Wiscasset selectmen

Wiscasset sets referendum date

Posted:  Wednesday, February 28, 2018 - 7:45am

Wiscasset selectmen on Feb. 27 voted on language for a referendum on whether or not to continue the town’s lawsuit against Maine Department of Transportation. The board set the referendum for April 17. A public hearing will be held at the April 3 selectmen’s meeting.

The question reads, “Do you wish to continue with the lawsuit filed by the Town of Wiscasset against the Maine Department of Transportation regarding the Wiscasset Downtown Project?” A yes vote would continue the lawsuit; a no vote would stop it.

Wording that would have explained that additional funding would be required to continue the lawsuit was stricken when Chair Judy Colby moved that the informational note be removed. 

Selectman Katharine Martin-Savage held out for adding an article to accept funding from the Doerings and other possible donors to pay for the lawsuit.

Audience members  raised questions about the project and the referendum question. Bill Sutter asked, “Why are we even considering withdrawing from this challenge to our town ordinances?”

Susan Blagden asked how the lawyers made deals with MDOT lawyers to table MDOT’s appeal to the town to avoid complying with the Historic Preservation Commission’s certificate of appropriateness. “I was surprised that the town’s attorneys actually agreed to waive the time requirements for our Board of Appeals,” she said. “Now the appeal has also been made in Superior Court. I don’t know if there will even be anything we can do.”

The language was approved 4-1 , with Martin-Savage opposed.