Cool heads prevail in dispute over Andrews park work

Hot tempers were cooled and a tense atmosphere was relaxed after the Andrews Town Council helped resolve a dispute at its meeting on Monday, June 15.

Problems arose around the reconstruction of the pavilion at Andrews Park, which was being done at no cost to the town by the Andrews Volunteer Fire Department.

Andrews Fire Chief Tom Wuensch says that a few members of the Andrews Parks Commission, which had been overseeing the cleanup of the park, believed that some members of the fire department were "stealing" materials from the work site.

Wuensch says that several members of the fire department were fed up with the continued accusations and "about left" the site.

Part of the disagreement turned out to be some miscommunication between the two groups.

Wuensch did say that some of the supplies used in the construction of the pavilion were taken to a fire department member's house for safekeeping from the weather, but they weren't actually stolen.

"We'll gladly finish building," Wuensch said to the town council. "Assure me that (members of the parks commission) will not be at the park during construction."

Linda Wright, of the parks commission, was also present at the meeting. She thanked the fire department for its work and did not comment on what had been said by other members of the commission.

Wright did mention benefits that the commission had already seen since the cleanup began. She said that a schedule of activities has been put together and that teenagers are cleaning up after themselves and are also asking for equipment - including trash cans. She also presented a list of items that the parks commission was looking into purchasing in the future.

The quarrel was resolved after both sides agreed to let each other finish their work to benefit the town as a whole. Councilman Karl Shockome asked Wright to be the "liaison" between the parks commission and the town council to prevent any future disputes. This means that if any member of the parks commission has a problem or concern, he or she is asked to speak to Wright, who will then speak to the council directly.

In addition, the council passed two resolutions which designate the former Dana facility on Jackson Street as an "economic revitalization area." These resolutions exempt Transwheel Corp. from a set amount of taxation for a 10-year period. Transwheel Corp. will be moving into the former Dana building and will potentially provide 65 new jobs.

An ordinance defining public nuisances and the actions the town can take was also approved.

Both resolutions and the ordinance are on file in the Andrews Clerk/Treasurer's office.