Voters to decide on Cumberland County Charter in November

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PORTLAND — Cumberland County has finalized its proposed Charter and will send the document to voters for approval Nov. 2.

For approximately the past 250 years, the county has operated without a Charter, instead following rules set by the state Legislature. But in November 2008, county voters elected a Charter Commission to create the county’s own operational guidelines.

The proposed Charter will not dramatically alter the way county government is run. But there are several changes.

If the charter is accepted by voters, the traditionally elected position of treasurer would be eliminated. The county-hired finance director – who already oversees nearly all the county’s finances – would take over the treasurer’s duty of signing checks.

The register of deeds position, traditionally elected, would become a county-hired position.

Another major change would increase the number of districts in the county from three to five. That would increase the number of county commissioners from three to five.

To read the proposed Charter, go to cumberlandcountychartercommission.org

Kate Bucklin can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106 or kbucklin@theforecaster.net

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