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Lincolnville to sell historic building, gain a new park on the bay

By Susan Mustapich | Jul 15, 2020
Photo by: Susan Mustapich The town of Lincolnville now owns a 4.34-acre park property on Penobscot Bay, following voter approval July 14 of the acquisition by land-swap.

LINCOLNVILLE — Residents voted to approve a $2 million town budget for 2020-21, acquire a new park on Penboscot Bay as part of a land swap, and sell the Lincolnville Improvement Building.

The election took place at the polls June 14, and by absentee ballot. A total of state 904 ballots were issued, according to Town Administrator David Kinney. Lincolnville has 2002 registered voters. Voter turnout was just over 45%. 578 of the 904 were absentee voters.

Due to the use of paper ballots, in place of the annual town meeting, many more people voted on the town budget and other local issues, than in any other year. Paper ballots were used due to Maine's COVID-19 rules, limiting gatherings to 50 people.

Selectmen, school board

Incumbent Selectman Josh Gerritsen was reelected to a three-year term with 742 votes. David Michael (Mike) Ray was elected to a three-year term on the Board of Selectmen with 627 votes.

Tracee O'Brien, 738, and John Williams, 646, were elected to three-year terms on the Lincolnville Central School Committee.

Lincolnville Improvement Association Building

Voters agreed to let the town sell the Lincolnville Improvement Association building by a vote of 683 to 165.

The building is owned by the town and leased to the Association. The Board of Selectmen put the decision to voters after an engineering study they commissioned found the 128-year-old building needed an estimated $700,000 in repairs and renovation, plus administrative costs and fees, to be brought up to safety and accessibility standards.

The building has long served as the meeting and gathering place of the Improvement Association and the home of the Lincolnville Historical Society museum.

Park property land swap

Voters decided to acquire a park property from Coastal Mountains Land Trust, through a land swap, with a vote of 770 in favor and 87 against. They also approved using $13,700 from the town's unassigned fund for maintenance and operation of the park through 2021.

The 4.34-acre property is located near the Northport-Lincolnville town line, and contains swing sets, roofed picnic table shelters with stone barbecue fireplaces, volleyball nets, horseshoe pits, seasonal water spigots and a roofed toilet facility.

The town is giving to Coastal Mountains approximately 68.8 acres on the Ducktrap River, for conservation, to protect the river corridor and habitat for a species of Atlantic Salmon. The public will continue to have recreational access to this land.

Neither one of the parcels can be developed for other uses.

Municipal budget

Voters approved the 2020-21 municipal budget, 767 to 84. Expenses total $2,146,092.

Also approved, 841 to 43, is the use of $1,244,300 in non-property tax revenues and the unassigned fund balance to lower the amount to be raised by property taxes.

The net amount to be raised in property taxes to run the town through the next fiscal year totals $901,792, a 9% decrease from the previous year.

Lincolnville Central School budget

Voters approved, 710 to 126, school operating expenditures for the 2020-21 school year totaling $3,629,586, a decrease of 3.16% from the prior year, as well as the amount of $3,304,575, to be raised in local property tax.

The amount to be raised in taxes is up by $101,310.00 from the prior year, due to a decrease in state funding.

 

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