A long-term outdoor watering ban put in place in Peterborough last year due to the persistant drought in the state has been lifted.
Town Administrator Rodney Bartlett reported to the Select Board on Tuesday that one of the main reasons the town banned outdoor water use last year was that one of the town’s three wells, on Summer Street, was down for repairs. The town was striving to not put too much pressure on the remaining two wells.
With the Summer Street well back up and running, and drought levels in the southern part of the state dropping to either “abnormally dry” or moderate levels, Bartlett told the board he was comfortable with lifting the ban.
“If we have a normal wet spring and a summer with at least some amount of rain, we should be OK,” he said.
In other Select Board news, the board agreed to remove a pine tree from a scenic route section of Old Jaffrey Road. The tree is likely not in the right of way, said Bartlett, but is a threat to Eversource powerlines and is clearly dead. Eversource had agreed to cut the tree, and the town’s Highway Department to take it away, if the board agreed to the tree’s removal. The board agreed that the tree created an imminent hazard, and approved its removal.
The board also held a public hearing for feedback on a proposed car registration fee of up to $5, which would go into a reserve fund for pedestrian and bike improvements.
Resident Bob Lambert told the board that while $5 per car more a year didn’t sound like much, when taken into account with other increases – both to the budget and water and sewer bills – that it began to add up.
Another resident, Matt Waitkins, said that improving pedestrian access was good for a variety of reasons. “My opinion is that bike/ped infrastructure is an economic development tool,” said Waitkins. “Businesses want to know that a community supports all forms of transportation.”
Whether or not to implement the fee will ultimately be up to the voters, decided at the polls at ballot voting on May 9 at the Town Hall from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Ashley Saari can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 244 or firstname.lastname@example.org. She’s on Twitter @AshleySaariMLT.