A view of a junkyard at 1205 Royalsborough Road in Durham. Google Maps screenshot

DURHAM — The Select Board voted 4-0 Tuesday to table the discussion of a consent agreement which would give Priscilla Higgins until June 1 to clean up an illegal junkyard on her 1205 Royalsborough Road property.

Board members said they wished to clarify several points and add clauses to the consent agreement before voting on it.

The junkyard is operated by Ken Carll, who lives on the property.

During discussion, Chairman Kevin Nadeau expressed concerns that the agreement did not specify what actions the town would take if the property did not meet town standards by the stated date.

Selectman Richard George also questioned whether the town should even allow Higgins several months to clean up the property.

“These junkyards, and this one in particular,” he said, “we afforded them already extensions and time frames and this one, for whatever odd reason, hasn’t really still yet to date met any requirements that we set forth.”

According to Nadeau, other junkyards which have received extensions had preexisting licenses and the extensions were granted to allow time for them to meet requirements before applying for renewals.

He said the property at 1205 Royalsborough Road previously had a license, but it was not reissued because it did not meet the town’s requirements. One requirement is the junkyard must be contained within a 300- by 400-foot area, which this one does not.

“I think their goal is to get cleaned up and shielded enough so that they can reapply for the permit,” Nadeau explained.

Selectmen and Town Manager Kathy Tombarelli discussed whether the town should even be open to issuing a junkyard license for the property.

“So I think questions to be answered, should we be treating this as if it’s already a junkyard or not, for instance, what is the standard for it to be cleaned up to, (and) does the Planning Bard need to issue a conditional use permit,” Nadeau said.

The board discussed the language of the consent agreement and agreed that it must not imply that the town will issue a license if the property meets town and state requirements.

“So what we really need to do is make sure that the wording is, if you bring this into compliance by that date, it needs to be clear that you still got a review process that you need to go through with the Planning Board and you still need a license from the Select Board,” Tombarelli said.

In other business, the Select Board voted 4-0 to renew a contract with the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office for Public Safety Answering Point and dispatch services. The town will pay the county $21,625.76 for the service in 2022.

“They’re doing a good job for us, there’s a point of contact (for) any issues, everything comes over, we can work with them,” Fire Chief Robert Tripp said at the meeting.

Additionally, Road Commissioner Calvin Beaumier spoke about road repairs to David Louis Drive. On Oct. 31, a culvert underneath the road failed as a result of heavy rain and a beaver dam that collapsed upstream during the storm.

The culvert was cleaned and a beaver dam removed prior to the storm, however Beaumier said the beavers built another dam upstream. Public Works crews and Durham Fire Rescue put in a temporary road surface after the failure was discovered, and the town is working to restore the road.

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