June 2019 local election results (China, Vassalboro, Fairfield, Benton)

by Mary Grow

CHINA

China voters rejected both spending requests on their June 11 local ballot. They re-approved the school budget initially approved at the April 6 town business meeting and voted to continue the school budget validation referendum for another three years.

Town Clerk Rebecca Hapgood reported the results, as follows:

  • The request to authorize selectmen to spend up to $150,000 to buy land on Lakeview Drive with frontage on China Lake, 114 in favor and 289 opposed.
  • The request to authorize selectmen to spend up to another $25,000 to continue planning for an emergency services building and a community center, 72 in favor and 332 opposed.
  • Re-approval of the 2019-2020 school budget, 261 in favor and 139 opposed.
  • Continuing the second vote on the school budget, 265 in favor and 129 opposed.

Hapgood said 406 ballots were cast.

VASSALBORO

Vassalboro’s local ballots included uncontested municipal elections and school budget questions. Town Clerk Cathy Coyne reported a total of 101 ballots cast.

Voters re-elected Selectman Robert Browne with 98 votes and school board members Jessica Clark and Kevin Levasseur with 81 and 79 votes respectively.

The school budget approved at the June 6 open part of the annual town meeting was re-approved by a vote of 87 to 14. Voters decided to continue the school budget validation referendum for another three years on a 63 to 37 vote.

FAIRFIELD

According to municipal clerk Christine Keller, 243 votes were cast at the June 11 referendum election.

MSAD #49 school budget validation referendum:

Yes: 61 – No: 182

MSAD #49 school budget process:

Yes: 158
No: 84
Blanks: 1

BENTON

The following are the results of the MSAD #49 budget validation referendum election:

Article 1: Yes: 38 – No: 70
Article 2: Yes: 71 – No: 38

Gladys Benner presented with Boston Post Cane in Fairfield

Ms. Gladys E. Benner, 97, recently received the Town of Fairfield’s Boston Cane for the oldest resident. (contributed photo)

The Town of Fairfield has presented its Boston Post Cane to Ms. Gladys E. Benner, who recently reached the age of 97 years. The Town of Fairfield continues the time-honored tradition of presenting the Boston Post Cane to its eldest permanent resident. The tradition of the Boston Post Cane dates to 1909 for the oldest living man, and in 1930 the tradition was expanded to include both men and women. The previous holder of the town’s Boston Post Cane was Ms. Vivian R. Field, who recently passed at the age of 99. State Senator Scott Cyrway, left, additionally bestowed legislative sentiments.

Mallory Beane receives a scholarship from Husson University

Husson University announced today that Fairfield, ME resident, Mallory Beane, will receive a $3000 Provost’s Leadership Scholarship for the 2018-2019 academic year.

Beane is a first-year student who is currently enrolled in Husson’s Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science/Doctor of Physical Therapy program. Merit scholarships at Husson University, like this one, are awarded on the basis of academic achievement.

Beane receives a scholarship from Husson University

Husson University announced today that Fairfield, ME resident, Mallory Beane, will receive a $3,000 Provost’s Leadership Scholarship for the 2018-2019 academic year.

Beane is a first-year student who is currently enrolled in Husson’s Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science/Doctor of Physical Therapy program.

Fairfield announces facade improvement plan

Downtown Fairfield. (Contributed photo)

The town of Fairfield has launched a new program to enhance the economic vitality and character of the town’s commercial districts. The Fairfield Façade Improvement and Marketing Assistance Program (FIMAP) allocates financial incentives for the renovation, restoration, and preservation of privately-owned business exteriors within the Town of Fairfield, as well as for marketing assistance to stimulate commerce.

The aesthetics of a community and its neighborhoods are a key factor in visitors’ decisions to live, work, and shop in a municipality. By providing grants or forgivable loans for up to 50 percent of the cost of façade improvement and marketing projects, the Town of Fair­field in­tends to leverage its historical and commercial assets.

“Place-based economics are a driving force behind vibrant municipalities in the 21st century,” states Garvan D. Donegan, director of planning and economic development at Central Maine Growth Council. “A high quality of place attracts investment, residents, and visitors, making FIMAP an important opportunity to realize the full potential of Fairfield’s commercial properties, in­cluding historical facilities in the down­town district.”

The competitive application process, reviewed by Fai­field’s Economic and Com­m­nity Develop­ment Advisory Commit­tee, offers two project tracks: façade improvement and marketing assistance. Within the façade improvement track, high-priority projects include, but are not limited to: preservation and restoration of original and/or historical facades; removal of “modern”, non-historic alterations or additions to original facades; repair or replacement of windows, doors, and trim; and the addition of signage or awnings. Within the marketing assistance track, eligible projects include, but are not limited to, branding, digital and/or print advertisement, and signage, and applicants must provide a long-term marketing strategy.

Successful proposals will generate significant economic and community development impact. “The Advisory Committee will prioritize projects which strongly contribute to the revitalization of our downtown district, to the restoration of our historic resources, and to job creation,” explains Michelle Flewelling, Fairfield Town Manager.

Eligible projects may apply for $3,000 to $25,000 in funding. The Façade Improvement and Marketing Assistance Program is funded by Fairfield Tax Increment Financing (TIF) revenues. Interested applicants may access a FIMAP application at here or by contacting Central Maine Growth Council.

The Economic and Community Development Advisory Committee is a “citizens” committee with open membership to all Fairfield residents, business owners, and educators who have a vested interest in community development. Meetings are open to the public, and the committee typically meets monthly at the Fairfield Community Center; go to Fairfield’s online calendar of events for a meeting schedule.

Lawrence boys headed to state championship game

In photo, front row, from left to right, Dylan Coombs, Seth Pellerin, Nick Robertson, Kober Nadeau, Gavin Herrin, Adam Duprey, Jackson Dudley. Back, Coach Elon Firmage, Coach Jon Doyen, Nik Pomerleau, Dylan Martin-Hachey, Jake Patterson, Mack Huard, Zach Nickerson, Coach Jason Pellerin and Coach Tim Robinson. (Photo by Mark Huard, owner of Central Maine Photography)

The Lawrence High School Bulldogs captured the Class A North boys basketball championship on Friday, February 22, with a 47-40 victory over the Skowhegan Indians. Lawrence improved its record to 13-8, and is headed to the Class A state championship game for the first time since 1999. The game will be held Friday, March 1, at the Augusta Civic Center at 7:45 p.m. Their opponent will be Class A South champion Greely High School.

In Class A North basketball final action, Lawrence’s Jacob Patterson (22), drives to the basket around Skowhegan defenders, Marcus Christopher, left, and Jimmy Reed. (Photo by Mark Huard, owner Central Maine Photography)

Lawrence’s Jackson Dudley has his eyes on the hoop ahead of teammate Adam Duprey (14) and Skowhegan’s Chase Carey. Lawrence advanced to the state championship game with a 47-40 victory. (Photo by Mark Huard, owner Central Maine Photography)

Erskine, Lawrence in 2019 tournament action

Lawrence High School’s Nick Robertson (10), drives to the basket past Erskine defenders, from left to right, Austin Dunn (12), Jacob Praul (40) and Gavin Blanchard (22). (Photo by Mark Huard, owner of Central Maine Photography)

Erskine Academy, of South China, and Lawrence High School, of Fairfield, squared off in the semi-final of the Eastern Maine Basketball Tournament, held at the Augusta Civic Center, on Saturday, February 16. Lawrence won the game, 53-38.

Lawrence’s senior captain Kobe Nadeau (11), tries to work his way around Erskine defender, senior captain Gavin Blanchard, during their semi-final contest. (Photos by Mark Huard, owner of Central Maine Photography)

Lawrence girls Box Out Cancer for Alfond Cancer Care Center

Brooke Lambert, Keegan Alley and Savannah Weston lead the Lawrence High School girls basketball team onto the court for their Box Out Cancer fundraiser. (Photo by Missy Brown, Central Maine Photography staff)

by Mark Huard

On January 29, Lawrence High School held its second annual Box out Cancer event. The money raised at this event is donated to the Alfond Cancer Care Center. This starts off with the Lawrence Girls Basketball Boosters selling pink ribbons that are hung on the gym walls the night of the event. On the night of the game, the cheerleaders and players from both Lawrence and Mt. Blue are given pink “Box out Cancer” shirts to be worn during warm-ups. These shirts were generously donated by Hometown Veterinary Care for the second year in a row.

Additionally, the boosters sell 50/50 tickets, pink ribbons, and T-shirts during the junior varsity game and the start of the varsity game. This helps to raise more money for this wonderful cause. Participants are very excited to take part in and event that will help so many. It’s a way for the community to give back and help people out at a very trying time in their lives.

The committee tries to think of ways to make this process fun. The Shopping Cart Frenzy is a fun-for-all game that is played at halftime of the varsity game. Fans can purchase a bag of three tennis balls for $5. These balls are numbered and the fans name is written on a chart next to their ball number. At halftime, a volunteer teacher throws on a helmet and cruises around the gym as fans try to throw the tennis balls into the shopping cart. If your number lands in the cart you win a prize. These prizes are also donated by local businesses. This year had donations came from Gene’s Market, Sonny’s Pizza, and Personali-tease, just to name a few. These donations helped to bring the community together to help fight one of life’s biggest battles for so many.

This year Lawrence girls basketball raised $1,300 for the Alfond Care Center. A member of the Care Center comes to the game and is presented with a check. Many people have been impacted by cancer and the havoc it creates in families. This event is meant to give our youth and their families hope. It creates a way to come together and fight this horrible disease together.

Members of the Lawrence High School, of Fairfield, and Mt. Blue High School, of Farmington, girls basketball teams pose for a photo prior to the game focusing on cancer awareness called Box Out Cancer, that took place at Lawrence High School. (Photo by Central Maine Photography staff)

Nine area students on University of New Hampshire’s dean’s list

The following students have been named to the dean’s list at the University of New Hampshire, in Durham, New Hampshire, for the fall 2018 semester.

Matthew Murray, of Augusta, with highest honors; Nicholas Carey, of Waterville, with high honors; Cody Short, of Fairfield, with high honors; Bradford Wilbur, of Fairfield, with honors; Carly LaRochelle, of Fairfield, with honors; Elijah Caret, of Oakland, with highest honors; Jessica Hosea, of Oakland, with highest honors; Hannah Duperry, of Oakland, with highest honors; and Adam Bovie, of Vassalboro, with highest honors.

Fairfield Cops Care For Kids Program experiences another great year

Fairfield Police Department personnel, front row, from left to right, Capt. Paul St.Amand, Officer Casey Dugas, Officer Shanna Blodgett, Dispatcher Jeanne Kempers, Officer Jordan Brooks and Officer Joseph Pelletier. Back, Officer Patrick Mank, Sgt. Matthew Bard, Officer Nemiah Nattress, Chief Thomas Gould, Officer Blake Wilder, Officer Timothy MacArthur and Sgt. Matthew Wilcox. Photo by Tawni Lively, Central Maine Photography staff

by Mark Huard

Once again Fairfield Police Officers carry out their annual Cops Care For Kids, where they bring wrapped presents in their cruisers wearing Santa hats. This is a tradition started by Kingston Paul in 2006. At its inception, Kingston purchased all of the gifts and wrapped them himself to ensure that more of the children in the community were able to have enjoyable Christmas memories with their families without worrying about financial stress. The program has grown over the years. This is a heartfelt occasion for all those involved and something that all of the law enforcement employees take pride. This year was another success, as the officers delivered presents to 226 kids in 108 Fairfield households on December 20. Officers had met earlier in the month and spent a long evening in the town office basement wrapping presents for the event.

The program has developed into an application process that is sent out through the school systems. It is no longer limited to struggling households and has been expanded to reach any Fairfield child. The officers focus on giving back to the community they love and spend so many hours protecting. It is now more about giving back to the community that they love and spend so much time protecting.

Community Outreach is something that the officers recognize as a critical part of their job. They want children and adults to be able to join together, and there is nothing like magic of the holiday season to inspire good will among everyone. It’s carrying on the heartfelt sentiment of their fellow officer, Kingston Paul, who has since passed away. Officer Paul donated $20,000 to the program, which has assisted in creating a stable program with longevity. Despite the large donation, officers still donate weekly to the cause out of their own pockets.

The Fairfield Police Department has a vision of eventually expanding the program in hopes of focusing on community togetherness. They hope to hold an event at the community center which will allow officers and families to have more direct interactions with each other for a longer period of time. These positive experiences are life changing for children in regards to having positive memories and positive interactions with law enforcement. The vision is one of holiday treats, officer elves, a holiday movie and whatever else will bring a smile to the face of children. The officers will not retire their sleighs though, as they will still do home deliveries to those not willing or able to attend the event.