What Does a Merger Mean for Carlton and Thomson?
Posted at: 10/28/2013 5:44 PM
| Updated at: 10/28/2013 10:53 PM
Lawrence St. Germain is not your typical mayor.
"I do the maintenance," St. Germain said. "I take care of the water and the sewer lines."
Those are just a couple ways St. Germain helps run the small city of Thomson, but he's ready for a break.
"The younger people don't want to participate," St. Germain said. "The older people like myself have had enough. I've been doing the Mayor for 11 years."
This frustration is one thing that's led to the question on mail-in ballots in both Thomson and Carlton asking voters if the cities should merge.
"If 50 percent of both communities vote for the merger then it goes through," Carlton Mayor Kitty Bureau said.
Bureau supports the merger.
"We would become a community combined of over 1,000 people which gives us more opportunity for grants and stuff like that," Bureau said.
Carlton already provides water, fire, ambulance and a post office to Thomson, but the possible merger is a two-way street. Thomson has more undeveloped land.
"We don't have a lot of room to grow where that would be a plus for us," Bureau said.
Community members in both cities have opinions on both sides of the fence, but merger support seemed stronger.
"I don't think it will change things too much," Thomson resident Alan Johnson said. "I feel like we can have a little more say about what goes on in Carlton which affects us because we're so close to it."
"I'm for it," Thomson resident Judy Kremer said. "I think it will help a lot of us."
While Kremer said she supports the merger, she will miss her small city if it passes.
"I like the idea of a little town," Kremer said.
If the merger is approved by voters, it won’t go into effect until January of 2015. The Thomson city clerk and mayor plan on retiring by December 2014.