GILFORD – An electronic message sign that indicates how fast a vehicle is driving has been installed on Rte. 11-A near the intersection of Alvah Wilson Road but it's not the original sign the town purchased.
The initial purchase, completed in April of 2014, was a electrically operated speed sign that cost $4,545; however, when the town learned that Public Service of New Hampshire was going to charge them $5,300 to run the necessary power line to a transformer that was two poles away.
The solar-powred sign that was installed yesterday was purchased for about $300 more than the first one.
The electrical traffic sign is for sale at a discounted rate of $4,100 or best offer, Town Administrator Scott Dunn told Selectmen Wednesday night, but nobody seems to want it.
Dunn told selectmen that he contacted the company that sold the town the sign and asked them if they would sell it on consignment for them but was told no.
"They want to sell brand new units still in the box," said Dunn.
Selectman John O'Brien said he would like to see a speed sign on Rte. 11-A on the other side of the Gilford village as well and wondered if there was a pole with a transformer where the town could install it.
Selectman Gus Benevides said he only wanted one sign and would need to know the costs of electricity and installation.
Department of Public Works Director Sheldon Morgan said that PSNH charges about $250 to connect it to a meter and Lt. Kris Kelley said that once installed, it would use about the same amount of electricity as a 40-watt light bulb.
Both Morgan and Kelley said they were working on a way to retrofit the electrical sign with a solar panel. Selectmen Richard Grenier said he has a solar panel that he thinks will work.
"Do we keep it, do we reduce the price, or do we keep trying to settle this?" asked Benevides.
Grenier said he favored tabling the matter until he, Morgan and Kelley could see if they could retrofit it and the other two agreed.