West County Notebook

Buckland, Charlemont discuss highway garage land deal behind closed doors

BUCKLAND — The Board of Selectmen met for roughly an hour in executive session Tuesday night, to discuss a possible highway facility site, according to their meeting agenda. The reason given for the closed-door session was “to consider the purchase, exchange, lease or value of real estate, as open meeting might have a detrimental effect on the negotiating position of the town.”

The board has been looking for a place to put a highway garage since 2008, when the old town highway garage on Conway Street was closed, after it was deemed unsafe and structurally unsound by Building Inspector James Hawkins.

Meeting in the closed session with selectman was the town’s Highway Superintendent Steve Daby and Charlemont’s Board of Selectmen. The Charlemont board was in the meeting for about 30 minutes, with the Buckland board remaining in executive session afterward.

Culvert question near Red Gate Farm

BUCKLAND — Selectmen have asked engineer Dan Lawrence of Weston & Sampson to examine a culvert on Norman Road, near Red Gate Farm, to see how to how it can best be repaired to resolve washouts on the driveway leading to the educational farm, without redirecting the water onto other property. The board is to take up the issue of culvert repair with Ben, Ted and Caroline Murray, who own the land or run the education farming facility, at a future meeting.

Can Buckland save more on electricity?

BUCKLAND — Selectman have put off renewing the town’s contract with the Hampshire Regional Council of Government’s “municipal aggregation” to buy electricity, because the town isn’t saving money on its electricity costs, according to selectmen. The board said joining the municipal, bulk-buying program saved the town about $2,000 in electricity costs the first year, but savings in subsequent years have dwindled. This year, selectmen believe the town has lost money in the program.

The board wants to invite a COG representative to a future meeting, to discuss why the town isn’t saving money any longer.

Buckland parking ban in effect

BUCKLAND — The town’s winter parking ban takes effect on Sunday and runs through March. Last year, the town tried to impose the ban only during snowstorms, using its “Reverse-911” to notify residents of overnight bans. This year, the selectmen are returning to a uniform winter parking ban.

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