The time to combine Lewiston and Auburn has come.

I have lived in Auburn for 29 years — longer than anywhere else. I have served on the Auburn School Committee and the Lewiston-Auburn Community Forest Board and am active in the community.

Auburn’s history includes several expansions: part of Poland in 1852, Danville in 1867 and part of Minot in 1873. Some say that Lewiston-Auburn would be too big. I disagree. I grew up in a town the same size as the combined Lewiston-Auburn. It was run efficiently by a town-meeting government.

The Joint Charter Commission report shows residents can act to take Lewiston-Auburn to the next level. Best practices from both sides of the river can be adopted that would reduce administration costs, eliminate duplication of effort and focus resources on schools, public services and infrastructure. The transition will be challenging, but it will ultimately succeed. I have seen mergers work in business.

Effective cooperation now requires both city councils to be on the same page. Collaboration depends on personalities and leadership, which will continue to be inconsistent. Let’s create the advantage of a common vision by establishing a single council.

In many ways, L-A is already one community. Let’s honor our proud histories, improve economic and political clout and communicate to the world that one L-A is positioned for the brightest future by acting on this unique opportunity.

Times are challenging. Business as usual is not our best option.

One L-A: It should be happening here.

David Griswold, Auburn

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