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Some Bangor Residents Want New Arena To Go To A Vote 

Last night, the Bangor City Council discussed ways to pay for a new $80-million arena. Wednesday a group of Bangor residents continued their push to put the matter to a vote.Tuesday night, the Bangor City Council was told there is a way to pay for the new arena without affecting taxpayers. “We want to keep this off the backs of the Bangor taxpayers,” says City Councilor Gerry Palmer.But a group of citizens, led by Bob Cimbolleck, say they’re not buying it. They want the matter to go to the voters. “In Bangor right now it’s been a dictatorship where 9 people want to make the decision for the taxpayers of bangor and the residents of Bangor.”Palmer says he’s not opposed to a referendum “The citizens have a right to a referendum and I encourage them at any time they want to do that that’s certainly within their purview.”Cimbollek says he’s got the necessary signatures to start the referendum process. He just needs to make sure the language is correct, a mistake he says he made the first time it was submitted. “We do have two questions on there,” says Cimbollek. “One is are you in favor of a new arena and two are you in favor of a recall on the councilors that vote for it without a referendum.”The petition must be certified by the city clerk and the language of the referendum questions must be approved by the city solicitor. Then Cimbollek and his group would have 30 days to collect more than 2200 signatures. When asked if he thought the city was stalling Cimbollek had this to say. “Put it this way. If it quacks like a duck, and it walks like a duck, and it waddles like a duck, it might be a duck.” Palmer says that’s not what is happening here. “I don’t think that’s the case. Norm Heitmann, our city solicitor, has tried to be very helpful but we can’t script the referendum question for him.”Cimbollek is afraid the city council could move ahead with a vote before he has a chance to collect the signatures to force a referendum. “I firmly believe if we get this thing tomorrow we’ll have our signatures before the 13th which is before they can do anything.”Palmer says the city council won’t take serious action on the project until their meeting on January 10th.