Carrabassett Valley moving forward with comprehensive plan

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CARRABASSETT VALLEY – A consultant has been selected for the town’s comprehensive plan update.

The town’s consultant selection committee made a recommendation for the lowest of three bids. The Musson Group, based out of Southwest Harbor, submitted a bid for $67,500. The other two bids were for $104,500 and $140,000. During the select board meeting Monday, January 23, the board reviewed the recommendation.

Town Manager Dave Cota reported that the Musson Group is a smaller firm with experience in comprehensive planning. In addition, the group was involved with the Katahdin Woods and Waters project and worked with the Penobscot Indian Nation and other tribes, experience that could be valuable with the work in Carrabassett Valley. Cota said that the Musson Group is prepared to help navigate planning needs with the retirement community, the housing situation, a recreation-based community, sustainability goals, and land use planning issues.

“It just seems like a perfect fit,” Cota said.

The select board approved the hire of the Musson Group as the consultant.

For the last three years the town has budgeted $15,000 annually towards the comprehensive plan update, which will be performed by a consultant, the comprehensive plan committee, and other town stakeholders. The hope is that the town will approve a total appropriation of $22,500 in this year’s budget, to fund the consultant entirely.

The comprehensive plan is expected to take a year or so, once the process starts. There will be surveys and public hearings as part of the planning process.

In other business, a public hearing was held to review a marijuana retail license renewal for Jar Cannabis Co., who recently secured the conditional license from the state as well. The business is under construction across the street from the Sugarloaf Regional Airport. The license renewal was approved unanimously.

The budget committee will be reviewing the budget on Wednesday, January 25, at the library at 5:30 p.m. An additional meeting is tentatively scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 26, at the same time and location.

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