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Maine Alliance for Road Associations

MAINE SMALL CLAIMS COURT -- ANYBODY HAVE MORE INFO?

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  • 05 May 2010 12:35 PM
    Reply # 336007 on 225963
    Deleted user
    anonymous wrote:
    Todd Tolhurst wrote:
    Pat wrote:The court ruled that the person assessed must pay only for the portion of road that benefits that person. 

    Is that how your association chose to assess costs, or was that the court's conclusion?
    It was the courts decision.  It is in that person's deed that he is only responsible for from his parcel to the main road..and the judge upheld this.... of the road....which by the way was hottopped, and now is deteriorating......They had to have their hot top road....Now they are paying for it....The upkeep is tremendous..

    In answer to does anyone have small claims....... Unfortunately we have actually had a little experience with small claims court proceedings and road associations. If you haven't figured it out by now we have a very dysfunctional road association. We have a party of three who run everything, by the rules or not! What rules? There are none? That's nice and safe nothing to be held accountable to! Well actually they change the rules as they go, to their personal benefit or the benefit of their agenda. There's that word benefit again! It's actually up to these three, the commissioner, the moderator, the sec/treasurer as everything is. They either keep their positions from year to year,or trade off with one another to continue to control everything . Heck one of these people doesn't even own property here. He's just married to someone who does. At the majority of meetings no one else shows up. If they do show from time to time it's not to become informed , it's to rubber stamp what has already been decided between them . A number of abutters aren't even notified of the meetings because the powers to be don't think that they need to be association members because they have other ways to access their land even though they have ownership to the center line of the road through the discontinuance . For one of them it's a long distance of frontage. Guess what ? These three same individuals are in charge of winter maintenance, for they do the plowing , if that is what you want to call it ! They also decide when to call to have the road sanded. As no one else is allowed to call unless they pay for it themselves. We have a stretch of our road that has an incline, which can make it very slippery when not properly maintained, which is the majority of the time. Speaking of majority ! We were taken to small claims court for putting a stop payment on a check that we had sent in for winter maintenance . The reason for doing so was that the one and only time we requested to have the road sanded, was to insure that caregivers could make it here to care for a post operative homebound person (myself). My husband having previously informed the powers to be that if there was a storm during this time frame that someone would be calling as he was going to be out of town for a few days. It was FIVE days before the road was sanded . As usual it gets sanded when one of them have a need. Some how their judgement carried more weight then ours. For the judge ruled that even though we felt the road needed to be sanded for the safe passage of vehicles if two other's felt it unnecessry then that was a majority , and it was a democratic process. The whole rest of the winter ( which wa months) my physical therapist had to come at the end of the day so that my husband could transport him up and down the road safely after work. It is our opinion that small claims court is a waste of time. Another time we would take a claim right out of small claims and get a lawyer, even if we had to take out a loan to do so. The district court here I have been told by many is notoriousely lacking and I would have to agree. Also the more these guys get away with ,the more embolden they become. For what it's worth in my opinion from our experiences: In regular court what it USUALLY boils down to is who ever has the most money wins! YOU PAYS YOUR MONEY AND YOU TAKES YOUR CHANCES! Good luck! Alanna Brown
    Last modified: 05 May 2010 12:35 PM | Deleted user
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