Heartless decisions

A recent postcard from Jane Knapp’s campaign lists the Southern Maine Agency on Aging (SMAA) as an example of her “Community Involvement.”

I was intrigued. As the director of community relations at SMAA, I wanted to know exactly how Knapp had contributed to SMAA’s mission. Jane Knapp attended a 90-minute meeting at SMAA on July 13, 2012. She has volunteered to serve on SMAA’s non-governing Advisory Committee. Without any specifics, a blanket reference that she is “involved” somehow in assisting older adults or advocating for older adults is quite misleading.

From another campaign mailing, I noticed that she had her photo taken (at arm’s length, I might add) with some “older” folks. There was no caption with the photo to specify why she posed with these seniors, presumably from Gorham. Yet, no other reference was made in Knapp’s campaign materials about her work on behalf of the aging population of Maine.

In fact, Jane Knapp supported the governor’s proposal to kick 65,000 Maine seniors and disabled adults off the Medicare Savings Program (MSP) and to eliminate funding for Drugs for the Elderly (DEL). MSP pays Medicare premiums and co-pays for beneficiaries with low-incomes. Without MSP’s support these Mainers would be unable to pay for their health insurance, thereby reducing their access to health care. Without DEL, these same folks would be cut off from vital, potentially lifesaving medications. What would low-income people do when choosing between heat, food and health care?

I don’t want Jane Knapp to be making heartless decisions that will affect some of Maine’s most vulnerable people, such as her record shows. It is time that someone who really cares about Gorham and the rest of Maine’s people served in the Legislature. Please join me in supporting Andrew McLean for state representative, Gorham.

Eileen Whynot

Gorham

Read charter changes carefully

Beware people. The same people are after us again. I suggest people get a sample ballot from Westbrook City Hall and take a good look at, especially the Ccharter ballot. We are getting closer and closer to a dictator government. They seem to want to control our lives and pocketbooks more and more.

We are responsible for paying the bills of this city but have no say in how it is spent. First, it was the previous junior high school, which wasn’t worth repairing. Since the new school is now built, how much money has been spent on the old building so far? Now they want to move City Hall to the community center and sell the present one. Maybe it’s because they know it is convenient for people at the present location and they think if they move it to a location where there isn’t any bus service in the area, we will do everything by computer or mail and they won’t have to see us at City Hall.

The mayor will also have the power to hire and fire as she likes. Of course this does not include the city clerk’s position. What goes with the city clerk anyway? She seems to have a guaranteed position as long as she wants it. That’s why they want the job appointed instead of elected. I believe we have already voted on this issue in the past and wanted to leave it an elected position.

What has happened to the $4,000 we “gave” for the building at the corner of Main and Saco streets? Who is going to pay back the recent discovery of the financial error on the new school? Why weren’t the city and school departments on top of things?

Mayor Hilton didn’t understand why we’re not on the business-friendly list. So she got Gov. LePage to add the city on and he probably hasn’t even been to Westbrook since he got elected. He doesn’t know how many empty buildings we have in this city. They are so concerned about the “Gateway to the city,” which hasn’t changed much in years.

Also, they have made new ruling that businesses that can’t for one reason or another put landscaping around their business must pay a fee, which is nothing but a fine, for not obeying the city’s rules. Is this what they call “business friendly?”

How about the way Mr. William Baker got his job [assistant city administrator for business and community relations]? It was in the paper that there were 40 applicants who applied for this position. They just wanted Mr. Baker, so they hired him with a big raise in pay and benefits. I think Mr. Baker is a very a nice person and also very smart, but has he ever done this kind of work before, and why does he deserve all this increase just because the job includes being an assistant to the city administrator, who has had this job for years and has a secretary, the mayor and legal people to consult with?

Mayor Hilton doesn’t understand nor does the council understand why politics are so bad in this city. If they like you – great. But if they don’t, you don’t understand. If I was one of the people who made out an application for this job, I would really be insulted.

I just hope that everyone reads the charter changes carefully. I am 84 years old and have lived here all of my life and I have never seen such goings on as in the past few years. We would be a bankrupt city if we had to pay off all of our debts and this is a known fact. But they still keep borrowing and renewing bonds and trying to make us look good.

When are the people in this city going to realize it’s time for a change? I hope soon.

Leona Glidden

Westbrook

Can cut through bickering

For District 6’s State Senate election, I’m learning all I can.

I’ve decided I’m voting Jim Boyle. Here’s why.

I’ve learned Jim stands for what my friends and neighbors and I value: good jobs, affordable health care, and education investment for Maine’s children.

And I’ve learned Jim’s a small business owner. He works side- by-side with five employees. So he knows how to create good jobs, and he knows why good health care is key. Jim’s work is in scientific consulting, so he knows why we should invest in educating our kids, too.

I’ve met with Jim and believe that he can cut through partisan bickering, and will have Augusta “roll up its sleeves” to create pragmatic economic growth. I like that.

I also like that Jim’s experience is real. He’s worked with loggers, landowners, and mill operators. He’s worked with developers, land trusts, and utilities. All of this is real-world experience. Real Maine people, real Maine companies, and real Maine issues. That’s Jim Boyle.

That’s why Jim’s running. He knows how to grow good jobs in Maine, and why to invest in Maine kids, so they’re ready for those good jobs. So Jim’s running for State Senate in District 6 – to work hard and to help move Maine forward. That’s why I’m voting Jim Boyle. I hope you do, too.

Mayor Colleen Hilton

Westbrook


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