it is possible the budget sequestration now in place at the federal level could impact the town’s bonding and indebtedness for the Page School renovation project to the tune of an additional $3,200 in supplemental assessment.

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