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Falmouth councilors want more work from harbor panel

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Falmouth councilors want more work from harbor panel

FALMOUTH — The Harbor Committee's proposal for a long-range plan generated much discussion but no real action at Monday's Town Council meeting.
Based on recommendations from a consultant's report, Harbor Committee Chairman Steve Archambault said the time line reflected a "best-case scenario" completion date of 2015 to implement changes to the number and mooring of boats, parking and dinghy regulations.
But after nearly an hour of discussion, during which several councilors questioned the propriety of approving a schedule when they haven't approved the recommendations, the council instructed the committee to submit its recommendations on all elements of the plan for the May 11 Council meeting. The council's instructions to the committee were summed up by Town Manager Nathan Poore and include identifying implementation steps, determining if those steps are conditioned on others, laying out both short and long-term solutions and to add the documents to the Web site.
In other council business:
•Councilor Bonny Rodden said even with curbside recycling there has been no decrease in volume at the silver bullets, causing the town to take another look at them on the eve of budget season.
• Rodden said the Open Space Committee will be determining both the condition of town-owned forests and the impact their management might have to the town, with the assistance of a forester's report.
• Councilor Cathy Breen reminded residents of the upcoming Community Facilities Planning Project at Plummer-Motz School scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 12. After an informational presentation, attendees will break into small groups to discuss the future of Town Hall, the library, Pleasant Hill Fire Station and Plummer-Motz and Lunt schools. Those who wish to participate are encouraged, though not required, to register at the town's Web site or by calling Theo Holtwijk, director of long-range planning, at 781-5253 ext. 5340.
• Poore said the estimate for demolition of a house on town-owned property at 260 Foreside Road came in at $9,000. He added that after inspecting the property, Town Assessor Anne Gregory agreed with an independent consultant's opinion that the house does not add any value to the property. Though Poore said he wouldn't want to see "a full-scale burn" of the structure, he said the Fire Department may want to use it in some way for training.
• On Breen's recommendation, the council chose not to vote on a order seeking membership in the Greater Portland Transit District, but authorized a Memorandum of Understanding.
• Councilors authorized Poore to advocate with the Department of Transportation so its plans to replace a bridge southeast of Maine Turnpike Exit 53 will be designed to accommodate commercial growth. They also discussed the Leighton Road to Mountain Road reconstruction project that has been submitted for state aid through the economic stimulus.
Poore said the project, which would include curb work, sidewalks, landscaping, drainage and street lighting, makes it more important for the council to look at its vision for the Route 100 corridor.

Peggy Roberts can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or proberts@theforecaster.net.