Poland voters to decide budget, marijuana ordinance

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POLAND — Residents will vote on a budget and a recreational marijuana ordinance at their annual town meeting Saturday, April 7. 

The meeting will begin at 9 a.m. in the Poland Regional High School Auditorium. According to the town charter, a minimum of 100 registered voters are required to conduct business. 

The Board of Selectpersons has recommended a budget of $6.63 million for the fiscal year 2019, an increase of $206,000, or 3.1 percent, from this fiscal year.

The board plans to transfer $160,000 from tax increment financing accounts to keep the tax rate at $14.74 per $1,000 of property valuation. 

In a letter to Poland residents, the board said the budget was “prepared with the goal of preserving the highest possible services being provided to the residents, visitors, and businesses of the town while keeping taxation and other charges for services at a minimum.” 

A total of 28 warrant articles will be voted on.

Residents will also vote on a moratorium ordinance on retail marijuana establishments and social clubs. 

According to the ordinance, this includes retail marijuana stores, retail marijuana cultivation facilities, retail marijuana products manufacturing facilities and retail marijuana testing facilities in town. 

The moratorium is for six months.

“The intent is to preserve the opportunity to make a decision one way or the other once the law becomes clear,” Town Manager Mathew Garside said of the ordinance. 

If approved, the ordinance would take effect immediately.  and would remain in effect for 180 days, unless repealed earlier by town meeting vote or extended by a vote of the Board of Selectpersons.

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