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ASK Program

The 2016 Application and Decision Making Process: we invite proposals from Town Managers, Boards of Selectmen, or the County Commissioners by Friday, March 25, 2016 with decisions by late April. LCRPC hopes to award 3 to 5 grants this year. We will schedule a site/town visit during the review process and at the conclusion of the grant. Towns which received an ASK grant in previous years are eligible to apply if all Final Project Reports for earlier grants have been submitted by the 2016 application deadline.

Questions? Please call 882-5983. Applications may be emailed to [email protected], mailed to the LCRPC, 297 Bath Road, Wiscasset, ME 04578, or delivered to our office. Please call or email if you have questions. 

Go HERE for application details.

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2015 ASK AWARDS TO BREMEN, WESTPORT ISLAND AND BRISTOL/DAMARISCOTTA

The ASK (Assistance with Specific Know-How) grant program was started 4 years ago by the LCRPC to provide timely technical assistance for local public infrastructure or facilities, business attraction or retention, or health and safety issues.

Bremen’s Heath Road Bridge is a small two-lane bridge on a dead-end road off Route 32, spanning a rather deep, tidal river coming in off of Broad Cove. The bridge is a steel I-beam structure on concrete with composite (wood) piers, originally built as a wooden bridge, and re-spanned with steel in 1988. Because of extended exposure to salt and water, it’s needed more and more maintenance, and the support –piers and pilings—are beginning to deteriorate. Emergency repairs have been made. The Town has met with MDOT engineers who recommended that the bridge be replaced by 2021.

Bremen’s ASK grant of $2,000 is for partial funding to hire an engineer/consultant to look at alternative replacement options, and to help develop cost estimates. The bridge could cost hundreds of thousands of dollars – the Selectmen want to come up with the best option and put the replacement project into the Town’s 5- and 10-year Road and Infrastructure Plan. Setting aside funds in a reserve account ahead of time is fiscally responsible.

Westport Island has a very dedicated volunteer Fire Department. The Fire Station was originally built in 1963 and added to in the 1970s and 1991 – it’s primarily wood-framed, with some cinderblock exterior and interior walls. Construction has been done over time by volunteers from the community, partly with donated materials and without design/engineering support that would tie the various buildings together, handle the load of heavy equipment, and address the impact of heated/unheated areas. Then there’s general building aging, weather, and bigger equipment. 

The WVFD is the only public safety service on the island, providing fire prevention and response and medical first responder services, and traffic control for emergencies. The Station is the designated emergency warming shelter for town residents.

The Department has limited resources for maintenance and capital improvements, so the ASK award of $2,000 will go for a structural evaluation of the Fire Station, which will document current building conditions, verify code compliance issues, and provide information to help the Department in prioritizing repairs and improvements and in preparing a short- and long-term capital improvement plan. 

Bristol and Damariscotta have teamed up to address a number of concerns at the Bristol Mills Dam: improved waterflow for the alewives run; impact of changing water levels on property owners’ docks and beach areas; shoreline erosion; safety of swimmers; and reliability of a water supply for the Fire Department.

The Bristol Mills Fishway Project is planning to re-establish alewife access through the fishway, into the Pemaquid River chain of ponds. For property owners on Biscay, McCurdy, and Pemaquid Ponds, the water level can be too low, too high or fluctuating too much, and changing water levels can harm loons and other wildlife. Currently, the water level at the Dam is very difficult to manage with the existing spillway configuration.

Bristol and Damariscotta will match a $4,000 grant with town funds to hire an engineer to review the integrity of the dam, recommend alternative spillway features, and create a customized operations and management protocol to addressing the needs of all the communities affected.