David Backer said the most challenging part of his first term on the Cape Elizabeth Town Council was the budget.

Backer, 54, of Rugosa Way, is running for a second term. Currently the chairman of the council, he is one of four candidates for three, three-year seats. The others are Greg Altznauer, Sara Lennon and James Rowe.

Backer grew up in Indiana. He graduated from the University of Texas in Austin, and received a law degree from Indiana University in Bloomington. He moved to Cape Elizabeth nine years ago with his wife, Suzan, and their three children, Davis, 16, Grant, 15, and Noah, 12.

He said the spending cap passed by the council in 2004 was a good idea for the town. Mainers are tired of a tax-and-spend policy, he said.

Backer said he is against the Taxpayer Bill of Rights. He said he held to the pledge to cap spending when the state considered earlier tax caps. “For the last two years I’ve been encouraging restraint with the budget,” said Backer, “so we wouldn’t have TABOR-type bills.”

Backer said he is against the Fort Williams Park fee question on the ballot. The fee should be for everyone, not just non-residents. Backer said he felt the pay-and-display system encouraged drive-through visitors.

As far as the expired contract with Cape police, Backer said he hopes it is resolved soon. It is unfortunate it has taken so long to resolve, he said, of the contract that has been in dispute for over a year because of disagreements regarding retirement packages.

Backer said the town center is progressing as it should in its development, and he looks forward to projects next summer. He is hoping the building in front of the high school, currently vacant, will find a tenant.

Regionalization of services is an idea that should be pursued, said Backer. He said Cape just joined the Metro Regional Coalition, which is looking at collaborating on a possible criminal lab and maintenance facility for surrounding areas. As far as consolidating school administration or classes, Backer said it is worth looking at, but is a long way off for the area.

Backer said one of the biggest issues he sees for Cape Elizabeth’s future will be development. The town is always struggling to preserve its rural character, said Backer, but it will have to struggle with aggressive developers and rising property values.

“People should vote for me based on what they have seen me do or not do,” said Backer.

Cape Council: Backer eyes development as ongoing struggle


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