8. What does "public easement" mean?

A public easement gives the Town the right – but not the obligation – to access a road for winter maintenance purposes.  It also gives the general public the right to travel over the road.  The Attorney General has opined that without public easements, the Town cannot legally justify continuing to plow public roads because this would be a use of public funds for private purposes.  Note that we do not anticipate that these public easements will increase public use of these private ways.  The Town will not advertise these roads as being open to the public or provide signage or any other indication on site that the roads are open to the public.  That said, if owners are concerned about public rights being granted to their road(s), they may certainly choose not to grant the public easement and to forego Town-provided plowing.

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1. 1. Why did the Town request Private and Special legislation 1723 for Windham?
2. 2. What is the problem?
3. 3. Why did this practice start, and what is the history of Windham plowing private ways?
4. 4. What is the best solution?
5. 5. If I live on a private road which is not plowed by the Town does this affect my property?
6. 6. If I live on a private way which is plowed by the Town does this affect my property?
7. 7. What do owners on private ways need to do in order for the Town to continue plowing?
8. 8. What does "public easement" mean?
9. 9. If my private way has a road association, do I need to do anything?
10. 10. If my private way road does not have a road association, do I need to do anything?
11. 11. What does a road association provide and/or do?
12. 12. What is the responsibility of the residents in these road associations?
13. 13. We have decided to form a road association. Is a non-profit approach best?
14. 14. What are the necessary steps to get organized if we do not have a road association?
15. 15. There is a lot of information to understand. Will the Town provide legal advice or guidance to move through this process swiftly?
16. 16. Who pays for this new road association and the ongoing cost of annual road maintenance?
17. 17. Do each of the identified town plowed private ways or areas have to form a Road Association or HOA?
18. 18. What if we as a road group cannot find a point of contact to organize the step-by-step process to set up the road association and subsequent obligations, or desire not to be involved?
19. 19. What are the private way road tallies, associations or not?
20. 20. We live on a private road not on the listing provided by the Town's website. Can we have our road added to the winter maintenance list?
21. 21. What if a road or area no longer wants to have the Town plow the road and does not want to comply with the basic road maintenance?
22. 22. Is there a listing of addresses on each private way road and a map?
23. 23. What is the cost of road improvements that may be necessary?
24. 24. Where can I find the Ordinance that was adopted regarding these Town Plowed private ways?
25. 25. Is my Private Road or Private Way defined in the Town Ordinances?
26. 26. How does LD 192 “An Act to Define the Responsibilities of Residential Property Owners for the Maintenance of and Repair of Private Roads” affect the Windham?
27. 27. Is there a check off list or summary description of items the Town will be reviewing for basic maintenance?
28. 28. Will the Street sign change from a private way sign to a public sign?
29. Summary