Michael Shea, 34, is running for Scarborough Town Council to help bring more business to Scarborough.

Shea, who opened Chicago Dogs on Route 1 in 2004, believes that Scarborough is too hard on businesses.

“I decided to run because when I opened by business, there were a lot of issues with the planning department and code enforcement,” said Shea. Since then, he added, he’s heard from many other local business owners who feel the town is not very business friendly.

For example, said Shea, he doesn’t think it’s fair that some businesses are grandfathered and allowed to have signs outside of the current standards. Every business should be held to the same rules, said Shea.

“I have a strong business background so I thought I’d try to get on the council,” said Shea. Before he started Chicago Dogs in Scarborough, Shea was a business development manager for Tropicana Gatorade, a division of Pepsi.

He grew up in Andover, Mass., and graduated from Andover High School in 1990. He earned an associates degree in culinary arts and a bachelors degree in business management from Johnson and Wales University. Seven years ago he moved to Scarborough and now lives with his 3-year-old daughter.

“I love Scarborough,” said Shea. “Everything for me is in Scarborough. My home is here, my business is here and my daughter is here.”

Though he is a supporter of the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights and believes taxes are much too high in Scarborough, he would like to see a senior center built if there is a strong enough desire among seniors.

“If that’s what seniors want, then we should give it to them,” said Shea. However, he feels the town needs do a better job of asking seniors what it is they really want before building a center.

As for the schools, he is not in favor of the current referendums.

“School spending is out of control,” said Shea, who added that while he agrees that the need is there for school renovations, the price is much too high.

“I think the taxes are ridiculous,” said Shea. “With things like the schools they will just go up and up, especially if we continue to spend frivolously.”

Along with bringing more business to town and making sure the Haigis Parkway is developed, he hopes to bring more organization to Scarborough’s government. Right now, said Shea, it seems like the different departments are not working together.

The answer, said Shea, is to model government after a large business, something he has a strong background in.

“It’s almost like a complete realignment,” said Shea. “It’s not going to happen in the three years I’m there, but we can get the ball rolling. The comprehensive plan is great, but we have different departments jumping all over the place.”

Scarborough, said Shea, is a great place to live that could be much better.

“We have the potential to live in a perfect town,” said Shea. “A lot of people who run for office love politics and the limelight,” he added. “All I care about is the bottom line. How are my taxes being spent.”

Michael Shea

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