WINTER HARBOR – In a meeting that lasted just over 45 minutes, voters in Winter Harbor quickly used the town hall mandate when they gathered on June 16 at the town hall.
A mandate article that would, in part, allow the city’s discussion to sell and / or alienate any property acquired by tax lien after offering the property to previous owners for payment of all tax arrears, sparked the discussion. fees and interest, and if they decline, advertising for sealed offers on [the] even.”
Sarah Joy proposed amending the article to state that the board would first welcome strictly sealed bids from residents of Winter Harbor before opening the bidding process to the rest of the public.
“The city is going to invest in itself,” Joy said of the proposed amendment, adding that it would give people who grew up in Winter Harbor a better chance of buying property there.
According to statistics from the Maine Association of Realtors, real estate sales continue to grow amid the pandemic. The median sale price of a home in Hancock County in April (the association’s most recent data available) was $ 278,500, an increase of more than 21% from the year last at the same time. That number is higher than the state average of $ 276,000.
Statistics also show that statewide homes stay on the market for eight days, down from 25 days in 2020 and 46 days in 2019.
A Jan. 22 report in the Portland Press Herald found that a third of home sales have gone to out-of-state buyers since the pandemic. That’s a one in four increase.
A discussion ensued on the definition of a resident, as Winter Harbor has many taxpayers who do not live full time in the city.
Jeffrey Alley Jr. noted that there is a legal definition of a resident, but the city should consult its legal counsel to avoid allegations of discrimination when limiting who can bid on a property.
The amendment was rejected and Selectman Kittridge Rivers said the city should discuss the matter further.
In other matters, voters approved a general government budget of $ 197,444.
In elections held on June 8, Rivers was re-elected to his seat on Selectmen’s board after receiving 48 votes. Herman Faulkingham received three votes. Alley was re-elected to the Board of Directors of Regional Academic Unit 24 (RSU 24) with 45 votes.