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January 17, 2008

Selectmen back warrant items, except for highway job

HAMPSTEAD - Selectmen voted unanimously to recommend all warrant articles under their control, with one notable exception.

Road agent Jon Worthen wants a part-time highway position to be made full time. The move would cost $27,000 for a partial year's wages for the laborer/equipment operator position. In addition to the wages, the benefit package for the full-time position would average $2,046 a month.

Selectman Jim Stewart earlier asked Worthen to provide figures showing the outlay of $27,000 plus benefits could be justified by reducing the amount of work outsourced.

"I asked for information that this move would be a cost saver," Stewart said. "I can't get to that number, so I move we vote to not recommend this article."

The rest of the board agreed.

In other business, the board approved fire Chief Chip Hastings spending of $2,542 from the telephone equipment line to replace the station's phone system, which must be done immediately.

Selectmen also decided to discontinue the policy of selling sand and salt to individuals, effective Feb.1. Such sales have become a hassle, according to Worthen, and the town needs the salt and sand itself.

Hampstead Area Water Co. was granted its request to run a water line along town-owned Witcher Road, which is closed. The line will provide a water line to Village Square businesses. In exchange, Hampstead Area Water Co. will install a fire hydrant on the line near the Village Square parking lot.

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