There’s hope on the horizon for people in East Millinocket – town officials say there’s a potential investor in the shuttered mill.
The investor isn’t being identified at this point – and there’s one problem: North American Recovery Management (NARM), the company that bought the mill last March, might demolish it first.
People in town noticed heavy machinery arriving late last week.
Equipment the chairman of the Board of Selectmen says could be used to take down the entire mill.
“Every day you wake up and there’s the building. As long as they’re still standing, there’s still hope. And that’s the part – when that starts coming down, when the smokestacks start coming down, that’s when the heart falls out of you,” said Mark Scally, chairman of East Millinocket’s Board of Selectmen.
Clint Linscott is the owner of an auto body shop on Main St.
He didn’t want to talk on camera, but told me he isn’t suspicious of the size of the equipment.
He says even with the town’s lien on the mill, Linscott says he won’t worry until NARM begins demolition.
TV5 also spoke to the Maine Department of Environmental Protection’s Communications Director, David Madore, by e-mail.
He says NARM will need to submit an amendment to their existing permit in order to move forward with demolition.
TV5 learned NARM isn’t doing anything wrong yet.
Madore said by email: “DEP has been consistent in our message to the Town, applicant and interested parties that the owner is allowed to take equipment out of the buildings and can even cut a hole in an exterior wall to remove equipment, but that the structural integrity of the buildings cannot be compromised in the process.”
Town officials say they’ve reached out to NARM asking them to consider giving up the mill.
We’re told they haven’t heard back.
TV5 also reached out to NARM, with no response.