Voting is an important process on Frye Island, and is a key part of Town Meetings and Stockholder meetings, i.e. Frye Island Incorporated (FII). The following paragraphs describe three types of voting done on the Island:

  1. FII Stockholder.  Every person that owns real property on Frye Island is a stockholder in Frye Island Incorporated. There are no certificates issued, but all stockholders are identified by their ownership of a lot on Frye Island. A person might own multiple lots on Frye Island. Each lot gives that person one share of stock. For each share of stock, the person gets one vote, e.g. a person owning three lots would get three votes. There is normally one FII stockholder meeting per year. The meeting is held during the September Labor Day weekend and has a major focus of (1) electing individuals to the Board of Directors and (2) approving the budget for the following fiscal year. It is the responsibility of the property owner to keep the Frye Island office informed of current address. If there are multiple owners listed on the property deed, the office must me notified who has the voting responsibility. If you are a property owner, check our the FII Voter Ledger (formally called "Capital Stock Ledger") to see if your name is correctly listed (see the note below regarding recent purchases). The number in the FII column denotes the number of FII shares held.

  2. Board of Island Trustee Member (BIT). The Town Charter for the Town of Frye Island allows more people to be invloved in the voting process on the Island than any other Town. It allows people to be an active part of the process, even if they are not a resident of the Town. The following definition comes directly from the Charter as modified 10-9-04:

    Eligibility for Membership. He or she must be a citizen of the United States, at least 18 years of age, and an owner or a spouse of an owner of real property located within the Town of Frye Island with a fixed home currently occupied by the person, maximum two people per fixed home.

    The Board of Selectmen of the Town of Frye Island have provided the following guidelines regarding BIT membership:

    1. Since Frye Island has no official occupancy permit process, a cottage that is being built will be available for a maximum of two BIT votes when a Town tax bill is issued that includes the assessed value of the cottage.

    2. If the same person or persons own more than one cottage on the Island, they will be eligible to receive maximum two votes.

    3. If a property owner has multiple cottages on a single lot, they will be eligible to receive a maximum two votes.

    4. If a property owner has a bunk house (a building that has one or more bedrooms, one or more bath rooms, no full kitchen), they will not be eligible to receive a BIT vote.

    The people on the BIT are listed on the BIT Voter Ledger. There is normally one BIT meeting per year. The meeting is held during the October Columbus Day weekend and has a major focus of (1) electing representatives and (2)approving the budget for the following fiscal year. It is the responsibility of the property owner to keep the Frye Island office informed of current address. If you are a cottage owner, check our the  BIT Voter Ledger to see if your name is correctly listed (see the note below regarding recent purchases).

  3. Town of Frye Island Voter.  Being a Town Voter in Frye Island is like being a voter in any town. In addition to voting at Town Meetings, you are able to vote at all county, State of Maine, and Federal elections. A person wanting to be a Town Voter needs to register with the Town Clerk. If you are a Town Voter, you CANNOT be a voter in another town. State of Maine laws allow people to register as late as the day of the Town Meeting, but it is recommended that you visit the Town Office to save time. Your former voting place will be immediately notified of a registration change and you will not be eligible to vote in a place other than Frye Island for 90 days following the Maine registration.

At the Labor Day and Columbus Day weekends, the meetings are held at the Frye Island Community Center. Information about Town/BIT meetings and FII Stockholder meetings is regularly posted to the website. The registration process for the meetings typically starts shortly after 8 AM, and the meetings begin at 9 AM. Coffee is provided, so come early, register and interact with your fellow Islanders. Any questions about this process should be directed to the Frye Island Office.
 

Note:

If Your Name Is Not Listed  . . .

When real estate properties change hands, Cumberland County is notified by recording the deeds (might take a few days to a few weeks depending on the legal office doing the paperwork). Cumberland County then notifies the Town of the change in ownership (might take 1-3 months). The Town then updates its property database.

The Capital Stock Ledger for Frye Island Incorporated and the Board of Island Trustees Voter List for the Town  are produced from the Town property database.  If your property was purchased a few months before an Island meeting, there is good chance that you will not be listed as the owner.

Typically, a new person to the Island is not interested in getting into the voting routine right away. In all likelihood, all of your information will be posted to County, Town & FII records in plenty of time to be listed as a voter for the next cycle of meetings. (This has nothing to do with being a Maine voter; that can be accomplished as late as on the day of an election according to Maine law.)

If you want to come to a meeting as an observer to learn the process, there is nothing you have to do except show up at the meeting. If you want to vote as a FII Stockholder, bring some proof of the sale to the meeting and come to the registration early.

 

Blue Line

Posted: 08/09/2012