Meriturn Partners Meet with Millinocket and East Millinocket Town Officials 

Town leaders from Millinocket and East Millinocket met with Meriturn Partners again Thursday, the company that wants to buy the Katahdin Paper Mills.The agreement between all parties includes several conditions.Meriturn is looking for 48 million dollars in tax breaks from both communities.The head of the select board in East Millinocket says that would mean significant cuts to the town budget.Thursday, Meriturn presented the towns with a variation of the original request.Neither side is discussing the terms.Both communities will now meet separately to talk about the new proposal.”I think they’re making an effort. It’s very hard. Economically it’s going to impact the communities greatly and I just think that we don’t want to jump into anything. Both the company and the communities want to take a little of time here. There is a deadline.””They’re working for a solution. They realize that the towns are under the gun as far as the loss tax revenue and they’re trying to look for ways to help us make up that difference. What we’re going to do is our attorney is going to check into the legality and logistics of their proposal and should it fly we’ll probably go for it.”The company that currently owns the mills says if a sale doesn’t go through, it’s planning to shut down the East Millinocket plant by April 22nd. The millinocket Mill closed in 2008.Both communities will meet as a joint committee Monday evening to compare notes and see if they can come to a mutual agreement.Meriturn has reached a tentative agreement on a labor contract with union workers.The United Steelworkers Union says they continue to work on details of the health insurance plan, which has not been finalized yet.But, the union won’t make further comment on the provisions until workers have a chance to review the agreement and vote on the terms in a secret ballot.