Chebeague Island selectman resigns without explanation

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CHEBEAGUE ISLAND — Voters will elect someone to complete the rest of Selectman Mark Dyer’s term at a Nov. 19 special Town Meeting.

Dyer has served on the board since Chebeague Island became a town in 2007, and was chairman during part of that time. He was re-elected last and his term expires in 2013.

Town Administrator Eric Dyer, no relation to Mark, said the Board of Selectmen accepted Dyer’s resignation on Oct. 26. In a brief note to the board, Dyer said he has “enjoyed serving the people of Chebeague Island with you.”

He did not disclose a reason for his resignation and could not be reached for further comment.

Voters on Nov. 19 will also decide whether to institute secret ballot elections and adopt a town seal.

Selectman – including Dyer’s replacement – and School Committee members are now elected from the floor at Town Meeting. With secret balloting, those candidates would be elected at the polls the second Tuesday in June instead of during the open Town Meeting.

To be on the ballot, candidates would have to file nomination papers at least 45 days before Election Day. Nominations of write-in candidates could still be made from the floor at Town Meeting. Absentee ballots would be available 30 days before the election.

Eric Dyer said the proposed change was triggered by the question of how fair it is to have candidates nominated from the floor at Town Meeting.

“It doesn’t necessarily make for the best process,” the town administrator said. “I think people wanted the chance to know who is running, to talk to them, ask them questions. The nomination from the floor (doesn’t) necessarily allow that.”

Candidates who file nomination papers and get on the ballot would have the opportunity to introduce themselves and talk about their candidacies, while those nominated from the floor would not.

Another item on the special Town Meeting agenda, due to be finalized Nov. 9, is Chebeague’s adoption of an official town seal. The town has had an unofficial seal, designed by Martha Hamilton, since it seceded from Cumberland in 2007. The special Town Meeting vote would make that seal official.

Voters will also decide on a building codes ordinance, as well as dog control and firearms ordinances. Also up for consideration is a $25,000 contract between the town and Chebeague.net for long-term Internet services.

The Nov. 19 special Town Meeting will be held at the Island Hall at 9 a.m.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

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Chebeague Island voters will decide whether to make their unofficial seal, designed by Martha Hamilton, the official seal at a special Town Meeting Nov. 19.

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A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.