Selectmen Deny Guido's Dig Request

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Popular Beach Night Club May Not Open For Summer

By Patrick Cronin

Hampton Union, Friday, April 27, 2007

[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online.]

HAMPTON -- A popular local night club may not be able to open this summer after the Board of Selectmen denied the business owner's request to dig up K Street to install a required sprinkler system.

Selectmen denied the trench permit request on behalf of Guido Murphy's because the street was just redone as part of the $12 million sewer infrastructure project.

Fire Chief Hank Lipe said without the sprinkler system, which is required under law, the establishment will not receive occupancy permit from the Fire Department.

Selectman Ginny Bridle-Russell said the owner, Dan Traficante, has no one to blame but himself.

The town's current policy states no work can be done on a road paved for less than five years without approval of the Board of Selectmen.

"We didn't shut down his business," Bridle-Russell said. "He shut down his business. He knew for two years that he had to do this work."

Bridle-Russell said Traficante was notified in 2005 that he would have to install the sprinkler system and should have done so when the road was being worked on.

Selectman Bill Lally said allowing the newly paved road to be dug up is not fair to taxpayers who spent $12 million on new sewers and associated infrastructure at the beach.

"You snooze you lose," Lally said. "This isn't something he just found out about. He knew he had to get this done and should have done it when he had the chance."

Administrative Assistant Maureen Duffy said representatives from Aquarion Water Co., who made the request of behalf of Guido Murphy's, have scheduled an appointment with the board on May 14 to persuade selectmen to change their mind on the issue.

Meanwhile, the board denied a similar trench permit request from Northern Utilities to dig up Tuttle Avenue. Bridle-Russell said selectmen denied that permit for the same reason as the one for Guido Murphy's.

"I have no problem if a new development that wasn't planned for needs (to open the road)," Bridle-Russell said.

But, she said, the business owners or developers who have been denied "knew for two years, and they didn't do anything about it for whatever reason."

The board recently adopted a new policy on trench requests to protect the town's investment. If selectmen approve the request, the company performing the work will have to do more than just a regular patch job to protect the town's investment.

The new policy states the company will have to perform larger patches and overlays and put $15,000 cash into escrow account to assure it's done right.

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