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Maine Alliance for Road Associations

Benifited

  • 30 Apr 2010 12:21 PM
    Message # 333586
    Deleted user
    Does anybody out there have any information as to what " benifited by" actually means beyond the obviouse, as in who determines who benefits and by what use, as in ,overtraffic ,seasonal,abutting, etc. ? I would appreciate hearing from anyone who has insight into this area of title 23 language, who is also willing to put their name on the response. As I don't trust that some of my midcoast maine neighbors wouldn't use this forum to misinform to their own benefit. Grateful to have found MARA.! Alanna
  • 01 May 2010 11:17 AM
    Reply # 334035 on 333586
    Deleted user
    Does private way carry a public easement on a private Rd. as a result of a road discontinuance where the road reverted back to the abutting owners with a right of way to abutters and owners then owning to the center line of the road. Also If one buys a parcel of land at the end of said road and one owns land on both sides of the road hence owning to the center line(as so stated in discontinuence] then the owner sells property on both sides of the road to different people selling only to the old right of way boundaries ( as stated in the old and new deeds) thus retaining the land within the right of way, then conveying a right of way for ingress and egress and utilities, does title 23 give the so called road association all rights within that right of way not just the traveled way to the road association? I somewhat understand the maintenance and repair part of the associations rights. Some of my neighbors feel that they have the rights past their deeded rights to the stone wall and property lines to the center line of the right of way simply because it was once that way years ago . So to clarify my question under title 23 can they vote by majority to cut trees clear brush etc. for their own purposes with in the right of way that has nothing to do with the traveled way ?
    Last modified: 01 May 2010 11:17 AM | Deleted user
  • 01 May 2010 8:41 AM
    Reply # 334040 on 334035
    Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Alanna Brown wrote:Does private way carry a public easement on a private Rd. as a result of a road discontinuance where the road reverted back to the abutting owners with a right of way to abutters and owners then owning to the center line of the road. Also If one buys a parcel of land at the end of said road and one owns land on both sides of the road hence owning to the center line then the owner sells property on both sides of the road to different people selling only to the old right of way boundaries ( as stated in the old and new deeds) and retaining the land with in the right of way conveying a right of way for ingress and egress and utilities, does title 23 give the so called road association all rights within that right of way not just the traveled way to the road association? I somewhat understand the maintenance and repair part of the associations rights. Some of my neighbors feel that they have the rights past their deeded rights to the stone wall and property lines to the center line of the right of way simply because it was once that way years ago . So to clarify my question under title 23 can they vote by majority to cut trees clear brush etc. for their own purposes with in the right of way that has nothing to do with the traveled way ?
    1."Does private way carry a public easement on a private Rd. as a result of a road discontinuance where the road reverted back to the abutting owners with a right of way to abutters and owners then owning to the center line of the road." >>>>Public easements are usually the result of a town road being discontinued and the town retaining the public "easement" or right to travel over it but the town does not have to maintain it. This does not sound like the situation you describe, at least not from the facts you present.  You might check with the town to see if there is a public easement over the road.  

    2. "Also if one buys a parcel of land at the end of said road and one owns land on both sides of the road hence owning to the center line then the owner sells property on both sides of the road to different people selling only to the old right of way boundaries ( as stated in the old and new deeds) and retaining the land within the right of way conveying a right of way for ingress and egress and utilities, does title 23 give the so called road association all rights within that right of way not just the traveled way to the road association?"" The road association may form under the law to maintain and repair the road. That's all. What you mean by "all rights within that right of way not just the traveled way" I don't know. 

    3. "So to clarify my question under title 23 can they vote by majority to cut trees clear brush etc. for their own purposes with in the right of way that has nothing to do with the traveled way?" Cutting trees and clearing brush that has nothing to do with the repair and maintenance of the road does not sound to me like a valid function of a road association. It sounds liek they want to "beautify" but that is not repair or maintenance.

    I am not a lawyer and this is not legal advice. I am a private individual volunteer who has over the years learned something about road associations. I am just telling you what I think. I hope it helps. If anyone else feels able to post on this, please do. 
  • 01 May 2010 11:58 AM
    Reply # 334116 on 333586
    Deleted user
    Kudos to Betsy for taking this on.  Looks to me that legal advice will be needed here.  It might be useful to determine exactly the dimensions of the road as we have removed some hazards to the town snowplow but they were well within the road dimensions and twe risked losing the plowing and no one wanted that.  Also keep in mind (as Betsy said) that the law is very specific when it says you can maintain the road.
  • 02 May 2010 1:11 AM
    Reply # 334279 on 333586
    Deleted user
    Thank you Betsey for sharing your opinions. I really appreciate your time. What I mean by traveled way is the actual road surface that can be and usually is more narrow then the right of way. Does this clarify my meaning? Do you or anyone else out there have any insights for me on what Benefited means, as was asked in my first email? Alanna Brown
  • 02 May 2010 8:24 AM
    Reply # 334323 on 333586
    Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Alanna Brown wrote:Does anybody out there have any information as to what " benifited by" actually means beyond the obviouse, as in who determines who benefits and by what use, as in ,overtraffic ,seasonal,abutting, etc. ? I would appreciate hearing from anyone who has insight into this area of title 23 language, who is also willing to put their name on the response. As I don't trust that some of my midcoast maine neighbors wouldn't use this forum to misinform to their own benefit. Grateful to have found MARA.! Alanna
    The context in which this is used is: "Call of meeting.  When 4 or more parcels of land are benefited by a private road, private way or bridge as an easement or by fee ownership of the private road, private way or bridge, the owners of any 3 or more of the parcels, as long as at least 3 of the parcels are owned by different persons, may make written application to a notary public to call a meeting." 

    This means that when a road "benefits" (i.e., can be used to provide access to) four or more parcels, three of the owners of a parcel can form a road association. They can be seasonal or non-seasonal owners. The owners just have to use the road to get to their land. Access is the purpose of a road that is being alluded to here and it is the function road law tries to preserve (along with protecting the environment more recently). (MARA tries to preserve community, too.) 

    I don't understand what you mean by "overtraffic" or "abutting" in terms of some other kind of use. 

    Anyhow, "benefited" is qualified first by "parcels" and then by "owners of parcels." People (the "general public") who may benefit from a road somewhere but do not own parcels that this road benefits, i.e., own parcels somewhere this road does not reach, do not come under the section. If somebody owns a parcel that benefits and wants to form an association, it's OK to try. If somebody accesses a parcel using the road but does not own the parcel, it's not OK. If somebody who owns a parcel that the road accesses who wants a beautiful road with blinking lights on the branches of the trees in winter wants to try and form a road association, OK, but that person is not going to even be legally able to try to get the majority of the people who are in the association (assuming it gets formed) to vote to get the blinking lights. 

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