Mark A. Cayer, 47

56 Webber Ave.

[email protected]

Occupation: Own and operate Maine Private Investigation Service, Lewiston.

Education: Lewiston High School; basic law enforcement classes, Maine Criminal Justice Academy, 1991; certified EMT.

Political Experience: Past member of SAD 9 board, Farmington Budget Committee, Farmington Appeals Board and Farmington Board of Selectmen. Lewiston city councilor since 2009.

Community Organizations: Board member, Maine Licensed Private Investigators Association; member, Androscoggin Chamber of Commerce; city Energy Saving Committee.

What is broken in your city? What problem do you perceive, and how will you, as an elected leader, fix it?

One of the biggest concerns I have with the city is its current debt level. I think we’ve worked on that over the past two years. Even though we’ve dealt with a $3 million reduction in state aid, we still managed to get a debt reduction discussion as a part of a workshop recently. We’ve made some moves toward reducing it.

I just think, considering the economic times we just went through, if our debt had been lower, we would have almost breezed right through our budget. Instead, the last two years were very challenging around the budgets.

What is your opinion of the casino? Would you urge Maine voters to support it or not? And why?

I’ve been pretty clear that I’m a supporter of the casino. I don’t think it’s the golden goose, however. I do think Lewiston has the infrastructure and the services to deal with a casino. It won’t have an impact on the citizens other than a financial gain, hopefully. I stand firmly that it’s not a golden goose and that we’ll have to pay attention to the citizens of Lewiston and the region to get the best deal possible.

What is your solution to improving Lewiston’s downtown housing stock, and why would it work?

We need to do exactly what we’re doing. We’re getting the message from the local citizens in that area and we’ve added a code enforcement officer to help address some of the urgent issues and the life-safety issues. And, we’re continually adding new housing. Although I consider it a significant problem in the city, I think we’ve been working on it for two years and I’m satisfied with what we’ve done.

Stephen Miller, 49

12 Lucille Ave.

[email protected]

Occupation: Realtor

Education: Some college

Political experience: None

What is broken in your city? What problem do you perceive, and how will you, as an elected leader, fix it?

I don’t know if anything is broken in the city. I think there are a lot of cracks. I think some things have slipped through and there’s a lot of  ‘us versus them’ between City Hall and the citizens in general. I think the first thing we need to do as elected officials is to get more of a bond between the two. You hear it right now when people ask ‘Did you hear what they’re doing at City Hall?’ It’s not about them and us. 

I really believe we need to listen to what the citizens say. We need a website or a Facebook page or a Twitter where people can respond to us and we can get the information out to them. Getting information from a newspaper is good, but it’s not interactive and that’s what we need.

What is your opinion of the casino? Would you urge Maine voters to support it or not? And why?

At this point in time, I think I really need to get more information on it. It doesn’t seem like a good idea at this point and the reason I say that is they want to put one in Biddeford, they want to put one in Lewiston, they already have one in Oxford. Can the state sustain four more, because there is one going already in Bangor? Maine is not the richest state to begin with and then we go to bring in the casinos/racinos and they are all guaranteeing 250 good jobs. Are these dealers and table runners? Are they going to be coming from out of state or will they be hired in state? Are most of the jobs going to be dishwashers and wait staff?

I just need more information on it. If someone were to ask me right now, would you voted for it, I’d have to say no, until I got more information.

What is your solution to improving Lewiston’s downtown housing stock, and why would it work?

I don’t know about the downtown housing stock, but I think we generally have more than enough housing for people. I do know there are a lot of vacant apartment buildings that have been foreclosed. Part of the problem is, can the city deal with this or is it more of a landlord-tenant issue?

I own an apartment building. I see some of the problems. The problem is, there is no accountability right now. These landlords are busting their humps to get housing to these people. Some are not doing the right things but I think most are. But when you have someone living in your house for six months and not paying rent at all, the bank still wants their mortgage. 

We just need people to be accountable and not be so against the landlords. 

Roger Roy, 55

72 Old Lisbon Road

Occupation: Home inspector, president and CEO of RPR Home Inspections Inc.

Education: Lewiston High School, 1974; some classes at Central Maine Community College.

Political experience: None

Community organizations: Member, Androscoggin Chamber of Commerce; member, Maine Indoor Air Quality Council.

What is broken in your city? What problem do you perceive, and how will you, as an elected leader, fix it?

One of the things I think is most broken —  and it’s not only this city but the whole country — is the welfare system sucking up too much tax dollars in any way you can think of — from welfare checks to the form extra police protection and extra crime. You see news articles all the time saying it doesn’t draw people in, but I’ve talked to numerous people and I know. They come here from Alabama and they come from the South. We’re known as an easy welfare state. They just come up here in droves and if it’s not from there it’s from abroad. So, our system just needs to be overhauled.

I’d like to see a regressive step system, so that you need to have a year of residency before you can collect anything. It should be just the head of household, and a maximum of five years. The first year you collect whatever the system sets. The next year it’s reduced by 20 percent, and third year it gets reduced. And by the fifth year, you start getting a warning that your check will be down to zero.

There’s no incentive for people to work when they can earn more than the minimum wage.

What is your opinion of the casino? Would you urge Maine voters to support it or not? And why?

I would urge voters to vote for it. The main reason I’m for it is that it’s private dollars. As long as there’s no tax dollars to support it, then why shouldn’t we do it?

I think it would help. I don’t think it would be an issue of crime. I used to go to Foxwoods once a year, and Foxwoods is very nice and business is booming. I don’t see why we can’t do that here. And I hope Oxford does the same thing.

What is your solution to improving Lewiston’s downtown housing stock, and why would it work?

Part of that problem again is the welfare system. It just draws a lot of people from abroad and a lot of the welfare recipients don’t have any pride and you go into a lot of apartment buildings and they’re trashed.

Not to say it’s all their fault. Some of it is the landlord’s problem. We have a lot of landlords that you can’t find. They’re listed under LLCs and some are just not responsible for their properties and you can’t find them. So there are a lot of buildings dilapidated and some of it has to be in the code enforcement and to make some of these people repair some of the buildings. 



Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.