A small crowd turned out to witness the auction of the Clary Lake Dam on the steps of the Lincoln County Courthouse Jan. 29, the result of mortgagee Medius L3C’s foreclosure on the property. Jefferson resident and Clary Lake waterfront owner Butch Duncan submitted the only bid at the auction, which drew spectators from the Clary Lake Association and the Maine Attorney General’s Office.
According to auctioneer Greg Dorr, the winning bidder was to be notified on Feb. 1. As of press time, however, neither Duncan nor Paul Kelley, manager of Pleasant Pond Mill LLC, the deeded owner of the Clary Lake Dam, had been informed of the result of the auction.
Days before the auction, Medius L3C’s registered agent changed – the registered agent is the only name associated with Medius L3C in the corporation’s filings with the Maine Department of the Secretary of State.
According to Dorr, he was contracted by the corporation’s former registered agent, Merritt Carey, to conduct the auction on behalf of Medius L3C.
Dorr was instructed to hand-deliver the bids received at the auction to the corporate office of Medius L3C, he said, which is listed as an address in Yarmouth in the notice of public sale.
Medius L3C’s address in Yarmouth is also Carey’s address. Reached on Feb. 2, Carey said she had no information about the auction, did not have the bids, and could not comment further.
Medius L3C changed its registered agent on Jan. 27, from Carey to Public Information Resource Inc., a Readfield company that provides registered agent services.
According to Kenneth Keene, of Public Information Resource, the paperwork listing his company as Medius L3C’s registered agent had just been received Feb. 2.
According to Keene, the role of the registered agent is to receive summons, subpoenas, and other forms of communication for the corporation. The address Keene was given to forward on information to Medius L3C is the Yarmouth address listed in the notice of public sale.
Public Information Resource is Medius L3C’s third registered agent since the corporation was formed on March 18, 2015. Keene was unaware of the auction or of any legal dispute related to Medius L3C or the company’s assets.
Medius L3C was assigned the mortgage on the Clary Lake Dam, previously held by Arthur Enos, in July 2015. The Clary Lake Dam, which impounds water for Clary Lake, has been the subject of a years-long legal battle over the lake’s water level.
Pleasant Pond Mill has been the subject of a Maine Department of Environmental Protection water-level order since 2014, which Pleasant Pond Mill and downstream property owner Aquafortis Associates LLC appealed in Lincoln County Superior Court.
On Jan. 25, the superior court issued an order dismissing Pleasant Pond Mill from the
appeal. Aquafortis Associates was given 21 days to submit a revised appeal apart from Pleasant Pond Mill.
The Clary Lake Association, which petitioned the Department of Environmental Protection to establish and enforce the water-level order, was in the midst of negotiations with Pleasant Pond Mill to purchase the Clary Lake Dam, association spokesman George Fergusson said.
Negotiations for the dam ended when the Clary Lake Association was informed of the pending foreclosure and auction, Fergusson said. According to Kelley, Medius L3C made a demand for payment on the mortgage, which Pleasant Pond Mill could not make.
The negotiations with the Clary Lake Association were noted in a statement Dorr was instructed to read if the auction process was contested. According to the statement, the association did not respond to a demand for proof of funds when the transfer of the property was discussed and no public dispute regarding the auction would be entered into with any party unless a valid bid was received from them.
Duncan was the only party to submit a bid at the auction. He has been a vocal opponent of the Clary Lake Association’s effort to establish and enforce a water-level order. According to Duncan, the decreased water level has given him more land, which was previously submerged in water.
Duncan said he is willing to sit down and talk with the association to reach a compromise. However, Duncan has been advised by his attorney that if he were to assume ownership of the Clary Lake Dam, he could not be asked to enforce the water-level order, because it would cause him to harm himself, which would be a violation of his constitutional rights, he said.
According to the Medius L3C certificate of formation, the company’s purpose is “to provide education and information about, and to defend, promote, enhance, and/or rehabilitate the inland water of the state of Maine … Including their restoration and/or rehabilitation to natural or enhanced conditions.”
Medius L3C’s first registered agent, Amelia LaRoche, is the only name on the corporation’s certificate of formation. Several emails to Medius L3C were not responded to and efforts to identify and contact corporate officers were unsuccessful.
Kelley said he is not an officer or member of Medius L3C.