Sampson, Haley vie for Unity selectman seat

By Fran Gonzalez | Mar 17, 2020

Unity —

A contested race for a seat on the Board of Selectmen will come before voters Friday, March 27, with incumbent Penny Sampson facing off against Maureen Haley.

Sampson said she has been a selectman for the past six years, but still plans to campaign. One of the most important points for her, she said, is keeping taxes “as low as possible while still providing services.” The town, she said, needs to be run like a business.

Prior to being a selectman, Sampson served as the animal control officer in town for nine years. She was on the Budget Committee, the Town Office Committee, and the Appeals Board. Currently, she is the town's general assistance administrator as well as serving on the Cemetery Committee, the Waldo County Budget Committee, and the Waldo County Regional Communications Center Board.

She was on the road study group, which authored a review of all town roads. Three years ago, she said, the town took out a loan to put toward the roads project, resulting in roads that she said are now passable.

Every week Sampson writes the Unity News column for The Republican Journal to promote business and activities in town. She said she is looking forward to the election and that she is running a “clean” campaign.

Haley, a fifth-generation Unity native in the McCormick family, is a registered nurse working at Togus in the neurological clinic. She plans to retire in July. “I thought this day would never come,” she said. “It’s been my plan that when I retired, I would do more community service.”

Haley has also worked as the principal's secretary and registrar of students at the Mount View school for 12 years.

When asked why she would like to be a selectman, she said she felt the current selectmen are “lacking integrity” and somewhat “biased,” and added, “I don’t always think they are fair. … I think it is good to listen to people. I really think I could make a difference.

“It is important to find a middle ground,” she said. “It’s just a matter of compromise.”

Over a year ago, Haley said she reestablished the Unity Volunteer Fire Department Auxiliary that had been inactive for approximately 35 years.

“We currently have nine members and prepare food and hydration for the firefighters when they are on extended emergency calls,” she said. “We have done bake sales and an ATV Poker Run to raise funds for supplies and food. This has been a wonderful collaboration between the Auxiliary and the Fire Department.”

District 3 Waldo County Commissioner Amy Fowler, left, and Unity Selectman Penny Sampson hold up an antique map of Waldo County dated 1859. The map is on loan from the town of Unity to the County Commission.
Maureen Haley is running for the seat on the Board of Selectmen currently held by Penny Sampson. (Source: Maureen Haley)
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