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March 14. 2013 11:13AM

Auburn Police Commission survives vote

AUBURN - The Auburn Police Commission has survived the Auburn town vote, with a petition warrant to abolish it being rejected by 162 votes.

The petitioned warrant would have abolished the commission by rescinding the vote that created it. It failed 365 to 527.

Supporters of the warrant argued that the Police Commission produces unnecessary and unaccountable layer of bureaucracy. Supporters of the commission argued that the commission provides necessary separation of powers, disputing the petition advocate’s claims of waste.

All remaining warrants at the March 12 vote passed. As a result, Auburn taxpayers will see a tax rate on the town side of $4.39 per $1,000 of property value, or $1,097.50 on a home valued at $250,000. This is a 20-cent per $1,000 increase from last year.

In further good news for the commission, the collective bargaining agreement between the Auburn Police Union, Police Commission, and Board of Selectmen passed 550-335. The contract is the very first between the Auburn Police Union, which was formed in mid 2012, and the town. The one-year contract will provide for a $33,313 wage and benefit increase. Negotiations for the following year are scheduled to begin in July.

Also passing were a $34,675 mosquito control program by 605-285, a fire truck purchased through a lease agreement and paid for through surpluses by 678-211.

On the school side, the operating budget of $11,609,192 and a collective bargaining agreement passed 528-343 and 524-353 respectively.

James Headd will retain his seat on the Board of Selectmen, receiving 453 votes to challenger Audrey Trickett’s 417. In the School Board race, challenger Anite Gildea overtook incumbent Alan Villeneuve 269-257.

In all, 908 voters showed up for the March 12 election, a 24 percent turnout of Auburn’s 3,748 registered voters.


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