SOUTHWEST HARBOR — Selectmen last week agreed to put three new questions before residents on an online polling site but rejected posting questions about retail marijuana businesses in the town.
Board members discussed posting the questions on the Polco site during their Nov. 14 meeting. Board Chairman Lydia Goetze suggested the questions, as she had for the town’s previous, and first, attempt to poll townspeople on issues facing the town.
According to Goetze, between 30 and 40 people weighed in on questions posted last month, the first time the town utilized the site. Selectmen at their Sept. 26 meeting voted 4-1 to pay the annual $750 fee for using the site, which is designed to allow municipal officials to get input on questions of their choice.
With the new round of questions, residents are being asked how they prefer to get information about town affairs, what their favorite things are about Southwest Harbor and for their opinions on traffic and parking.
Goetze also proposed posting five questions to get reactions to different types of marijuana businesses but received a lukewarm reception.
Selectman George Jellison, who cast the opposing vote in September, said asking the questions was premature. The Maine Legislature is still grappling with how these types of businesses should be regulated and aren’t expected to finish that work before February.
“There’s no sense to vote on them now,” Jellison said of the proposed questions.
Referring to a recent vote in Tremont to adopt a ban on commercial marijuana businesses, Jellison said he felt that town “made a big mistake.” Southwest Harbor should consider the economic value of these types of businesses and not follow in Tremont’s footsteps.
“We spent time years ago to be a business-friendly town,” he said. “And this is not being business-friendly.”
No vote was taken on the marijuana questions; the board decided by consensus not to post them.
A link to the Polco site is posted on the town’s website.