Hampstead Selectmen Discuss Some Safety Concerns in Town

By Alex Malm

HAMPSTEAD – During the July 12 Hampstead Board of Selectmen meeting one of the agenda items that was discussed was in regards to re establishing a crosswalk on School Street that was once there many years ago.
It was explained by Board of Selectmen Chairman Sean Murphy that when they repaved the road years ago they took it out and never replaced it.
A few years ago they inquired about how much it would cost to put the crosswalk back in but it didn’t go anywhere. Now the discussion has been brought up again.
“The discussion has resurfaced,” he said.
Murphy said that the cost would be roughly $50,000, as it would require extensive engineering work along with a lot of technology involved to install things like crossing signals.
Police Chief Joseph Beaudoin, Jr. said that it may cost more than $50,000 saying that the estimate is a conservative one since they will also have to install sidewalks in order to make it handicap accessible.
He said that the highway safety committee would be meeting soon to discuss the possibility of adding a crosswalk and would come back to the board of selectmen with a recommendation of what they think should be done.
During the liaison report Selectmen Joe Guthrie explained that since the library is in the process of putting up a new pavilion they also decided to examine the rest of the facility. One of the things that were determined is that they need better lighting in the parking lot of the Hampstead Public Library.
He said that he asked Rosemary Krol, the director of the library to get a proposal for new lighting and it was determined that it would cost about $9,000.
The main expense would be to remove the two existing poles in the parking lot and put up new ones.
Guthrie recognized the fact that it isn’t in the budget.
“I don’t think we have the money in our budget,” he said.
With that said they can use money from the town building and maintenance trust fund, which has over $40,000 in the account right now.
He said that they could spend the money on it since it’s a safety issue.
“I think it’s something that needs to get done,” he said.
In addition to the library having issues with a lack of lighting in the parking lot, he said that the town building also has a similar issue and is something they should look at since many meetings go late for different boards and it’s important to keep people safe.
The board of selectmen unanimously approved spending money from the trust for the new lighting.
In other news Sally Theriault, the administrative assistant for the Board of Selectmen said that they submitted the town’s application for the American Rescue Plan Act funding to the U.S. Treasury.
The next steps in the process she said is to start determining what projects, equipment or programs they want to support with the funds they receive from it.
She said that she will be meeting with department heads and already has preliminary reports from each of the departments about what they are looking for and will begin to determine if they fall into the guidelines of what it can be spent on.

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