This is in response to Larry Gilbert’s letter (Sept. 27). I served on the Auburn City Council back in 2008 when Gilbert’s consolidation group presented its report. I came to quick realization that it was an effort to eventually merge the two cities.

In reviewing the report, I saw that there was significant labor costs associated with bringing any two city departments together and very little efficiency or payoff for either city. Therefore, I saw fit to end the effort by voting to disband the Joint Services Commission. I joined three generations of councils that did not see any benefit to move the merger idea forward and save residents and taxpayers the headache of going through it.

Now it is 2017 and, once again, we will cross that bridge, this time with the vote of the people on Nov. 7. Once again, I see great cost in salaries that will need to be carried over, year after year. Once again, I see reductions in service.

But this time, Lewiston taxpayers will be able to experience a full-scale revaluation of property, mandated by state law on consolidations, resulting in the unintended consequence of higher taxes all at once. That tidbit was left out of the Charter Commission’s impact report. Also left out is the consultants’ estimate of $1.6 million in costs, which justifies our numbers.

They talk of fuzzy math, but the Coalition to Oppose Lewiston-Auburn Consolidation only used the numbers provided by JCC’s own reports. COLAC stands by our conclusions.

Ron Potvin, Lewiston

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