May 24, 2018
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Two council seats, one SAD 63 post up for grabs in Holden

By Nok-Noi Ricker, BDN Staff

HOLDEN, Maine — In local elections today, three people are running for two open Town Council seats, but no one is officially running for the SAD 63 post now held by Sylvia Ellis.

Incumbents John Bryant, the council’s chairman, and Paul Amoroso are vying along with Ryan Warner, an emergency medical technician who works for the town’s Fire Department, for the two council seats.

Residents also will vote today on the school budget. The annual town meeting is Wednesday.

“If there is no write-ins for Sylvia’s post, and I think there has to be minimum of 10,” filling the seat will fall onto the shoulders of the Town Council, Councilor Ralph McLeod said Monday, explaining that the council would appoint “someone to the school board for one year.”

At the annual town meeting, residents will consider the budget, and two ordinances dealing with new wind turbine and open space rules, Town Manager John Butts said last week.

“The town’s budget is $2,121,686,” he said. “That’s a 6.59 percent reduction.”

The Penobscot County tax assessment increased to $293,867, which is about $6,000 more than this year’s amount, and the SAD 63 budget amount for the coming year is $2,275,777, which is about $101,550 more than last year, he said.

“Because of less revenue, the school’s loss in revenues and the town’s losing revenues from the state,” the result will mean a possible property tax increase, Butts said.

That will “depend on how much money the council wants to take out of the undesignated fund balance to reduce the tax rate,” he said.

That decision will be made later this month or at the first meeting in July, the town manager said.

The new wind energy facility ordinance and the open space rules are available at the town office, he said.

The proposed 36-page wind ordinance “is a proactive ordinance to create rules and regs for items [such as] high limits,” Butts said. “We haven’t had any response at all” concerning the proposed ordinance.

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