BENTON — Three are vying for an open spot on the Board of Selectmen, and voters will have the chance to decide on Aug. 15 who gets to serve the seven months left in the term.

The seat was previously held by Dan Chamberlain, who resigned this summer. The three running to replace Chamberlain are Douglas Dixon, Dwight Lanning and George Moody.

Lanning, 70, previously served for nine years on the Board of Selectmen in the 1990s. During that time, he said he was proud that the selectmen were able to keep the tax rate reasonable, build the town’s salt shed, save interest by paying off the town’s sewer loan early, and take the town through some difficult times. He mentioned an instance when the state attempted to site a special waste facility in Benton, but after talking to landowners who would have been impacted by it, town officials were able to resist the state’s plan.

Lanning said he would be able to bring his knowledge and experience to the board and “hit the ground running,” would not have a learning curve and knows how to conduct town business.

“I’m certainly interested in maintaining the tax rate as low as possible and making sure the town runs efficiently,” Lanning said.

Lanning, who is the Benton representative for First Park and has been on the town’s Appeals Board, said he was inspired to run again after hearing that Chamberlain wouldn’t be finishing his term. The town can’t operate without all three selectmen, he said, so someone needs to fill the slot.

“I’ve always been involved with the town getting things done, so I thought I’d help them out and fill the gap,” he said.

Originally from Philadelphia, Lanning has lived in Benton since 1984 when he moved to Maine with the Navy, with which he spent a full career. He is retired now, but worked for years in computer programming and hardware repair.

Moody, 38, served in the military for a number of years, which is where his desire to serve comes from. He said as he served his country, he wants to serve his town now.

“I just want to serve and do my part, that’s pretty much it,” he said in answer to why he wants to run for the Board of Selectmen.

Moody said he wants to help bring in any new ventures that may help the town’s economy and to help build the town up to “make sure everyone is on a level playing field.” He mentioned the contract the town has for alewife harvesting. He said he wants to review it and learn more about, as it’s a big market for the town.

This is the first time Moody has run for office, and he said it would be a nice learning experience. A clinical social worker, Moody is originally from Chelsea and moved to Benton where he built a house with his wife.

“I really like it,” he said of Benton. “It’s a small town, a community, and a single person can do a lot in a smaller town like this.”

Moody said he’d like to see taxes lowered and alleviate the tax burden on the town. He also mentioned that he would fight to ensure athletics stay in the schools, as cutting certain sports was discussed during school budget talks.

“I want to give back to the community,” Moody said.

Dixon did not return calls for comment Friday, and the Benton Town Office staff did not know how to reach him.

Residents can vote from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Aug. 15 at the Town Office on 1279 Clinton Ave. Absentee ballots are due back by 6 p.m. on Aug. 15. The seat is only for seven months. Residents will vote for a full-term selectman at the annual Town Meeting in March.

Colin Ellis — 861-9253

[email protected]

Twitter: @colinoellis