Utility Pole Project Cutting it Close

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polesST. JOHNSBURY - The town of St. Johnsbury is inching closer to finishing the “West Side Project.” The project, which has been ongoing for four years must come to an end and the Selectboard got closer to making that a realization last night.

At last nights meeting, Fairpoint associates came in to give the board an update after the last of their 52 utility poles were put up last week.

The poles provide service to a number of companies including Charter Cable, and the town fire alarm, among other things. However, the issue that still remains is getting companies who use the poles to transfer new wires into them.

The problem Fairpoint Communications is having, is that they are not able to transfer wires to the poles until the other companies do so. The town however, is concerned with the timing and money for the project. The town is using federal money for the completion of the project, and that budget runs out in the early fall. If the project is not completed by then, St. johnsbury will have to pay out of pocket to complete the project.

Town Manager, John Hall seemed a little flustered when asked about the project, saying; "We've just got pavement in there, because we can't put the sidewalk in until the poles are moved, and we don't want to incur that expense by literally running out of time."

The select board has asked Hall to plan a meeting with all involved companies as soon as possible.