2017-11-17 / In the Know

Chiefs appreciative of support for public safety building

By Robert Moulton and B. Michael Thurlow Special to the Leader

We would like to take this opportunity to thank the residents of our community who took the time to vote on Tuesday, Nov. 7.

After a year of committee meetings and informational meetings across town with various neighborhoods and groups, we are clearly pleased with the result. We feel strongly that this facility will provide a safe, efficient and cost-effective solution for the future. Many thanks to each of you that voted in support of this project.

Having said that, we also recognize that there were a number of residents that voted against the project. While we never heard any question of the need for the facility, we did hear from people that are concerned about the pricing and the amount of bonding that the town carries. We completely understand those concerns. We also know, however, that this need is not going away and will only become more of an issue as our town continues to grow. With construction and interest costs rising, this project would only become more expensive, as would the necessary maintenance to keep the current building going.

Whichever way you voted, we would like to assure you that we will continue to strive to find any cost savings and efficiencies throughout this process and ensure that the project is built on needs and not wants. We will continue to advocate for the “Chevy” and not the “Cadillac” and will weigh that mantra in to any decisions that we make along the way.

We cannot give enough thanks to the members of the ad hoc committee, who put many hours of their own time toward this project and attempting to build support within the community. Individuals included:

Kevin Freeman, chairman of this committee, vice president at Martini Northern Construction Management, former chairman of Scarborough Economic Development Corporation, Day One and a variety of other committees and organizations throughout our community.

Bruce Bell, lifelong resident, 60-plus year member of the Scarborough Fire Department and the driving force behind the construction of Hadlock Field while serving as the deputy director of Portland Public Works Department.

Rocco Risbara, 49-plus year resident and principal of Risbara Brothers Construction Co.

Judy Roy, 60-plus year resident, and former town council member and chairman.

Greg Hanscom, resident, former police chief in Windham and Lewiston police departments, former deputy secretary of state/director of Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles, professor and chairman of the law enforcement program at Southern Maine Community College.

Roger Chabot, resident at large and member of the Scarborough transportation committee.

Rick Meinking, resident, business program manager at Efficiency Maine and chairman of the Scarborough Energy Committee.

Dave Libby, resident, president and CEO of Town and Country Credit Union and the driving force for the new, state-of-the-art Town and Country facility on Route 1.

Kate St. Clair, resident and current vice chairman of the town council.

Peter Hayes, resident and current town council member.

Susan Hamill, resident at large.

What is really amazing to us is that members of this committee, Freeman, Risbara and others, not only gave of their time but also set their own business interests aside to serve on our committee. These individuals, who very likely would have bid on much of the work in this project, decided that it was more important to them to serve on the committee and to help shape this project for their neighbors. We think that really speaks to the integrity of the process and of the quality of the individuals who willingly gave of themselves to be a part of this important project.

We would also like to thank Mike Stephenson who set up the Friends of Scarborough Public Safety group to advocate for the project and raise money for the campaign as well as a memorial for fallen public safety heroes to be built on the grounds of the new facility.

Many thanks, Mike.

Lastly, we would like to thank the members of our respective departments as well as other town staff who gave of their time and energy to support and promote this project.

Robert Moulton is police chief for Scarborough. B. Michael Thurlow is fire chief for Scarborough.

Return to top