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Alyce Maragus

A Review of the 11/13/07 Council Meeting - RE: Our Museum
By Alyce Maragus
Nov 19, 2007 - 6:47:57 AM

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Herewith I offer a quick synopsis of the issue at hand. Our town council has agreed to purchase a building to house our museum. The arrangement allows the museum two years in which to raise the required funds to repay the town and take rightful possession. Should the museum not be successful in their efforts to raise the necessary funds, the building itself represents the "collateral" that will enable the town to recover its expenditure.

Now for an overlay of comments made by some of our esteemed councilors who oppose this purchase with town funding.

Any question you may have had as to which direction Jimmy Mingo would gravitate toward - Polstein or the town - is quite easily answered by his statements during this council meeting.

If in doubt of where he stands, I suggest you catch his performance on KAT-TV.

Mingo registered mostly negative comments and attempted to show only the possible obstacles to be overcome. He approached the need for a sprinkler system, a climate control setting and handicapped accessibility.

Presently housed in two small rooms in the town office, I wonder if the museum has any of these amenities to date? And just how long has our museum survived without them? Only now they become necessities?

Then there was the dire predictions of a new furnace being needed, possibly a new roof in 10-20 years?, and a possibility of some asbestos floor tiles. And yet, Mike Noble, our code enforcement inspector has declared the building to be quite sound even with these minor problems, all of which the museum board was aware of and willing to address.


Polstein's outburst that this purchase under such conditions was outrageous should be examined very closely. Really! Outrageous - then what would he call the $50,000 for an elevator in a building not owned by the town or MAGIC? And what would he call the $30,000 "no strings attached" money that was given to Guilds Hollowell for a sham of a Cultural Center, both of which were council approved but with NO "collateral" in sight. Just what exactly is Polstein's definition of "outrageous"?

And guess what, throughout all the debate, Bangor Daily News reporter Nick Sambides Jr. never once questioned our charter requirements. What's up with that?

In all honesty, this may not be the best building for our museum nor may it be the best bargain. Only time will tell - but - can we save our museum from those who want to CONTROL it?

One thing I will tell you is that it will ensure that all of Millinocket's artifacts will remain in the hands of Millinocket. That alone has to be worth any controversy.

Now, I would ask that all of you "local" people join together and help make this a successful project, both for the museum and for the town.

You have a chance to save "our" heritage and "our" culture. If you can see your way clear, please consider giving a financial donation that will help keep the museum up and running and hopefully ensure its success.

Remember it's your heritage at stake.

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Alyce Maragus
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