WATERVILLE — The Waterville City Council voted 7-0 on Tuesday night to end municipal trash collection — beginning July 1 — at mobile home parks.

A proposal is pending before the Planning Board to add 65 lots to the Village Green mobile home park off West River Road, and city officials said this would be a good time to reexamine the practice of collecting trash at such parks.

The city’s solid waste ordinance says single-family homes and apartment buildings with four or fewer units are eligible for city trash collection, but mobile home parks, which are commercial operations, are not mentioned in the ordinance.

During Tuesday night’s meeting, livestreamed for the public via a link on the city’s website (waterville-me.gov), Councilor Claude Francke, D-Ward 6, noted there is ambiguity in the ordinance about who is eligible for city trash pickup.

Francke recommended the ordinance be amended to ensure mobile home parks fall into the same category as larger apartment buildings.

“That’s a good point,” City Manager Michael Roy said. “I think we should do that. Thank you.”

Waterville now collects trash at Countryside and Punky Meadows mobile home parks, which have 118 and 51 units, respectively, off West River Road, and at Pooler’s Park Way, with 30 units off Grove Street.

In 2014, Village Green decided to discontinue city trash collection and use dumpsters instead. L/A Properties of Lewiston owns Countryside, Punky Meadows and Pooler’s Park Way, and recently bought Village Green.

L/A Properties had requested the city resume trash collection at Village Green, which would add the trash of 140 more homes, but city officials say the city’s trash and recycling truck is at or near capacity now. Trash disposal for mobile home parks costs the city nearly $15,000 a year.

Council Chairman Erik Thomas, D-Ward 7, said the city has been talking about having trash collection go to four days instead of five. By eliminating mobile home parks from the collection route and having schools use dumpsters, that may be possible, according to Thomas.

In other matters, the council voted 7-0 to discuss a request — not on the meeting’s agenda — to authorize Roy to execute a purchase and sale agreement for the Robert Napior Revocable Trust to buy a lot for $62,500 in the city-owned Business Industrial Park on Airport Road.

The council then voted 7-0 to allow Roy to execute the agreement.

Councilor Rick Foss, R-Ward 5, asked what the owner wants to do with the property. Roy said he was told by the broker the owner wants to develop a marijuana-growing operation there. The council was asked to take up the request because the offer is set to expire Friday.

Roy said he thought the offer was reasonable, especially given the city’s asking price had been $64,900 for a long time.

Councilors also voted 5-2 to refer to the Planning Board for public hearing and recommendation a request to create a solar farm zone in which the only permitted use would be solar farms. Foss and Councilor Sydney Mayhew, R-Ward 4, voted against the move, saying they did not think solar farms should be in rural residential areas.

Mayor Nick Isgro agreed with Foss and Mayhew, saying solar farms turn into toxic waste dumps and there is no way to safely dispose of materials in them.

But others, including Thomas, said the property owner who wants to build a solar farm should have the opportunity to present his proposal to the Planning Board, which also should have the chance to review it.

The Planning Board does not vote on the request for a new zone. Instead, it makes a recommendation to the council, which makes a final decision.

“Without seeing the site plan or details,” Thomas said, “it at least merits a discussion.”

The council also voted 6-1, with Foss the lone dissenter, to refer to the Planning Board for public hearing and recommendation a request to amend the city’s zoning map. Kevin Violette of Holmes Farm Associates is requesting the council rezone part of a property on County Road from Rural Residential to Solar Farm District to allow a solar farm to be constructed there.

Also on Tuesday night, councilors voted 7-0 to:

• Give final approval to a municipal partnership agreement with the state to add a left turn lane from Main Street onto Waterville Commons Drive for motorists traveling north on Main Street. The city would pay half of the project’s $60,000 cost.

• Give final approval to an amendment to the public safety ordinance that would add a fee schedule for emergency medical services. The fee schedule would be effective May 1.

• Authorize Roy to advertise that three single-family houses that the city acquired because of nonpayment of taxes are for sale. The homes are at 3 Abbott St., 4 Union Place and 70 Violette Ave.

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