Q&A with Naples selectmen candidates

NAPLES — After last year’s local election, there were new faces on the Naples Board of Selectmen.

In 2018, two sitting board members are running unopposed.

The ballot voting takes place Tuesday, May 22, in the Naples gymnasium from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Prior to Tuesday, a polling booth has been set up in foyer of the town office for those residents wishing to vote via absentee ballot.

One difference between the two selectmen is: Rich Cebra is wrapping up a three-year term that began in 2015 and Jim Turpin was elected last year to his seat with one remaining year after Christine Powers resigned.

The two men in the running took time from their busy schedules to answer a few questions for The Bridgton News.

BN: What government boards and committees have you been involved with?

Rich Cebra

Cebra: I am currently serving in my third year on the Naples select board. I am also finishing a three-year term on the Casco Naples Bulky Waste Commission. I served on the Naples Budget Committee for five years, until June 2007 (two years as vice-chairman). I was the Vice Chair of the Naples Comprehensive Plan Update Committee. I am a founding member of Naples Main Street; I was a member of the Naples Causeway Bridge Restoration Committee.

In November 2016 I was elected to a fifth nonconsecutive term in the Maine Legislature. (Now District #68 the towns of Naples, Sebago, Baldwin, Cornish and part of Parsonsfield) I am serving my fourth term as a member of the Joint Standing Committee on Transportation.

From November 2004 to December 2012 I represented House District #101in the Maine State Legislature. (The Towns of Naples, Casco and Poland). I served as the House Chairman of the Joint Standing Committee on Transportation (two years). I was a member of the Joint Standing Committee on State and Local Government (two years), and The Joint Standing Committee on Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (two years). I served as the Chairman of the House Ethics Committee (two years), and I was named to the Joint Select Committee on Joint Rules for the 125th Legislature, I was appointed to the Commission to Reapportion Maine's Congressional Districts in 2011 and served as the Republican Chairman on the Statewide Redistricting Commission in 2013. I have also served on the Motor Vehicle Advisory Board, and the Maine Turnpike Budget Subcommittee.

Jim Turpin

Turpin: I have been on the Naples Budget Committee for the past four years and the Naples Board of Selectmen for the past year. Much experience and insight gained thereby.

BN: What government boards and committees have you been involved with? Also, could you please list any jobs or volunteer work that is applicable to the seat for which you are running?

Cebra: I own a small business in Naples and have been a member of both the Greater Bridgton Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce and the Sebago Lake Region Chamber of Commerce. Both provide an economic development and community perspective that is applicable to small town government management.

BN: Why are you running for another term on the Naples Board of Selectmen?

Cebra: There is still a lot of work to do to make Naples all it can be while honoring it’s past. It is vitally important that there be people on the board who have some institutional knowledge about issues that have come up in the past that often come up again. I’ve gained an understanding of that history by being involved for the last 15 years.

Turpin: Reason number one: I very much enjoy living here in Naples and feel that I owe a civic debt of gratitude.

Reason number two: I would like to be able to afford the taxes here in Naples in my old age an,d therefore, seek to control the mil rate while in office.

BN: What in your opinion is the most important matter in the town of Naples?

Cebra: On the select board our job is to provide the residents of Naples a transparent and efficient town government that enriches the quality of life, while at the same time getting unneeded obstacles out of our local businesses’ way so our economy can prosper.

Turpin: Increasing the commercial and residential tax base, toward providing the services and infrastructure needed, while maintaining a stable mil rate.

— DD

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