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by Jonathan Thomas
With an open winter allowing the Walker Pond access road widening to progress smoothly, the selectmen of Brooksville and Sedgwick have turned their attention to forestry management issues.
Meeting jointly as the Walker Pond Committee on February 8, the selectmen heard a presentation by licensed forester Jake Maier of Orland, and then voted to hire him to prepare a forestry management plan for the property that provides the only public access to the pond.
Maier estimated that the cost would be a little more than $1,000 for the 30-acre parcel. Later in the meeting the scope of plan was slightly increased to include a strip of Basil Ladd’s property over which the towns have an easement to place a section of the new road that bypasses a severe washout on the towns’ parcel.
Maier said that when he visited the site, he found it to be “a great area to do park-like management.” He said he has done similar work for the town of Bucksport and for the Great Pond Trust in Orland.
Noting the presence of large stands of mature spruce that are at risk of falling down, Maier said that, if harvested, such trees could produce revenue for the towns. His proposed management plan would indicate when and where cutting might be done while enhancing the value of the entire site for recreational purposes.
Former Sedgwick selectman Nelson Grindal said that because people have widely differing views on such issues, it would be important to have public meetings to discuss the plan when it is completed.
As the meeting ended, committee members discussed an unresolved issue of state reimbursement for a portion of the costs for the boat ramp installed last year.
The next meeting will be on Wednesday, March 14, at 9 a.m. in the Brooksville Town House.