POMFRET-A resident has upped the cut-off date for the generator on his daughter’s land, which powers the town’s repeater.
Mike Barcomb was previously agreeable to letting the town to continue using the generator for six more months. But now he is giving the town until Monday to get a generator off his daughter’s land before he turns it off. The town has been left scrambling to find a quick solution.
“We are under a gun,” said Selectboard chair Mark Warner at a meeting on Wednesday. “We don’t have any time to play with this.”
The repeater is how fire departments, road crew and emergency personnel communicate with each other.
The repeater was placed on a private landowner’s property about 15 years ago because a survey determined that it was one of the best spots in town to maximize communication. But Barcomb’s daughter, who now owns the land, wants it off.
The board mulled paying $500 per month for an automatic start generator to be placed on a nearby home to recharge the repeater’s batteries. The generator is the smallest of the automatic starts available, according to Fire Chief Kevin Rice, but it’s still powerful enough to run a home.
“I don’t want to quiver if it’s really going to make things that much easier and more secure,” said Selectboard member Michael Reese.
The Selectboard has discussed putting solar panels on a nearby property in the long term, but it would take at least three weeks to install.
The board agreed to go with the temporary generator until it finds a long-term solution.