Jan. 11, 1984

Over the past five years, ex-mayor William B. O’Gara and some

aldermen drew their city pay six months or a year in advance,

Westbrook mayor Philip Spiller said Monday. Democratic aldermen refused immediate action, however, on Spiller’s request that the City Council put an end to the practice. In a 4-3 party-line vote, they sent to the Finance Committee Spiller’s proposed order for payment “on a quarterly basis.” He asked aldermen, particularly, to “refrain from drawing pay into another fiscal year, the budget for which hasn’t been passed.” “No other institution in the world pays in advance,” asserted Alderman-at-large Henry Sanders. “It’s grossly unfair to the people who collect wages weekly or monthly, or quarterly. What if someone got sick and had to resign? I think it’s a very poor example for the city employees.”

Marine Cpl. Mark Pray, a Westbrook man serving on the aircraft

carrier USS Guam off Lebanon, was chosen to present Loretta Lynn with a custom-tailored flight suit when she gave a shipboard show in December. Mark, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Herbert Pray, Constitution Drive, was recently promoted to corporal. He has been in the service two years, in the air wing of the Marine Corps, and has been on the Guam for three months.

When Gorham High School shuts down because of a winter storm, should coaches be able to call teams in for practice just the same? The School Committee will take a look at that problem. Committee member David Morrill expressed concern in the committee’s most recent meeting about parents and students who travel in a storm for high school practices. At the junior high school level, practices are canceled on storm

days, but at the high school, coaches now have discretion whether to call a practice or not.

Gorham police notes: Bradford Ray said a female dog entered his Queen Street barn and injured a sheep. The dog’s owner will be issued a summons. Paul Peters said someone stole oil from a tank on his property, but police determined there was a hole in the tank. Thomas Farrington drove off the Flaggy Meadow Road when he sneezed, hitting a tree and doing $1,000 of damage. Dennis Gillis’ vehicle hit a deer on the New Portland Road; he was allowed to keep it. The shift lever of the car of Janet Hall dropped into reverse while she was not in the car. She tried to jump in but it was too late, and the car rolled down her driveway, hitting a parked car and causing $1,350 in damage.

Jan. 12, 1994

Accepting the rulings of City Solicitor Michael Cooper, Westbrook Aldermen voted 6-1 Monday to set the election of Westbrook’s mayor for June 14, the day of Maine’s primary elections. The date will leave City Council President Kenneth Lefebvre as acting mayor for five and a half months and through most of the work on the 1994-95 city and school budgets. Cooper said the city had to pick a date that allows at least 90 days for someone who wants to run as an independent to resign from a party before the filing deadline. Lefebvre, who supported that view, said he would welcome even 20 independents in the race along with Democratic and Republican nominees. But Alfred E. Porell, who was the independent candidate for mayor Nov. 2, said the date was picked to hurt independents, since Maine’s primary elections on that day will bring mostly party members out to vote.

Gorham is one of three communities in the United States

participating in a new program that hopes to change the present educational system. Two years ago Gorham was selected from more than 200 school districts to help implement educational reforms. ATLAS (for “Authentic Teaching, Learning and Assessment for all Students”) is a partnership among Gorham, four education think tanks and the school systems of Prince George’s County, Md., and Norfolk, Va. The program is funded by private donations, mostly corporate grants. Some funding will come from TV Guide publisher Walter Annenberg’s recent $500 million contribution to educational foundations. Even though financial and professional help comes from sources outside of Gorham, said School Superintendent Timothy McCormack, “control of our schools remains in the hands of the community and the School Committee.”

The Westbrook City Council gave first-reading approval Monday to a five-year lease of the Forest Street School by the Maine State Ballet at $650 a month. The school has been vacant more than a year. City Solicitor Michael Cooper said the ballet’s present headquarters at 17 Bishop St., Portland, “is being taken over by someone else” and the ballet is interested in buying the school. The ballet will maintain the property. Alderman Lionel Dumond asked if there would be a payment in lieu of taxes. Cooper said he was looking into that. The vote to approve the lease was 6-1.

(Fitch Street, BW, 2 cars on right)(Fitch Street, color, blocked by bushes)

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