MONROE — Over 100 residents attended the annual town meeting and voiced their opinions on an article that would have required the Planning Board to start the process of developing a comprehensive plan, which was ultimately defeated by a vote of 68-44. Most of the other articles passed without much discussion.

The comprehensive plan article was brought by a resident to address the growing number of burrow pits, quarries, mines and other industrial activities that create noise, dust, odors and an unsightly presence. Several residents were present who work for or own companies engaged in those industries.

A comprehensive plan establishes goals and a direction residents want the town to move in regarding community development. Ordinances and development zones can be created based on the information in the comprehensive plan, but a town can also choose not to create any laws or regulations after adopting the document.

The argument between residents who supported the article and those opposed boiled over at times, with residents who opposed the article shouting that the proponents should move out of town if they did not like the town the way it was.

The town had a Comprehensive Planning Committee several years ago, according to Dave Doak, who chaired the committee. He said a plan was approved but never put into action. Selectman Jackie Robbins said she did not think the document was approved, and was therefore not in place at the time of the recent meeting.

Residents who supported the article thought that even if a plan was developed several years ago, there should be a new one in place that better reflects what residents currently support. They reminded those opposed that a comprehensive plan is not a legally binding document.

Some residents thought creation of a comprehensive plan would result in regulation of economic development in town. Many of them said they moved to Monroe because there are not many regulations. They thought state regulations addressed many of the concerns of supporters of a plan.

In other business, residents voted to revise the Shore Land Zoning Ordinance to bring it into compliance with state regulations. The change only affects development activities like logging, according to Planning Board member Curtis Marston. The town has not updated the ordinance since 1992 and the state has made several revisions to its statutes since then.

Voters approved a town budget of $700,199, a decrease from the total budget last year of $988,282. Of that amount, $684,545 is to be raised from taxes, a 2.2% decrease from $699,782 last year. The Town Warrant did not specify the amounts it anticipates receiving from the state through revenue sharing, road assistance and excise tax to offset the tax commitment.

Holly Emerson was reelected to a three-year term as selectman, and was also reelected to a three-year term as assessor. Elected to the Planning Board were Marston, Braden Gow, Steve Burciago and Nancy Durant Hanson for three-year terms and Paul Carrier and Troy Moody for two-year terms.

Doak was elected to a three-year term on the Recreation Committee term, Kassandra Hamilton to a two-year term on the Recreation Committee, and Cassandra Moody to a one-year term on the Recreation Committee.

There will be a special town meeting announced soon to address a revaluation article that was left out of the annual meeting’s agenda through a clerical error, Emerson said.