With partial vote totals recorded, Gorham voters made clear Tuesday that town councilors should be forced to step down if they are convicted of certain crimes, including drunken driving, while in office.

But voters were split on whether they wanted to spend $5 million to expand their public safety building, with 2,196 opposed and 2,153 in favor after incomplete results were reported Tuesday night.

Complete results of the election were not available by press time.

Voters were asked whether they wanted to define a crime of moral turpitude – an undefined standard the town’s charter uses for kicking a town councilor out of office – as a Class A, B, C or D crime. Of the partial totals reported, 3,549 voters answered yes to that question and 917 said no.

The question has come up twice in the past two years, after two town councilors were charged with operating under the influence, a Class D misdemeanor.

The public safety project proposal is to renovate the current public safety building on Main Street into the fire department’s headquarters and to build a new 10,000-square-foot police station in front of it.

Town officials have said showers, sleeping areas, interview rooms, offices and storage space are all inadequate.

Also on the ballot Tuesday were four candidates competing for three seats on the Gorham School Committee.

The candidates were outgoing Town Councilor Suzanne Phillips, Forrest Genthner and current school board members Dennis Libby and Sara Nelson.

The incumbents were leading at press time, and Phillips led Genthner by 25 votes.

Phillips, 38, is a child care provider who is finishing her first term on the council. Genthner, 19, is a part-time church pianist and student at St. Joseph’s College. Nelson, 46, a stylist at boutique accessories company Stella & Dot, is finishing her first term on the School Committee. Libby, 47, a maintenance technician for Woodfords Family Services, has served on the board for nine years, four of them as the chairman.

For two seats on the Town Council, current Chairman Michael Phinney and retiring Police Chief Ronald Shepard ran uncontested.

Leslie Bridgers can be contacted at 791-6364 or at:

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