2017-03-03 / Community

News Briefs

RESIGNATION – Kennebunkport selectmen have accepted the resignation of David Kling from the planning board.

“Dave has done just an amazing job in his service to the town,” board chairman Stuart Barwise said, of his planning counterpart.

“Specifically, in his continuity and steadfast leadership, Dave has done a really extraordinary job,” Barwise said. “He will be sorely missed. I’m sorry to see him stepping down, but he has earned his break for sure.”

Kling, who will continue to serve as a trustee of the Louis T. Graves Memorial Public Library, wrote in his Feb. 13 resignation letter that with the “assumption of other responsibilities” and “personal things I need to do,” he no longer has time to commit to the planning board. However, he did volunteer to continue drafting changes to subdivision regulations, begun under his watch as planning board chairman.

NEW PLANNER – In the wake of David Kling’s resignation as chairman of the Kennebunkport Planning Board, selectmen on Feb. 23 appointed Ledge Road resident Mike Messer to fill out the remainder of Kling’s term, to July.

Messer currently sits on the board of assessment review, although it has not had cause to meet since he joined in 2015. He previously served on the planning board from 1997 to 2005, and on the zoning board of appeals from 2006 to 2014, including seven years of that stretch as ZBA chairman.

The planning board picked Peter Fellenz, who also sits on the RSU 21 Board of Directors, to replace Kling as chairman. Fellenz’ current term on the planning board ends June 30.

According to planning department administrative assistant Lisa Harmon, who gets the chairmanship nod after that has not yet been determined.

POSTED ROADS, PART I – Kennebunkport has posted a series of 21 roads to vehicles in excess of 23,000 pounds, effective from March 1 until at least April 24.

There are no new additions to this year’s list. It is, said Public Works Director Michael Claus at the Feb. 23 selectmen’s meeting, “The usual suspects.”

Heavy vehicles can still use the roads if the air temperature is 32 degrees or below, and there is no unfrozen water visible in any cracks that may exist on the road surface.

“Both conditions must be met,” Claus said. There also are some exemptions for trucks delivering food or other perish- able items. Anyone with questions about road postings should contact Claus at 967-5728.

At their Feb. 28 meeting, Kennebunk selectmen also were slated to post a number of roads to heavy loads until April 30. Questions about those rules should be directed to Public Services Director Eric Labelle at 985-4811.

POSTED ROADS, PART II – At their Feb. 27 meeting, Arundel selectmen also voted to post roads to heavy loads for the season, although Public Services Director Roger Taschereau lamented the number of exceptions in state law.

“There’s more exceptions now than there ever was,” he said. “Feed, fuel, grain, milk — the only thing it seems not excepted are someone with a load of gravel or logs.”

That said, Taschereau asked selectmen to lift a year-round posting on Mountain Road, currently limited to vehicles of less than 15 tons, only, subjecting it to the same seasonal posting rules as other roads in town.

“On the Biddeford side it’s not posted. There’s no warning signs telling you there’s a posted road ahead of you,” he said.

Taschereau said Biddeford officials have said they would allow Arundel to put a sign on its side of the town line. However, he felt that was a less then ideal solution.

“Trying to maintain a sign in another town, that’s not something I would entertain,” he said.

Taschereau said Mountain Road “has been rebuilt several times since it was posted,” adding, “I don’t see the need for leaving that 15 ton posting on there. I don’t think it’s going to become a shortcut that you’ll start seeing a lot more truck traffic over it.” However, lifting the weight limit would “relieve some of the pressure on other roads,” Taschereau said, while allowing delivery trucks to pass through.

“FedEx will not go through,” Taschereau said. “They want a regular permit with a forever date to travel that road.”

Selectmen said they would rule on the request at their, March 13.

AMBULANCE BILLING – Arundel will leave its ambulance billing rates unchanged for 2017. Town Manager Keith Trefethen said at the Feb. 27 selectmen’s meeting that he conducted a review of the rates different town’s assess for transporting patients — bills often paid by the person’s insurance coverage — but found Arundel Rescue fees are on par with local averages. “I was thinking we were in a non-competitive place, that our rates were extremely low in comparison to some of our neighboring communities,” Trefethen said. “But after the comparison was done it appears to me that our existing rates appear to be in line.”

NEW DOCKS – Look for new aquatic outcroppings in Kennebunkport. Following a field trip to inspect the sites, selectmen on Feb. 23 approved permits for two new docks — one replacing a smaller structure at 83 Ocean Ave., and one with an access ramp connected to a permanent pier at 159 Wildes District Road. “The plans were very well thought out. I did not see anything that struck me as even remotely concerning,” board chairman Stuart Barwise said.

Compiled by Staff Writer Wm. Duke Harrington. He can be reached at news@kennebunkpost.com.

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