2017-09-15 / Front Page

Three ordinances go to Port voters

By Wm. Duke Harrington Staff Writer

KENNEBUNKPORT — When voters in Kennebunk go to the polls Nov. 7, they will find three ordinances awaiting their approval — or not.

The first of the three is likely the one that will act as the biggest driver of turnout. It is a proposal to ban retail marijuana uses from Kennebunkport, including cultivation, manufacture, and testing for purposes of sale, as well as the actual sale or use in stores or so-called social clubs.

The balance of the legalization measure adopted by voters in November 2016 would remain, meaning individuals age 21 and older can still possess up to 2.5 ounces of processed marijuana and can grow up to six mature plants for personal use, with another 12 plants not yet ready for cultivation also allowed.

Statewide, the vote to legalize recreational use of marijuana passed by just 4,073 votes of nearly 760,000 ballots cast. In Kennebunkport, 50.9 percent of voters favored legalization. However, the board of selectmen and a vocal contingent of regular meeting attendees have since opined that legalization in Kennebunkport ought to be be for personal use only, and should not extend to commercial operations.

The second ordinance vote is to amend the town’s existing land use rules regarding growth manage- ment permits. At the Sept. 7 meeting at which selectmen certified the warrant, Town Clerk Tracey O’Roak said the edit “just adds a little bit of clarification.”

The one change specifically exempts construction or alteration of accessory apartment units — known colloquially as an in-law apartment — from the need to take out a $250 growth permit.

The third vote will update the town’s waterfront ordinance. According to O’Roak, this amendment also “basically just clarifies some things that are already in there.”

At the Sept. 7 meeting, O’Roak said these clarifications include:

 Defining that references to “vessels” in the ordinance includes work floats,

 Formally noting that the harbormaster is allowed to remove all unmarked and unauthorized moorings,

 Making clear that permit holders need to prove ownership of any boat tied to their moorings, and,

 Putting it in writing that the harbormaster can send notices to permit holders by regular U.S. mail, instead of by certified mail only.

Selectmen have set a public hearing on all of the proposed ordinance changes for Oct. 12.

Those hearings will take place as part of the regular selectmen’s meeting for that night, which gets underway at 7 p.m. at the North Street Fire Station.

Staff Writer Duke Harrington can be reached at news@kennebunkpost.com.

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