Vern Maxfield (center) listens to a member of the towns budget committee. Bethel Citizen photo by Samuel Wheeler

 

GREENWOOD —  After three rounds of voting, no select person was nominated at Saturday’s meeting. Current selectman Fred Henderson was challenged by Michele McDonnell and Norman Milliard. With three people running, in order to win the nomination, the winner needed to receive more than half of the total votes cast, according to the Maine Moderators Manual. Although Milliard had the most votes each round, he never eclipsed half of the total votes cast.

In the first round, Milliard had 26 and McDonnell and Henderson each had 18. In the second it was Milliard with 29, McDonnell 21, and Henderson 20 and in the third it was Milliard with 31, McDonnell with 22 and Henderson with 17.

Candidates had the option of withdrawing their candidacy, but none elected to do so.

A motion was made to cease the voting and to allow the selectmen to appoint someone to the position.

Milliard was not present at the meeting due to a family matter.

At their next meeting, selectmen will decide when to hold a special town meeting to elect a selectman for a three-year term. Town Manager Kim Sparks said the town plans to hold the meeting before July 1, which is when the new term would start.

The term will start on July 1 of this year. The town will also consider holding a “candidates night” where residents can come listen to each person running for selectboard.

Article 23, asking if the town will vote to “authorize within the municipality the operation of medical marijuana establishments, provided they operate in compliance with all applicable state and local requirements,” generated discussion among attendees, with people speaking for and against it.

“The marijuana today is much stronger than it used to be,” resident Harry Orcutt said. “Today it is the drug of choice that leads to other drug abuse.”

“I think the revenue would be beneficial to this area,” resident Janelle DeNormandie said “It will provide citizens in this area that have a medical need for it to get it more locally.”

“I’ve spent decades watching the effects of marijuana, I don’t even think it should be voted on,” resident Dwight Mills said.

“If they want to ban something, they should consider alcohol. Alcohol kills people, marijuana doesn’t,” resident Jim St. Germain said.

“We’re voting on if we want to get a little bit of that income brought into our town,” resident Dave Goodwin said. “This will help out local businesses, and I think this is a really good idea.”

The article passed with some opposition.

The towns Marijuana Committee plans to meet soon to review the state ordinance on marijuana. The committee plans to draft an ordinance similar to what the state has, according to Sparks.

About 75 people attended the meeting.

Woodstock Town Manager Vern Maxfield moderated the meeting.

Other business

Voters approved raising $60,500 for facility maintenance and repair. The original amount was $30,500, but Ken Cole made the motion to raise an additional $30,000. The $30,000 will be specifically used toward maintenance and repairs to both town fire departments. The $30,500 will go toward other town facilities.

The majority of residents approved raising $95,000 for the fire department budget. The budget decreased from $120,000, with the biggest reason being to make the funding “more in line” with other towns similar in size.

Citizens voted to raise and appropriate $89,300 for Capital Improvements to Howe Hill Road and other roads in the town. The original amount was $55,000, but Budget Committee Dennis Doyon made the motion to increase the amount by $34,300.


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