Newcastle town hall meeting draws big audience

Candidates grilled on future of district
By: Staff Report
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A town hall meeting held to allow Newcastle fire board candidates to speak on issues and proponents and opponents of Measure K to voice their concerns was well attended Tuesday night.

The Newcastle Elementary gym was packed with residents who came to hear presentations from the three incumbents and three challengers for the Newcastle Fire Protection District Board of Directors.

The meeting started with presentations from Suzie Brown, a supporter of Measure K, and Michael Leydon, a supporter of Measure B.

Measure K would reform Measure B in that it would cap the $146.46 tax after three years at $30 in order to build a new Newcastle firehouse and fund pay increases and benefits for firefighters.

Those in favor or Measure B stated at the meeting that Measure K does not raise enough money to build the firehouse and fund the wage increases, but Measure K supporters felt it would be enough and that Measure B is too high of a tax to place on some residents on fixed incomes, particularly the elderly.

Additionally, the three incumbent fire board members up for reelection, Chairwoman Yvonne Lewis, Vice Chairman Bob Stearns and board member David Poore, spoke at the meeting. The three challengers, Jonita "Joni" Elder; Dave Ward and Jimmie Jordan, also stated their positions at the meeting.

Written questions from the audience were taken by the candidates at the end of the meeting.

For full coverage of Tuesday's meeting, check the Auburn Journal's Thursday edition.