Citizens listen closely while Maude March makes a point during debate at Mount Desert's annual town meeting Tuesday night. PHOTO BY EARL BRECHLIN

Town meeting votes valid

MOUNT DESERT — All of the votes taken prior to the suspension of the town meeting here Tuesday night are valid, according to one of the town’s consulting attorneys.

That includes the passage of an ordinance allowing food trucks to operate at the Northeast Harbor Marina, as well as the approval of several land use ordinance amendments and a vote authorizing the town to issue bonds for infrastructure projects.

The only articles to be voted on when the town meeting resumes are those related to next year’s municipal and elementary school budgets.

The open town meeting was abruptly halted when former town treasurer and selectman Jean Bonville pointed out that votes on the budgets would be invalid because the town’s financial audit for the previous year had not been completed. The town charter stipulates that the audit report must be available to the public prior to the annual town meeting.

Town Manager Durlin Lunt said Friday that the auditor will present the audit report to the selectmen May 20.

He said it is the opinion of attorney Andy Hamilton of the firm Eaton Peabody that the votes already taken at town meeting are valid because they did not involving raising or spending taxpayer money.

“The [financial] audit would have no impact on zoning articles and ordinances and things like that,” Lunt said.

Town meeting is scheduled to resume on June 9 for consideration of school and municipal budget items. The fiscal year begins July 1.

Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]
Dick Broom

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