Industry selectmen are planning a special town meeting to vote on a raise for the treasurer, after a resident petitioned the town to force the vote.
Dean Look petitioned the town to hold the meeting after he was denied in his initial request to give Town Clerk and Treasurer Angel Davis a raise at the annual Town Meeting in March. He’s proposed a $5,000 raise for Davis, who makes $13,500 annually.
First Selectman Lee Ireland said a date has not been set yet for the meeting, but he expects to hold it sometime in July before the town finalizes its tax commitment in August. The town meeting also will be used to vote on where to contract with for recycling, now that the town’s contractor, Sandy River Recycling Association, is going out of business.
Look had his neighbor, Percy Frazier, drive him around three times to knock on doors and collect signatures from residents.
In order to call for a special town meeting, there must be signatures equivalent to 10 percent of the votes cast in town in the last election for governor. There were 407 votes cast in the last election.
At March’s Town Meeting, Look proposed increasing the pay of the town’s administrators but was told that the meeting procedure rules didn’t allow for increasing the budget with the way the warrant articles were worded.
Last year, Tax Collector Martha Wing was paid $25,000 and the town clerk and treasurer, according to the annual report.
Ireland said the article suggests giving Davis a $5,000 raise, but is an open-ended proposal that would allow voters to approve any level of raise.
“And that’s dangerous for a municipality,” Ireland said. “The sky is the limit.”
He said that the town traditionally does not have open-ended warrant articles, because voters could approve a high, burdensome amount of money.
Look, who has lived in Industry for four years, said he researched the salaries paid to treasurers by calling other towns and looking at a report compiled by Maine Municipal Association. Look said that his mother was the clerk in Jonesboro for 24 years, and he said he thinks what Davis is paid now is not fair for the amount of work town administrators do.
“I don’t think people know what all goes into running a town office,” he said.
Kaitlin Schroeder — 861-9252 | firstname.lastname@example.org