Auburn charter commission candidates

On June 10, Auburn voters will choose three representatives to sit on the charter commission:

Voters will go to the polls June 10 to pick three candidates from each city to sit on the commission. They will begin drafting a plan to make one larger city out of two medium-sized ones.

The commission will write a new charter as well as a plan for all the other details, such as what the city will be called, where its offices will be and how it will be divided up politically. Most importantly, they’ll decide how debt, city assets and services should be parsed up and paid off.

The commission has no deadline, no budget and no real authority beyond drafting the document, according to the state statute governing consolidating cities and towns.

When they finish, voters will have their say. A majority in both cities must approve the charter independently. If either city says no, the matter ends until residents bring it up again.

Twelve candidates qualified for spots on the June 10 ballot, six from each city.

The Sun Journal asked all 12 to answer questions about themselves and about combining the cities. Excerpts from their responses are being published — Auburn’s on Monday and Lewiston’s on Tuesday.

Auburn candidates Alfreda Fournier, Charles Morrison, Holly Lasagna, John Spruill Jr. and Michael Beaulieu responded to the questions. Verne Paradie Jr. declined to participate.

The five who provided answers all agreed that Lewiston and Auburn could benefit fiscally and socially by becoming one city. For most, evidence that there would be no financial benefits would convince them to oppose consolidation.

The full profiles for all 12 candidates are available at The Sun Journal has also combined the profiles, plus polling place information in a PDF e-book — which is available there.

The candidates have also been invited to a May 27 forum to discuss their opinions about consolidating, their vision for how a new city could work and what they expect to be included in the discussion.

The forum is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. in Callahan Hall in the Lewiston Public Library.

The Sun Journal is hoping to collect as many questions as possible for the candidates beforehand. Email them to staylor@ before May 26 to have them included.

2014 Guide to the Twin Cities Charter Commission ballot

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