READFIELD — The secret-ballot process for all annual meeting articles will continue next year.

Voters approved 358-298 a proposal to continue to use the secret-ballot process for the 2016 Town Meeting.

Some 692 people weighed in on the town’s business in the Tuesday election, all of it by secret ballot. It was the first time that process was used.

The 57-article ballot was so long that chairs were set up at voting cubicles that stood on five long tables on the upper floor of the Town Office.

Town Clerk Robin Lint said 338 people voted by absentee ballot.

She characterized the turnout as “about average” for an election having only local races. The town has about 2,100 registered voters.


According to the machine count available shortly after the polls closed, Bruce Bourgoine, with 459 votes, and Christine Sammons, with 392 votes, won election to the two open seats on the Select Board.

Eugene “Gene” Carbona Jr., who championed the secret-ballot process, garnered 235 votes and James Marr, 206 votes.

“Bruce and I had hoped we would both get on, and we did,” said Sammons, who was present at the vote count. Bourgoine had sent a representative to get the results immediately.

Three items on the ballot were defeated, and they were the articles for which the Select Board recommended approval and the Budget Committee didn’t.

Voters rejected by 77 votes an article calling for the town to appropriate $21,400 for assessing and $21,746 for code enforcement, plumbing inspector and building inspector. The vote was 293-370. The Budget Committee had sought to put in an additional $7,000 in that general category, citing an increased demand for those services.

Voters also rejected by 102 votes a proposal to spend $7,200 for equipment and $28,000 for Maranacook Lake Dam. The vote was 275-377.


In the final item, voters rejected a proposal to appropriate funds to cover overdrafts from the “Unassigned Fund Balance.” The vote was 194-456.

Voters approved, 349-308, an appropriation of $250,183 from the unassigned fund balance to reduce the total tax commitment.

While the ballot showed the two boards disagreed, it was actually a misprint, town officials said. Townspeople were told at two public hearings prior to the vote that the boards actually agreed on the matter.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

Twitter: @betadams

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