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Selectmen Renew Attack on “Double Poles”

Selectmen are renewing their efforts to pressure utilities to eliminate double poles, such as this one on Main Street.

The Board of Selectmen vowed last month to press utilities about eliminating the dozens of "double poles" throughout the town, as well as going after banks to better maintain any foreclosed properties they now own.

John Caezza of 292 Main St. met with the board to complain about the double poles, noting there were nine alone in the five-tenths of a mile between his Route 16 home and the intersection of Route 140. Referring to the 1976 movie, Network, he echoed a character's cry of "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore."

Selectman William Buckley said he was going to bring the same issue up for the board to discuss that night. "There's no question" that the poles are an eyesore and sometimes a safety hazard, he said. "This problem has grown out of control and I think it's worse than [it was] a couple of years ago." Buckley said. "These poles have been there for years in some cases," he added.

"We've been equally frustrated to try to get the cooperation between National Grid, the cable companies and all other involved," Chairman Brian Murray said. "It's been quite a few years since we've paid attention to double poles," he noted saying the worst ones are just being "held together by Band-Aids and Scotch tape."

Town Administrator Louis Celozzi said he recently received several complaints about the double poles and contacted both National Grid and Verizon about them. He suggested having Fire Chief John Touhey work with National Grid on the issue. "I think the problem is getting worse," he said

Caezza also noted that his section of Main Street is not part of the multi-million-dollar road reconstruction project going on along the rest of Main Street and noted the need for new concrete sidewalks and granite curbs along where he lives. Murray said he would contact Highway Surveyor Scott Crisafulli to see whether there are any plans for the town to do the requested work. "I appreciate you bringing this information forward," the chairman told Caezza.

"My friend used to tell me, 'If the baby don't cry, Mommy don't know when to change the diaper.' Well, I'm crying," Caezza stated.

Buckley also brought up the issue of some foreclosed-upon properties looking unkempt, and wanted the town's Neighborhood Task Force of inspectors and Town Counsel Gerald Moody to work on finding out just who owns such overgrown properties. "The neighbors deserve better," he said. "We have banks and utilities contributing to our blight," Buckley added.

"It does take time," commented Selectman Dino DeBartolomeis. "You just have to make it a priority."

In other business, selectmen approved a one-day wine and malt beverages license for a wedding anniversary party being held at the St. Mary's church Parish Hall from 2 to 10 p.m. on August 5; approved Crisafulli's request to remove a "Caution – Deaf Child" sign in front of 5 Myrtle St.; and, approved the Fire Deparment's request to hold a "toll road" for Muscular Dystrophy from 9 a.m. to noon on September 15 in front of the Spruce Street Fire Station.


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