New Gloucester board authorizes look at town charter

0

NEW GLOUCESTER — Selectmen on Monday directed Town Manager Carrie Castonguay to research the procedure for developing a town charter.

The decision follows a request from a group of residents who wanted the issue discussed at the Aug. 20 selectmen meeting, but were told that Chairman Steve Libby ruled that the agenda was too full, though he was absent. Castonguay had it on the agenda but was told by Libby to take it off.

At the Aug. 20 meeting, though, resident John Salisbury, a former executive director of Maine Municipal Association, addressed the board and presented printed information on charter commissions.

The group also asked that the issue be placed on the Nov. 6 referendum ballot,  but Town Manager Carrie Castonguay said selectmen would have had to approve that request at least 90 days beforehand.

In other business, Code Enforcement Officer Debra Parks Larrivee said the Ronald Henry property at 840 Lewiston Road is in violation of a home occupation violation/consent agreement dated Sept. 27, 2016.

The board learned that Henry had neck and back surgery in June and may not be physically able to address the problems.

Parks said Henry’s hobby material is mixed with his business equipment at his small engine repair business.

The board agreed to request that Henry get a confidential letter from his doctor telling the board what he is physically able to do and what limitations impact doing his job.

The board will review the information in early October instead of pulling his home occupation permit for now.

Finally, the board agreed with Libby that it would be premature to send bid requests for a townwide revaluation because spending money the capital improvement account requires voter approval. The town currently is at 82 percent of valuation, and needs to be at 100 percent. 

Advertisement