October 25, 2007 | last updated November 30, 2011 9:07 pm

Tugboat builder scraps Harpswell plans

Washburn and Doughty Associates Inc., the largest tugboat builder on the East Coast, has abandoned its plans to expand in Harpswell.

The East Boothbay-based company has ended negotiations with Harpswell to lease a five-acre parcel of town-owned land in Mitchell Field, a former Navy fuel depot, the Brunswick Times Record reported yesterday. The company instead will build on land adjacent to its current facility, a decision resulting mostly from time constraints, Bruce Doughty, the company's president, told the paper. According to the Portland Press Herald, the company and the town were unable to come to a lease agreement in time to put the item on the Nov. 6 ballot.

Washburn and Doughty, which currently employs 90, in February announced its intention to expand in Bucksport, but scrapped that plan in June over concern that Cianbro Corp.'s redevelopment of the Eastern Fine Paper mill in Brewer would mean fewer available workers. The Harpswell location, which this summer was met with opposition from a group of citizens, would have brought 50 jobs to the area, the Times Record reported.

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