Section 12. If four or more persons are the proprietors and rightful occupants of a private way or bridge, and three of them make application in writing to a clerk of the district court of the district or the clerk of the city or town wherein the private way or bridge is located or to a justice of the peace to call a proprietors' meeting, the clerk or justice may issue his warrant therefor, stating the time, place and purpose of the meeting. The warrant shall be posted in a public place of the town in which such way or bridge is situated, seven days at least before the time appointed for the meeting. The proprietors and occupants so assembled shall choose a clerk and surveyor, who shall be sworn. They may determine the manner of calling future meetings, what repairs of the way or bridge are necessary and the proportion of money and of labor and materials to be furnished by each proprietor and occupant for such repairs. The surveyor shall have the same powers with respect to such way or bridge as are exercised by surveyors of highways.