Wells residents mark down their votes in voting booths at the Wells Junior High School gymnasium on Tuesday afternoon. The town ballot carried significant questions this year, such as a multimillion dollar bond question over the creation of new public safety complexes. RYDER SCHUMACHER/Journal Tribune

Wells residents mark down their votes in voting booths at the Wells Junior High School gymnasium on Tuesday afternoon. The town ballot carried significant questions this year, such as a multimillion dollar bond question over the creation of new public safety complexes. RYDER SCHUMACHER/Journal Tribune

WELLS — Residents of Wells have placed their votes on the town meeting ballot and the numbers are in. Results for some of the major questions on the ballot include:

• New public safety complex: In what was considered by some to be the biggest question on the ballot, Wells voters have approved a $14.25 million bond that will allow the construction of a new fire substation on Route 109 and a new fire and public safety building on U.S. Route 1 in the location of the current public safety complex. The vote was 1,176-580.

• Wells Library expansion: An expansion of the Wells Public Library was also approved on Tuesday. A donor-funded, $1 million addition will add one story to the southern side of the library.

• Marijuana questions: Residents have voted, 1,383-583, in favor of implementing a ban on retail marijuana and the establishment of marijuana social clubs in Wells.

Addtionally, residents decided, 1,391-519, medical marijuana cultivation should be prohibited from all town zones — except the light industrial district.

• Town selectmen: Selectman Tim Roche was reelected to serve an additional three years on the Wells Board of Selectmen, defeating his opponent John Macleod, 1,034-695.

• Open space land: Wells residents were asked to approve the purchase of an area of open space land known as the Getchell Parcell off of Bragdon Road, and have done so by a vote of 1,438-473.

According to the Wells Conservation Commission, the Getchell Parcell contains highly diverse plant life and an abundance of wildlife, including deer and moose, fishercat and coyote, songbirds and butterflies, as well as threatened species like the Spotted Turtle, Blandings Turtle, New England Cottontail, and the Black Racer Snake.

• State bond: Voters also approved, 1,214-676, a state bond worth $50 million designated to improve infrastructure, development and commercialization in the state as well as promote economic growth and job creation by investing in small businesses.

• New dispatcher:  Residents decided to vote in favor of adding another public safety dispatch position to cover both Wells and Ogunquit dispatch calls, 1,379-528. Wells and Ogunquit currently share dispatching services and the number of calls, according to Wells Police Chief Jo-Ann Putnam, have increased significantly to the point where another position was needed.

• School budget: The Wells-Ogunquit Community School District school budget has passed overwhelmingly by a vote of 1,510-367. The $25.7 million school budget will address several capital improvement items, such as beautifying the front courtyard of the elementary school where pavement has eroded, mitigating drainage issues at the junior high in the school’s back parking lot where kids often play.

In the new budget, $3.476 million will be designated toward health insurance, while $13.729 million will be allocated toward salaries.

The proposed school budget will decrease annual tax rates for Ogunquit homes priced at $300,000 or more by $3. Homes of $300,000 in Wells would see an increase of $45.

 — Staff Writer Ryder Schumacher can be reached at 282-1535, or via email at [email protected] 


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