Missed Camden’s candidate forum? Tune in, listen and get to know who’s running
CAMDEN — Five of the six candidates running for a total of three open seats on Camden's Select Board attended the May 22 candidates forum, put on by the town and moderated by Deborah Dodge. Questions were posed to each candidate by Lynda Clancy of Penobscot Bay Pilot and Kim Lincoln of the Camden Herald, as well as from audience members.
The candidates vying for the two three-year terms, expiring June 2020, are:
• Robert Falciani
• Alison McKellar
• Christian Wincklhofer
• Don White (incumbent)
Candidates vying for the one-year term (to complete the term of Leonard Lookner, who passed away in February), expiring June 2018, are:
• Steve Beveridge
• Jenna Lookner
Due to an one-of-state travel snafu, Lookner was unable to attend the forum, but submitted a statement to be read on her behalf.
Questions posed by the media to the candidates included whether they would consider treating homes rented through AirB&B like licensed B&Bs, exposing them to business property taxes that contribute money to the town coffers, as well as whether they agreed with the Legislature's proposed bill imposing a penny sales tax on lodging and meals throughout town and then whether or not they felt that would be a suitable way for the town to fund the Snow Bowl.
The candidates were also asked about the organization of the planning office, including whether Camden needs a planner, an economic development director and/or a community development director.
During final town budget discussions, Select Board members John French, Jim Heard, Don White and Marc Ratner were split on whether to continue to fund the community development director position, which was also a topic of discussion and motions at last year's Town Meeting.
French and Heard wanted to either reduce the job to part-time, or cut it wholly to shave more money off the total budget, while White and Ratner wanted to leave the position as is and let the impending new town manager make the call on whether the position was necessary and the job’s responsibilities would include.
To be informed ahead of election day, Tuesday, June 13, listen and watch the forum by CLICKING HERE.