August 18, 2019

Four candidates expected at public forum Oct. 25 in Houlton

HOULTON – The four candidates who are hoping to garner or retain a seat on the Town Council on Nov. 7 will get a chance to tell the public what they can do for the town during a forum organized by the Greater Houlton Chamber of Commerce.

The annual candidates forum will be held Oct. 25 in the council chamber of the Town Office.

The session will be broadcast live on the local public access TV channel.

Two council seats are up for grabs this year, and all of the candidates vying for them have been involved in municipal government in some form.

Paul Cleary and Phil Bernaiche are incumbents who hope to retain their seats on the board in the election. Both Cleary and Bernaiche have served on the council several times in the past, in concert with serving on subcommittees in the municipality.

Elizabeth “Betty” Childers and Nancy Ketch are challenging the two sitting board members.

Public service is not new to either Childers or Ketch.

Childers held a seat for a number of years on the SAD 29 board of directors, including serving as its chairwoman.

She has been a longtime volunteer at Houlton Regional Hospital.

Ketch served as executive director of the Chamber for more than 12 years before stepping down in 1999. She is a member of the Shiretown Development Corp. and has served on Houlton’s board of budget review.

Lori Weston, executive director of the Chamber, said Thursday that this year’s format will be the same as in the past. The four candidates will be asked a series of questions by moderator Galen Wilde. Residents may ask questions of the candidates by telephoning them in the night of the event.

The forum has been held in Houlton during election years for more than a decade.

The session begins at 6:30 p.m.

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