Stephan Bunker Submitted photo

FARMINGTON – Stephan Bunker, local firefighter and long-time selectman for Farmington, has officially taken out papers as a legislative candidate for the Maine House District 113, encompassing Farmington and New Sharon.
“Since the tragedy of Sept. 16, I have seen the sheer goodness and compassion of citizens in my area. And the response with mutual aid by our brothers/sisters from New Sharon and other fire departments was speedy and effective. I owe the citizens of Farmington & New Sharon a debt of thanks and hope to repay it by representing them in Augusta, and bringing a common sense approach to state spending, controlling taxes and setting priorities to meet our needs here in rural Maine.
Sen. Russell Black states, “Steve Bunker is just the kind of conservative voice we need in Augusta. Having been a firefighter and selectman in Farmington and a state employee, he understands how to make government work for the people of our area. I support him in his run for the legislature and I hope you do as well.”
Bunker graduated from Farmington High School, class of 1967. He later enlisted in the US Army and served as a military police officer and K-9 trainer. He advanced to the rank of Sgt and completed a tour in So. Korea before returning home. He used the G.I. Bill to assist him in attending So. Me. Voc-Tech Institute and later transferred to the U. of Me. Portland-Gorham campus, attaining both Associate and BS degrees in law enforcement and criminal justice in 1974. He furthered his education at UMO, receiving an MEd in Adult Education.
While attending SMVTI, he joined the US Coast Guard Reserve as a Port Security Specialist, later receiving a direct commission and advanced to the rank of Lt. Commander, serving as a marine safety specialist, retiring after 23 years of service.
He has served in many public safety roles, beginning with the Farmington Police Department, cadre at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, Maine Sheriffs Association Exec. Director, corrections officer and dispatcher with the Franklin County Sheriffs Office, and as a home-school resource officer with the SAD 9 Supt. Office. He also trained and worked as an E.M.T. with then Keegan Ambulance Service, and later joined the Farmington Fire Department under Chief Robert McCleery. He is serving his 42nd year on the department and over 30 years as a state fire instructor.
During this time Bunker served 10 years on the Farmington Budget Committee, then was elected to the Board of Selectmen, a position he has held for over 25 years. He was elected by his peers to serve on the Maine Municipal Association, Executive Committee, representing over 400 cities and towns, and recently stepped down after 11 years, leaving as MMA President. Previously, he also served many years on the Franklin County Budget Committee.
Bunker, now retired from the state E911 Bureau, having been instrumental in implementing the emergency dialing system and establishing nation-leading training standards for 9-1-1 dispatchers. His focus now is serving on the fire department, board of selectmen, and as 1st Vice Commander of his local American Legion post. He is also a member of the ELKS, B.P.O.E 2430, the Wilton Fire & Game Club, and most recently, Rotary International.
Bunker hopes to focus issues of importance to farmers & foresters, small businesses, veterans’ services, outdoor/sportsmen, expanded education in the voc/tech trades, reducing energy costs, increasing revenue sharing & local school funding in order to reduce local property tax pressures, and moderating state spending. Also, on his radar are the issues of combating sexual assault, domestic violence & child abuse, and the equipping and training of first responders.
He also notes his real concerns over the clean energy proposal by CMP. While he and fellow selectmen were initially drawn to the potential of increased revenues that would assist in local property taxes, his view is changing, based on more recent research and data. As currently proposed, he feels that “this is a bad deal financially that offers little for rate-payers and has a long-term impact upon Maine’s pristine ecosystem.” He feels that such monumental decisions should rest in the hands of affected citizens and ratepayers, particularly those towns touched by the proposed corridor.
Bunker is asking his friends and supporters for $5 donations as part of a Clean Election candidate, rather than accepting funds from corporations or PACs. In this manner, he can qualify for supplemental clean election funds. Farmington and New Sharon registered voters can contribute by going to www.maine.gov/cleanelections and click on the “contribute” button. There is also will be a link on Steve Bunker’s candidate Facebook page, facebook.com/bunker4house. Steve can be reached at 207-592-1247 or by e-mail at [email protected]

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