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Under justice department orders, new culverts installed in Upham
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A section of Forest Road in the town of Upham will be closed for the next couple days, allowing for replacement of culverts along the creek flowing between Summit and Bass lakes.

Krueger & Steinfest’s big backhoes will likely make quick work of the project, a fast end to a lingering controversy that dates back several years.

“We were ordered to do this by the Department of Justice,” Pete Resch, chairman of the town of Upham said, explaining that the town faced hefty fines if the work was not completed in a timely manner.

The same watershed feeds Summit, Greater Bass, Waterpower, Deep Woods and a series of smaller lakes, and that has caused hard feelings between the various property owners during times of drought when lake levels can be dramatically altered.

The Forest Road culvert has long been a flashpoint, with each side accusing the other of altering or inhibiting stream flow. There have even been arrests and fines.

The Department of Natural Resources waded into the issue several times, holding public meetings and initially stating that the current culverts were at the correct depth before reversing course. It has also brought a flurry of engineering studies and, at times, dueling experts.

The issue finally came to an administrative judge last winter, who after three days of hearings, ordered the installation of the new, deeper culverts.
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Shane Krueger manuevers a big Krueger & Steinfest backhoe to begin the culvert work on Forest Road in the town of Upham this morning.
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