The Colebrook board of selectman addressed the issue of dust on South Hill Road at their meeting last Monday, which led into discussion of a key snowmobile trail that may be closed.
Vince Roscillo and his wife Michelle came to the board to notify them of a dust problem. "We can't utilize our outdoor space in the summer," Mr. Roscillo said. He said that there have been issues with dust on the road in the past, but it has increased since ATVs were allowed to use the road.
He asked that the town increase maintenance of the road given the increase in traffic. He also said taxpayers shouldn't have to pay the extra cost for the calcium chlorate needed, and suggested that the N.H. Trails Bureau could pay for it or reimburse the town.
Selectman Bob Holt asked if the state has any grant aid available. Colebrook Ski Bees president Clay Hinds said there are some funds, and agreed that taxpayers shouldn't "shoulder the burden" of the extra road maintenance. He observed that ATV activity has grown as much in two years as snowmobiling did in 40 years.
Mr. Roscillo said he and his wife have been supporters of the trails and don't want to see them closed, and said chloride would only be required in front of homes. Metallak ATV Club president Craig Washburn said he spoke to Chris Gamache and and asked them about money available to use extra chloride, but they won't have an idea of what funds would be available until they receive word on how much was made from registrations. Mr. Washburn also said he is looking into relocating some trails off the town roads where feasible.
Mr. and Mrs. Roscillo both asked for reassurance that something could be done, and Mrs. Roscillo said she felt they didn't have any leverage other than closing down the snowmobile trail (Corridor 21) on their property. Selectboard chairman Ray Gorman, who lives on a dirt road, agreed that there is a dust problem, but noted that the budget season is just starting and it is a long process. "I think it's going to be very difficult to say we'll add $20,000 or however much it will be," he said.
Selectman Jules Kennett also said the board can't guarantee a budget, but said they should get together with the state to see what can be done. "Our biggest obstacles are finding where the trails turn into roads and how much chloride is needed to make them better," Mr. Hinds said. Mr. Kennett said he could promise that the board would talk with Mr. Gamache and others to address the problem.
Mr. Hinds said on Thursday that the trail is currently closed, and he is working with the Bureau of Trails to make adjustments. "We're really confident everything is going to work out," he said. Corridor 21 serves as one of the main connectors to Stewartstown.