Around the Region

New board member discusses impact of district and E/W highway

By Bill Pearson
Staff Writer

    PARKMAN — It didn’t take the town’s newest selectman long to become acquainted with his recently elected municipal position. As the select board began discussing town business on March 28, the municipal building’s security alarmed was set off which emanated a loud, piercing sound that town officials deal with each time it’s accidentally activated.

ne-newselectman-dc-po-14Observer photo/Bill Pearson

    NEW SELECTMAN — Selectman Dennis Brawn, Jr., right, discusses the ramifications of how Governor Paul LePage’s proposed biennial budget will impact SAD 4 municipalities on March 28 as board chairperson Pat Johnson, left, looks on. This was Brawn’s first meeting as selectman. He was elected at the town meeting.

    As a selectman, it won’t be long before he receives training in disarming the municipal building’s security alarm system. In the meantime, he has become involved in two issues which will have a profound impact on Parkman residents. Four days after being elected selectman, Brawn represented the town during a SAD 4 budget informational meeting in Guilford.
    Brawn heard from SAD 4 Superintendent Paul Stearns and Guilford Town Manager Tom Goulette explain how Governor Paul LePage’s proposed $6.2 billion biennial budget would impact SAD 4 local property taxpayers.
    Before entering office, Brawn had also received information from a Cianbro employee about the company’s proposed route for the East –West Highway. Brawn’s friend indicated that the final route hasn’t been finalized, but  project officials believed there was a high probability it would pass through some place within the town.
    Brawn later spoke to Cianbro project manager Darryl Brown who indicated he was interested in discussing the highway project with town officials in the future. Brawn indicated the highway project had both good and bad points and thought it would be beneficial to hear from Cianbro officials about the highway proposal.
    “They don’t know the exact route, but it seems likely that some part of it will go through Parkman. I talked to Brown about it for awhile. He took down some notes about road locations in town.” Brawn said.
    The selectmen didn’t make a decision on whether to offer Brown an invitation to speak about the highway project. The newly constituted board which includes board chairman Pat Johnson and Trina Gray along with the newcomer Brawn spent most of the time discussing how the state budget may impact the local property taxpayers.
    During the SAD 4 information hearing, local legislators indicated the biennial budget wouldn’t be finalized until sometime in July. The selectmen indicated the late notice on the state budget would likely result in two sets of property tax bills being sent out. The board expects to send out one bill based on this year’s local share educational funding. Town officials expect to send out a supplemental bill later in the summer  once the town’s local share is determined.
    “It’s a real mess with the state budget,” Brawn said. “It’s a pretty scary time and it looks like local taxpayers are going to be paying a lot more.”
    This is Brawn’s first time serving as an elected municipal official. He believed as a local businessman now was right time for him to become involved in town matters.
    “Just attending the SAD 4 informational meeting it really reinforces what a troubling economic time we live in,” Brawn said. “I thought it was time for me to run for selectman. I think it’s important to have the right people on the board to make sure our money is spent properly.”
    Brawn has owned Prouty Auto Body in Dover-Foxcroft for 15 years. He grew up in Guilford and attended Piscataquis Community High School. He also graduated from Northern Maine Vocational Technical Institute.
    In other business during the board meeting, the selectmen unanimously gave their approval to allow Martin Woodward to hold a horse shoe tournament this summer. Woodward wants to raise money for a PCHS scholarship fund in memory of his son, Marty, Jr. Town officials expect the tournament to be held near the salt and sand shed. A previous horse shoe tournament was held there during a Parkman Days event.

Get the Rest of the Story

Thank you for reading your4 free articles this month. To continue reading, and support local, rural journalism, please subscribe.