Did Auburn Councilor Bob Stone and I attend the same Charter Commission public meeting on Jan. 25? Questions he posed as unanswered (letter, Feb. 9) were answered by Commission Chairman Gene Geiger and consultant Joe Stefko of CGR.

Stone alleged there would be heavier representation on the new city council by people who live in the area (formerly Lewiston). Geiger explained there would be two wards having residents from both sides of the river and one entirely on the west side of the river. It is conceivable that the council could have seven members from the territory (formerly Auburn).

We should be one city pulling together, not apart.

Stone stated there was no explanation about how the pre-merger debt would be paid. Stefko explained that state law requires that pre-merger debt must be paid by the residents of the city that created it. Stefko detailed the apportionment.

Stone stated he did not know what the combined city charter would look like. Chip Morrison gave a summary, stated that the entire proposed charter was available on the Commission’s website and draft copies were available at the meeting.

Stone noted that he was not sure the taxpayers would save any money. Both the consultant and Geiger reported a minimum savings of $2.3 million annually.

Stone said that the Commission had not chosen a name for the consolidated community. Geiger was very clear that the Commission wants to engage local citizens in that process.

The Commission has done a great job. Let’s please read the reports.

Donna Steckino, Auburn

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