The ferry terminal in Bar Harbor. ISLANDER FILE PHOTO

Port authority bill supported

AUGUSTA — A bill allowing a Bar Harbor port authority proposal to be submitted to the voters of the town was approved by a legislative panel Tuesday.

In a work session, the Legislature’s Committee on Transportation voted 10-2 to recommend that the bill “ought to pass.”

A port authority is a legal entity that could be created in the future with the ability to issue bonds to finance purchase or development of the ferry terminal property.

Under the language of LD 1400, the port authority would have a five-person governing board. Three members would be elected by the voters of the town, and two would be appointed by the Town Council.

Bylaws laying out the specifics of port authority operations would be drafted ahead of a vote on its creation by local residents.

Bar Harbor Town Manager Cornell Knight was on hand to answer questions from the committee. He said the reason for the bill was to keep the option open to the town.

Only one amendment was requested to the bill. All mentions of the “First Regular Session of the 128th Legislature” were changed to the “Second” because the bill was tabled from last year, the first regular session.

The bill progresses to the full Legislature for a vote.

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