BETHEL – The Oxford County Democrats met on Jan. 28 at the McLaughlin Auditorium, Gould Academy. County Democrats and a delegation of Gould Academy students from a government class were on hand.

Congressman Tom Allen of Portland was the featured speaker. He discussed the new Congress, including the initiatives passed in the first 100 hours, and answered questions.

County Chairwoman Cathy Newell opened the meeting with a welcome and introductions. The treasurer’s report was given by Mike Broderick, who announced that all bills have been paid and reports filed for the last reporting period.

Newell added that additional sponsorship contributions were received at the end of the year to cover the cost of the swearing-in event for the county candidates held on Jan. 1 at the Hotel Harris in Rumford, attended by 150 people.

The biennial election of officers was held, with re-election of officers to include Newell of Greenwood as chairwoman, Roy Gedat of Norway as vice chairwoman, and Broderick of Bethel as treasurer. Mary Dube of Canton was elected secretary, replacing India Haynes of Waterford, who did not seek re-election. Nancy Willard of Woodstock was elected as alternate representative to the Democratic State Committee, a new position.

Gedat reported on planned improvements to the Web site and the use of an e-newsletter. Greg Howard of Brunswick gave an update on the John Edwards campaign and provided information on the activities being conducted through and the Days of Action. Future meetings will include regular updates from presidential campaigns.

Sheriff Wayne Gallant reported on his first three weeks on the job. Rep. John Patrick reported on the legislative bus tour and on his work with the Citizens Trade Policy Committee.

Rep. Tim Carter also reported on the bus tour, including a visit to UMaine’s research and development sites. Sen. Bruce Bryant spoke about the school administrative regionalization and about his efforts to get funding for biorefineries.

Scott Christiansen of the Fractionation Development Center, of which Bryant is vice president, spoke about the siting process for the biorefineries. Rep. Terry Hayes was unable to attend the meeting as she was assisting with the College Goal Sunday event in South Paris.

Newell announced that the next meeting of the Democratic County Committee will be held on Sunday, March 25, at a location to be announced. Meetings are open to all who are interested in electing Democrats. Anyone interested in being added to the e-newsletter list may contact Newell at [email protected] or Gedat at [email protected]

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