Westport Island town meeting July 18 to have two, maybe three sites

Elections July 14
Tue, 07/07/2020 - 8:45am

Masks are recommended at Westport Island’s polls July 14 and the open town meeting July 18, but are not required due to the Constitutional right to vote, town officials said in selectmen’s UberConference call Monday night. Deputy Clerk and Deputy Registrar Gaye Wagner said the town got the $4,670 it sought in Keep Maine Healthy funds to help with public education on COVID-19 and to rent audio-visual equipment to stream the town meeting inside the old town hall and adjacent Westport Community Church, and possibly on the green between them.

“Both facilities will be tied by streaming audio-visual so that everybody in either location can see everybody else or see the moderator, and he can interact with everybody,” Wagner said. She said it was not determined yet if the green would be used.

Third Selectman Ross Norton is unopposed on the Tuesday, July 14 ballot for another three-year term; and no one is on the ballot for a Sheepscot Valley Regional School Unit 12 three-year term. Susan Stires did not seek to stay on the district board. Voters will consider SVRSU’s $23.7 million budget proposal and $90,048 for adult education. Polls are open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the old town hall.               

Then voters gather at the two, possibly three town meeting sites at 9 a.m. Saturday, July 18. A draft town meeting warrant officials provided included a proposed generator for the town office with $6,982 in grant funds from the 2017 windstorm and $2,616 from the town office capital equipment reserve; a 1.75% cost of living raise for town officers; and $20,000 “for expenses related to expanding broadband internet access to all of Westport Island, including consultant fees and other costs ... of applying for state or federal grants.”

Also Monday, the board kept Richardson as chair; thanked Cheryl Anderson and Ken Shepherd for building and donating a drop box for the town office; and went with the state’s price of $54.50 a ton for salt. The town has been paying Harcros $77 a ton, Richardson said. The move will save about $2,700, he said.

Westport Island’s “COVID-19 Election Day Protocol” selectmen approved Monday: