LEVERETT MITCHELL

LEVERETT MITCHELL

BATH

Three candidates have lined up to fill the one-year Ward 7 vacancy left by the passing of longtime City Councilor Ruthe Pagurko.

Pagurko, who had served on the council for seven years, passed away on Sept. 28.

Leverett “Tink” Mitchell, Larry Scott and Cal Stilphen have returned nomination papers for the vacancy.

Mitchell, the city’s former fire chief, was on the City Council from 2002 to 2005. He said Monday he missed serving on the council and considers a one-year vacancy a good means of stepping back into the role.

The major job in front of the council, Mitchell said, is attracting business.

LARRY SCOTT

LARRY SCOTT

“It has a ripple-down effect,” he said.

Mitchell favors seeking tax incentives for companies such as one that is building small boats in North Bath.

“We’re taxing businesses at one of the highest rates in the country,” he said. “Somewhere along the line we’ve got to make some changes.”

Mitchell, 64, was in the fire department for 27 years, the last four as chief.

Scott, 62, is a retired businessman. He and his wife, Joy, whom he says has a “love affair with Maine,” chose Bath as the place to retire.

CAL STILPHEN

CAL STILPHEN

He has been idle and just watching for long enough, Scott said. Following Pagurko’s passing, he said, neighbors convinced him to run.

“They urged me to get on the council as fis- cally conservative and open — to say what I mean,” Scott said.

The biggest concern he is hearing, Scott said, is the burden of property taxes.

“They say taxes are going up and it needs to be addressed,” he said. “Another few increases and they’re on the verge of selling or giving up their homes.”

Stilphen, a retired risk manager, had run against Pagurko last time, and had planned on seeking the seat again next year.

“I wish the circumstances were different,” he said.

Stilphen, 63, said his family has lived in Bath for generations and that he is proud of his city. He is member of the Planning Board and a trustee in the water district.

“It’s a good place to live and has a good educational system, and I want to help preserve that for the future,” he said.

In order to do that, Stilphen said, town officials should take steps to avoid the city going into debt.

“Make the city businessfriendly,” he said. “Provide resources for businesses to come into the city and flourish.”

In other contested races for City Council on Nov. 6, Kyle Rogers will defend his Ward 3 position against Carolyn Lockwood, while Fran Simmler challenges Bernard Wyman in Ward 4. Incumbent Ward 2 Councilor Sean Paulhus is not opposed on the ballot.

Polls at Bath Middle School will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Nov. 6.

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