BELGRADE — Peter Sargent is vying with incumbents for two seats on the Board of Selectpersons.

Sargent turned in his nomination papers on Feb. 1 along with incumbents Daniel Newman and Bruce Plourd.

Polls for the Friday, March 16, municipal election will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Belgrade Community Center for All Seasons. The annual town meeting is at 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 17, at the center.

Sargent, a retired state employee who served on the board in the mid 1990s, has been a member of the Comprehensive Planning Committee, the Long Range Planning Committee and the Appeals Board.

Newman, owner of Central Maine Fire Pros, served on the select board for five years. He is a member of the Belgrade Fire Department and also served on the Streetscape Committee and the Long Range Planning Committee.

Plourd, a Belgrade firefighter who works for Kevin Hawes Construction, served a three-year term on the select board and is a member of the Transfer Station Committee. He also served on committees that dealt with the purchase of two firetrucks and hiring a new recreation director.

If elected, Sargent said his focus will be on lowering taxes and reducing costs. He said the town needs to save more and spend less.

A way to save money would be to repair equipment and vehicles and buy used, he said. He said officials also should be more creative and think about outsourcing jobs to people in the private sector.

“Outsourcing town services would cost less and in the long run avoid having to hire a person and pay for health insurance and a retirement plan,” Sargent said. “That’s the federal government’s approach and I think it’s a good one that we should take a look at.”

Newman said he put his bid in for re-election because he enjoyed serving the community.

“Since I’ve been on the board, we’ve managed to build a salt and sand shed and we managed the last two years to keep the budget fairly close without any major increases,” Newman said.

He said the board wants to start a capital reserve account to save for a new town office.

Plourd said serving on the board has been a learning experience.

“I never knew how the tax money is divided and how much goes to the school system and how much is left for the town, which is fairly minimum,” Plourd said. “I was always the kind of person who complained, but didn’t understand how things work.”

Plourd said the next battle will be getting voter approval for a new town office.

“What we presently have is cramped. It’s way too small,” he said. “It’s not big enough to hold a lot of meetings. A lot of times it’s standing room only.”

Incumbent Kevin Hawes is uncontested in his bid for another one-year term as road commissioner.

Mechele Cooper — 621-5663

[email protected]


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