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Comprehensive Planning Committee

Minutes of September 4, 2014

Deputy Town Clerk Stu Marckoon called the meeting to order at 6:34 PM.

Present were:  Comprehensive Planning Committee members Andrea Ames, Brett Jones, Robert Christie, Bonnie Marckoon, Kathryn Gaianguest, Valerie Sprague, Richard McMullen; Administrative Assistant to the Selectmen Stu Marckoon and Code Enforcement Officer Michael Jordan.

Committee member Fred Stocking was unable to attend and had notified the rest of the board prior to the meeting.

Selection of Officers – Chair – Brett nominated Fred Stocking as chair.  Bonnie 2nd.  Vote in favor was unanimous.

Vice Chair – Valerie nominated Kathy Gaianguest as Vice-Char.  Bonnie 2nd.  Vote in favor was unanimous. (Following this vote, Kathy chaired the meeting)

Secretary – Kathy nominated Bonnie Marckoon as Secretary.  Brett 2nd.  Vote in favor was unanimous.  (Stu said he would keep the minutes for this meeting).

Committee mission – Kathy noted that the Comprehensive Plan Planning Committee had prepared a report which has some recommendations and a work plan.  She read an excerpt from the report.  She said the basic mission seems to be to develop a new comprehensive plan to go before the town meeting, and to engage the public in that process. 

Brett suggested finding recently approved comprehensive plans from similar towns such as Milbridge, Trenton and Surry.  He said there are a lot of state requirements, and one is indeed to engage the citizens of the town.  Kathy said the committee had looked over plans from Trenton and South Thomaston.

Kathy suggested the board review the materials that led to the development of the recommendation to develop a new comprehensive plan.  She listed five documents referenced in Attachment “C” of the final report:

Town of Lamoine Comprehensive Plan, adopted March 5, 1996

State of Maine Comprehensive Plan Review Criteria Rule (State Planning Office, Chapter 208)

Updating Your Comprehensive Plan  (State Planning Office, April, 2003)

Comprehensive Planning for Maine Communities (Evan Richert and Sylvia Most, 2005)

Draft Proposal for Comprehensive Plan Update Services (Hancock County Planning Commission, August, 2013)

and the report itself.  Brett said he wasn’t sure that there needed to be a continuation of the pervious board’s work; he said he would like to have the plan be a creation of this group.  Kathy said the current committee will need the documents.   A lengthy discussion followed.

Board members agreed to review the suggested documents.  Two members said they would prefer the documents be printed instead of electronic. 

Timetable – Board members discussed the time table, and it was estimated it will take about 2.5 years to develop a final document.  Kathy said even that amount of time will mean an intense amount of work.

Other Resources – A few other communities were mentioned, including Tremont and Hampden for plan comparisons.  Valerie read a vision statement from one of the plans. A lengthy discussion followed on what kind of vision should be listed, if any.

Committee members agreed it would be helpful to know what is required in a plan.  Kathy suggesting contacting MacGregor Stocco from the State of Maine who handles comprehensive planning, and maybe have him attend the next meeting.

Brett said he would like to have an evening where the committee could just throw around ideas for how the committee should proceed 

There was no objection to inviting Mr. Stocco to the next meeting, and if he is not able to attend, start reviewing the paperwork.   The group agreed the first three items on the above list should be reviewed prior to the next meeting, along with the report from the planning committee.

Meeting Dates – The group felt a monthly meeting would be in order and agreed that the first Thursday of each month at 6:30 would be suitable.  The next meeting will be October 2, and the agenda will be meeting with Mr. Stocco from the former State Planning Office, or reviewing the printed/electronic material.

Other – There was a brief discussion on whether this exercise was an update or a completely new plan.  

Board members then introduced themselves and gave a brief biography of how they came to be in Lamoine.

Freedom of Access Act – Stu (acting in his capacity as FOAA officer) instructed the committee that all their meetings are public, that meeting notices need to be prepared ahead of time, and he would be happy to post them on the town’s website.  He reminded the committee that chance meetings amongst members are inevitable, but town business should not be discussed at such meetings.  He said an executive session would be a rarity on the committee, if ever. 

Meeting Length – The board agreed that a maximum of an hour and a half would be a goal for each meeting.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 7:42 PM

Respectfully submitted,

Stu Marckoon, Recording Secretary pro-tem