GROTON — Selectmen Monday decided to leave Squannacook Hall open on a “minimal basis” so as to allow its continued use once a week by the Boy Scouts.
The town’s use of the hall is expected to be sharply reduced after June 30 when the Recreation Department is terminated along with most of the activities it had scheduled for the building.
The board decided to keep the first floor of the building locked and allow the Boy Scouts use of the second floor.
Otherwise, use of the building will be limited with only minimal availability of utilities, such as heat, to keep the hall from deteriorating.
“Obviously, the building is in need of repairs,” said Chairman Fran Dillon. “I would be in favor of keeping it open on a minimal basis.”
Board member Peter Cunningham suggested the town see if any other groups are interested in using the building. He warned that if the building is perceived to be abandoned, the town will “run the risk” of creating the impression that it did not care what happened to it.
“I’m definitely not in favor of just shutting it down,” agreed Selectman Mihran Keoseian.
Keeping Squannacook Hall open on a minimal basis will cost the town about $10,300 a year. Currently, it is the only town-owned building with an historic value that has not been renovated in some way.
Plans call for the Building Committee to meet with town building maintenance supervisor John Estabrook to evaluate Squannacook Hall and determine what will need to be done to keep it from deteriorating any further. The group will then report back to the board.
Selectmen last Monday, also:
Received notice in a letter from Lawrence Academy head of school Scott Wiggins that the school’s annual contribution to the town will be $25,000.
Received notice in a letter from the Rev. Michael Alfano of his resignation as the chaplain for the town’s public safety departments. Alfano cited reassignment from Sacred Heart Parish as the reason for his resignation.
Announced that Groton had once more been named a Tree City USA in recognition of its efforts to preserve forest land and other conservation work.
Learned of the impending retirement of treasurer’s office employee Barbara Gale and treasurer Christine Collins’ plans to hire a suitable replacement as soon as possible.
Recognized Highway Department employee Don May for 20 years of service to the town and library employee Sharon Coss for 10 years of service.