Five candidates are running for three two-year seats on the Old Orchard Beach Town Council.

Incumbent Town Councilors Kenneth Blow, Michael Tousignant and Shawn O’Neill are facing challenges from former Town Councilor Roxanne Frenette and community volunteer Israel Collins.

Blow, 56, is an operations manager at Casella Waste Systems. He has served on the Town Council for five years and has also served on the Planning Board.

Blow was raised in town and said he offers “experience and knowledge from five years of service to the council, showing I have the ability to compromise and the willingness to work hard for our community.”

Blow said the top three issues facing the council are following through on much-needed upgrades to the town’s Waste Water Treatment Plant, continuing to modernize the town’s roads, sidewalks and infrastructure, and making sure the town’s first responders have the resources required for them to respond and react as needed.

Collins, 40, is an educational psychologist. He has been involved in numerous civic groups and is the treasurer of OOB365, past president of the Rotary Club of Saco Bay Sunset and past vice president of the Libby library board of directors.

Collins said after many years of dedicated service in the Navy and the community, it’s time for him to step up and represent residents’ concerns on the municipal level.

Collins said, if elected, one of his top three priorities would be to work on reducing property taxes for the average family and fixed-income residents, as the tax burden is forcing families to leave Old Orchard Beach. His other top priorities are ensuring the town’s first responders have the equipment and training they need, and assuring that the aging population continues to have the means to access programs, opportunities and civic engagement.

Frenette, 57, served seven years on the Town Council and 10 years on the Biddeford, Saco and Old Orchard Beach Transportation Committee.

She said her experience makes her a good candidate for the council and if elected she would provide a female perspective.

Frenette said her priorities would include making sure Old Orchard Beach remains affordable by keeping the tax rate down. Her other priorities include maintaining the town’s general infrastructure, and coming up with an equitable sewer use fee system.

O’Neill did not respond to media requests. He has served several terms on the Town Council. He is a past chairman of the council and is currently the council’s vice chairman.

Tousignant, 56, is president of Loading Dock Equipment of New England Inc. A lifelong resident of Old Orchard Beach, he has served on the Town Council for eight years and also served on the Planning Board.

“I know the town and have what it will take to lead us into the future. In addition, having owned a small business for 24 years, I have the necessary skills and experience to serve as a member of the Town Council,” he said.

Tousignant said the top three areas the town needs to focus on are the school system, public safety and infrastructure such as sewer, wastewater and roads.

Liz Gotthelf can be contacted at 780-9015 or at:

[email protected]

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