Lewiston City Council, Ward 7, Michael Marcotte and Thomas Shannon

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Bio

Name: Michael Marcotte

Occupation: accountant

Education: Bachelor of Science in business administration

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Family: single

Political experience: county budget, Lewiston finance, Lewiston Planning Board

Questions

1. Why do you think you’re the most qualified, or best candidate for this seat? 

Lewiston is facing some challenging financial hurdles, and my past experience with county and municipal budgets will certainly help.

2. What do you believe is the biggest issue facing your city? Why?

There is a lack of quality employment opportunity. Too much effort has been spent on attracting nonprofits, selling municipal resources for a dollar, and advocating for projects that consume welfare dollars. 

3. What do you like about the city budget passed this year, and what don’t you like?

This year’s budget has done a good job with investment in Lewiston’s infrastructure, such as roads, sewer, fire apparatus, etc. This is where public spending is at its best. On the other hand, we tend to spend too much time, money, and effort on failed social programs, including public projects, which facilitate an ever larger drain on our treasury and tax dollars.

4. What is the best way for your city to boost economic development and its attraction to people from outside the region?

Lewiston’s Development Department needs to focus its energy on attracting private sector businesses and enterprises that employ people with an income level that exceeds today’s base levels. 

5. Do you support the merger of Lewiston and Auburn?

No.

Bio

Name: Thomas Shannon

Office sought: City Council, Ward 7

Occupation: retired, part-time grocery store employee

Education: Completed high school and attended the University of Maine.

Family: married the former Gale Ricker in 1975. She kept me. We have four adult children and eight grandchildren.

Political experience: I have served on the Lewiston School Board for the best part of the last three decades, and one term in the state Legislature.

Questions

1. Why do you think you’re the most qualified, or best candidate for this seat?

The last 20 years in Lewiston, we have talked a lot about economic development, and not accomplished a lot. Perhaps it is time for a different approach — a fresh look. 

2. What do you believe is the biggest issue facing your city? Why?

Economic development.  Changing our city to a growing, living, and desirable place to live is not a one-action fix. 

3. What do you like about the city budget passed this year, and what don’t you like?

Once again, the School Board and council funded education at the minimum local share. I think Lewiston residents want better than minimum local performance.

4. What is the best way for your city to boost economic development and its attraction to people from outside the region?

This answer is multi-faceted. Education, business incubation, maybe in an empty mill building, artisan incubation, maybe in an empty mill building, and perhaps working with the area hospitals to reduce duplicated services, and further improve specialized care at each site. We have moved only small, some say even baby steps, toward where we can be. Sunnyside Park and the river walkway need to be connected to Simard-Payne Park, and Simard-Payne Park connected to improvements along Lincoln Street and River Road. So much to be proud of in Lewiston. 

5. Do you support the merger of Lewiston and Auburn?

To be truthful, who cares? Auburn has done nothing that Lewiston can’t steal and use as our own. City government has not seen fit to do that — maybe because it isn’t better. Forget mill rates, and who is higher. How much tax (in dollars) is paid on a house worth $150,000 in either town? Compare that. A merger should bring benefits to both communities. If you don’t see a benefit for Lewiston in this merger, vote no. If you see a benefit for Lewiston in this merger, vote yes. I, if elected, will do all that I can to complete the work entrusted to me by the voters of Ward 7.

Michael Marcotte

Thomas Shannon

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