Minutes of the Chebeague Transition Committee January 17, 2007 at 7:15 at the Parish House. (Accepted 1/24/07)
Members present: Donna Damon, Mark Dyer, Leon Hamilton, David Hill, John Martin (Chair), Jim Phipps, Doug Ross, Stephen Todd, and Carol White. Steve Moriarty served as invited Chair.
Next Meetings: January 21, 2007 at 9:00 at the Rec Center
January 24, 2007 at 7:15 at the Parish House.
1. Donna Damon moved, seconded by Leon Hamilton to approve the minutes of January 10. Approved unanimously.
Carol White moved, seconded by Donna Damon to approve the minutes of January 14. Passed unanimously.
2. Public comments: none.
3. Old business:
a. Land Use Subcommitteeıs recommendation to adopt a revised section 600 of the Zoning Ordinance covering the code enforcement officer and the Zoning Board of Appeals.
Beth Howe explained that this was just the first section of the Zoning Ordinance to come to the TC. The rest is in process. She said that her subcommittee would defer to the Governmental Structure Subcommittee on the appointment of the ZBA by the Board of Selectmen rather than election by the Town Meeting. John Martin asked whether Beth and Leon Hamilton were working together to coordinate their ordinances. Beth said yes, but they have to do some more work on the radius for public notification of hearings. David Hill moved, seconded by Leon Hamilton to recommend that the proposed ordinance language be included in a warrant article and recommended to the July 2 Town Meeting. Approved unanimously.
b. Marine Issues: Coastal Waters Ordinance
Leon Hamilton had distributed the draft ordinance and a recommendation to adopt it (attached). He said that Donna Damon had sent him an email with questions and he would go through them to see if the TC agreed with changes she had suggested. Others could ask questions as sections come up. Then the whole, amended ordinance could be voted on.
John Martin asked how different the ordinance was from Cumberlandıs. Leon said not very much except for the provisions on aquaculture.
Sect. 5.3 Difference between abandoned and unregistered moorings is covered in the definitions section on page 18.
Mooring fees are assessed for the calendar year, with 6 months to pay the fee. The Town will have a July-June fiscal year. Should the moorings be on that schedule instead? It was decided that they should be left on a calendar year basis.
Sect. 5.4.3 Carol White asked about the difference between commercial and recreational fishermen, and who would be included in ³commercial-non-fishing. Leon said commercial fishermen have a permit from DMR. Commercial non-fishing moorings would be those held by the hotel, CTC, the boatyard or other such businesses. Leon said he would include a definition of commercial fishermen.
Sect 6.1 Town of Chebeague was changed to Board of Selectmen.
Sect 7.3 Where are moorings allowed? Sect 5.4 give the Harbormaster the authority to decide this. There was a discussion of how to define the eastern boundary of the Town of Chebeague. David Hill said this was an issue that had come up during secession because there never had been a definitive statement of Cumberlandıs boundaries, going back to 1820. Town of Chebeague boundaries are all defined in relation to surrounding towns, with no eastern boundary defined. Leon Hamilton explained that state waters only went out three miles and that the three-mile limit was the customary boundary line. Sam Ballard was concerned about this lack of definition for the purposes or aquaculture. Steve Moriarty asked if there was a consensus on leaving the language that included the three mile limit. Everyone agreed.
Sect 8.4.5 Should the Harbormaster consult with the selectmen? John Martin asked if this was language similar to Cumberlandıs Leon said it was taken from the Maine Statutes.
Sect 9.4 Notifications. The second contact will be changed to the administrator rather than the Town Clerk.
Sect 10.13 Numbers of shellfish licenses. Donna Damon said present practice is to have the Council authorize the number of licenses that has been worked out between DMR and the Shellfish Commission. A clause will be added at the end. ³and approved by the selectmen.² Steve Moriarty asked if there was consensus on this. Everyone agreed.
Sect 10.22 Appointment and Compensation of Shellfish Warden. The compensation must be acted on by the Town Meeting. Steve Moriarty suggested ³shall appoint a Shellfish Conservation (Clam) Warden yearly and shall recommend the Wardenıs compensation to the Town Meeting.² He asked if there was consensus on that. Everyone agreed.
Sect 11.2.1 Is there a fee for houseboats. No.
Sect 12.2 ³Functionally water dependent uses² includes fishhouses.
Sect 12.4.12 Notification of property owners. Donna Damon asked if it was necessary to advertise in two newspapers. David Hill said he thought all island property owners should be notified. Jim Phipps said that would be expensive. David also asked if the four posting locations were specified. Bette Tellinghuisen asked how the notice provisions would work for people living on other islands. Donna Damon said the Portland Press Herald or the Forecaster might reach them. Steve Moriarty summarized the discussion with the statement that there should be an effort to work toward consistency between ordinances on notice provisions. He asked if there was agreement on 1500 foot/property owners? Yes Posting at 4 locations? Yes Two newspapers? Yes.
Town Float at Chandlerıs Cove Wharf. Can the Town of Chebeague Island regulate a state wharf? Jim Phipps thought that Towns can regulate parking on state roads, so why not state wharves? Mark Dyer asked whether the Marine Issues Subcommittee had considered having tie-up fees at the Chandlerıs Cove Town float. Leon Hamilton said they had but they though it would be too complex to add that this year. The Selectmen could think about that later.
Carol White asked how many moorings there are on Chebeague. Leon Hamilton said that he would find that out at his next meeting in Cumberland.
David Hill, seconded by Carol White, moved to recommend that the amended ordinance language be included in a warrant article and recommended to the July 2 Town Meeting. Carol asked whether, once it was adopted by the TC, the ordinance would be available to be reviewed by the public. Leon Hamilton was willing to have it public, but worried that that would produce another round of changes. Jim Phipps said that it would only be changed if someone brought an amendment to the TC. David Hill said it would be available in the virtual library. John Ash suggested that it be in the Chebeague Library. Herb Maine asked whether public hearings could be used as a way to get public input on budgets and ordinances. Bette Tellinghuisen said she wanted to be able to look at the ordinance – ³the devil is in the details.² John Wilson said that everyone has to recognize that the ordinances canıt be made perfect for the first Town Meeting. Steve Moriarty suggested that the TC consider at its next meeting how to disseminate proposed ordinances. Steve Moriarty asked for a vote on the Coastal Waters Ordinance as amended. The vote was unanimously in favor.
c. Finance Committee proposals:
Gifts and donations. Carol asked if this was a policy for the future Town or just for the TC from now till July. David Hill said it applied to the TC. The wording was changed to read: ³The Transition Committee may, in its discretion, gratefully accept donations of equipment, services or money on behalf of the future Town of Chebeague Island.² John Birkett asked whether the TC had this power already. Steve Moriarty said it was useful to have a formal policy and Carol White said this indicated that the TC as a group has to accept, rather than just individuals. Jim Phipps made the point that any gift not specifically voted for would be considered rejected. Steve Moriarty and David Hill agreed. Donna Damon moved the revised wording, seconded by Carol White. The vote was 8 in favor, 1 (John Martin) opposed.
$50,000 line of credit to fund the start up of the Town and the Town office. A private individual on the island will guarantee the loan. The details are being arranged. It would be paid back with the proceeds of the Townıs first tax anticipation note, not as part of the long-term debt. Carol White said she was not sure that the TC has the authority to borrow money. She suggested getting a legal opinion. Jim Phipps said that the TC has no authority to borrow. If an unknown person is willing to borrow money for the Town, with faith that they will be paid back after July, then he thought that was a very nice offer. Leon Hamilton said he had reservations about this and wants public feedback at the January 28 meeting.
Doug Ross asked whether there would be money for other things besides the Town office. The Public Safety Subcommittee has transition expenses. David said the money could cover a broad range of things. Carol said she needs to have a picture of all the transition costs such as Public Works and legal reviews of ordinances. Steve Moriarty and John Martin suggested asking the subcommittees to give the Finance Committee estimates by next week. Mark Dyer said he didnıt know how to estimate the cost of legal services he would need.
[The heat in the Parish House had gone off. At 9:35 Steve Moriarty had to leave for the ferry, taken by Carol White. Then Leon Hamilton had to go to drive the ferry.]
Jim Phipps suggested that the issue of the borrowing should be deferred again until next Wednesdayıs meeting. Beth Howe asked if there would be a meeting on Sunday morning to talk about the January 28 meeting. David Hill said he thought the agenda for the meeting developed last Sunday would be sufficient. Donna Damon said that the group needs to discuss the mailing. Everyone agreed to meet on Sunday at 9:00 at the Rec Center.
Before he left, Leon Hamilton put forward a proposal from the Marine Issues Subcommittee to hire a part-time harbormaster and a part-time clam warden (attachaed). The jobs should be offered separately but could be done by one person. He thought that separating them would make each one attractive to more applicants. Stephen Todd said that having part-time positions might save on benefits. Doug Ross moved, seconded by Donna Damon that the proposal be adopted. The vote was unanimously in favor.
David Hill handed out a report from the Finance Subcommittee. He also reported that Lynn Priest has secured a computer for the Town from the State. Coastal Enterprises Inc will donate a copying machine and Chebeague.net will donate broadband services after the Town pays for the system to be set up (this expense will be billed after July 1, 2007).