Here we are, another year, another tax increase bringing the mill rate in Readfield to almost 19, one of the highest around.

Regional School Unit 38 still won’t downsize teaching staff or close the almost empty Wayne school despite 12 years of declining enrollment.

On the municipal side, some groups of non-essentials ask for taxpayer dollars, refusing to raise any funds for their group. The Mill Stream Dam group, with the help of a generous local business owner, brought 95 townspeople together and raised as much money in one night as Readfield Trails is asking for, truly strengthening the community. There is no reason Trails can’t do the same and replace resentment for them with respect and support.

There are two vacancies on the Board of Selectmen. Two candidates running are campaigning on past experience. One was chairperson of the board and the other on the budget committee during the horrible failure of the public works department and other issues that started the rise in the mill rate and brought the most destructive environment and social division in town I have ever seen. It expanded until the conversation was started that led to a major shakeup in town government. We still don’t know how much all that cost taxpayers in dollars, way too much in attitudes and bitterness towards town government.

On the other hand, the two alternatives, Alan Curtis and Sandra Rourke, had the two greatest reasons to lower the mill rate and make town government operate responsibly: children and grandchildren living in Readfield that they want to stay here.

On June 14, vote down the school budget, all funding to non-essentials or departments not efficiently managed and vote for the two selectboard candidates that will responsibly represent everyone in town. We need to move forward, not backwards.

David Hepfner


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