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AYER — In a first for the town, Ayer has agreed to a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with a neighboring town for the purpose of providing wastewater services to Groton.

The MOU is the first under Ayer’s new policy requiring a formal agreement covering proposed connections between itself and other towns in relating to municipal services such as water or sewer.

The agreement with Groton, approved by selectmen at their meeting Tuesday, commits Ayer to providing a capacity of 40,500 gallons per day and allowing Groton to proceed with plans to install sewer service in its Four Corners commercial area.

In Groton, the proposal to create a sewer system for Four Corners ran into some controversy when officials there questioned the enthusiasm of the local businesses that stood to benefit by the connection.

Development in the neighborhood has been on hold for years at Four Corners due specifically to lack of adequate wastewater capacity with the empty lot where a former Chinese restaurant used to stand and the Shaws plaza with its empty storefronts and undeveloped construction sites mute evidence of the situation.

Although an earlier plan to sewer the Lost Lake neighborhoods and running the line through Four Corners and down Westford Road to connect with Ayer had been turned down by Groton residents, a connection dealing solely with Four Corners managed to receive the support needed for the project to move ahead.

According to DPW Superintendent Mark Wetzel, the proposed sewer line will extend from Four Corners in Groton and cross the town line along Westford Road into Ayer where the intention is to connect it into the existing sewer system.

The stretch of Westford Road in Ayer is not currently sewered but with the new project, commercial properties immediately over the town line and homes further up the street will have the opportunity to connect into the new system when it is completed.

The MOU approved by selectmen will allow the project to move ahead with construction to take place sometime next year.

Also at Tuesday’s meeting, selectmen voted to allow the Planning Board to hire a consultant to advise them on the proposed construction of a truck stop gas station off Littleton Road.

Board members were first asked to authorize the hiring at their meeting of July 14 but held off making a decision pending more details.

The board’s caution was underscored at the time by resident Matthew Kane who pointed out that a town bylaw specifically prohibited any business whose operations would interfere in the quality of life of nearby neighborhoods.

It was Kane’s contention that a 24-hour truck stop would present odors, noise, and light pollution far in excess of what residents needed to put up with.

While appreciating residents’ concern about the proposed truck stop, selectmen agreed to release funds for the consultant on condition the fee would not exceed $15,000.

Also Tuesday, board members:

* Recognized the town’s Cal Ripkin Little League baseball team as 2015 state champions.

* Voted to appoint Christopher Herrstrom as full-time dispatcher for the Police Department as well as Amanda Belliveau as office manager.

* Joined the Planning Board in joint session to appoint Mark Fermanian to fill a vacancy on the board created with the resignation of Kyle Gordon. Fermanian will serve until Election Day next spring when he would need to stand for election in his own right to keep his seat on the board.

* Voted to accept the deed for property located at 0 Park St. Located adjacent to the fire station, the property is to be purchased by the town for the amount of $250,000. Acquisition of the property completes an aim of the town to eliminate an existing easement there and to control drainage in the area. With its purchase, the town will own property that completely surrounds a swamp whose ownership has been determined to belong to a railroad company. Plans call for the railroad to be contacted to see if it would agree to transfer ownership of the landlocked swamp over to the town.

* Voted to open the warrant for fall Town Meeting. Selectmen are expected to approve the final warrant on Oct. 6 with the STM scheduled to take place on Oct. 26 at Town Hall.