LAMOINE, Maine — A local man who is facing a criminal charge in Ellsworth for allegedly bouncing a check when he tried to pay for a $5,600 snowplow has been elected assessor.
Michael Jordan, 47, defeated incumbent Colene Sharkey in Lamoine’s municipal elections Tuesday, garnering 187 votes to her 147.
Jordan paid for the plow on Monday, 10 days after he was summoned by Ellsworth police on a felony charge of negotiating a worthless instrument. The initial charge was a felony because the amount of money involved was more than $1,000, but Hancock County District Attorney Michael Povich has said he intends to pursue only a misdemeanor charge against Jordan because the plow has since been paid for.
Jordan, who bought the plow from Morrison Chevrolet on Feb. 27, has said he did not think the check would bounce at the time he wrote it. He was summoned on the criminal charge after he was given five days to come up with the funds and then failed to do so, according to police.
According to Lamoine municipal officials, Sharkey has requested a recount in the assessor’s election but, as of Friday morning, had not paid the town the money required to help cover the recount costs. Town officials say she is required to pay the town $62.70, which is half of the expected expense of the recount, before they can proceed with revisiting the voting results.
The recount tentatively has been scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday, April 13, at the Lamoine town office, depending on whether Sharkey comes up with the funds, town officials said.
In other election results, incumbent Selectman Jo Cooper was re-elected to the board. Brett Jones failed in his re-election bid, defeated by Gary McFarland, who won 181 votes behind Cooper’s 203. Peter McDevitt fell short in the race for two available seats, getting 154 votes. Jones received 141 votes.
Roughly one-quarter of Lamoine’s 1,454 registered voters cast ballots in Tuesday’s municipal elections.
At the public open session of Lamoine’s town meeting Wednesday evening, voters approved an overall municipal budget of $650,846.79. This does not include education costs, which will be voted on at a later, undetermined date.
The 2009-10 municipal budget is approximately $27,000 less than the current year budget, but local property taxes are expected to increase because of a decrease in municipal revenues, down from $665,398 to $538,930. The local tax rate will not be known until the town’s education expenses are decided at the later Regional School Unit 24 budget vote.
The approved 2009-10 municipal budget includes $90,000 for a new brush truck for the Fire Department, according to Lamoine Town Clerk Jennifer Kovacs. She said 98 residents attended the open town meeting, which lasted 2¾ hours.