News Feature

Originally published in Castine Patriot, July 4, 2019
Parking, environment addressed by selectmen

New head of the table

Newly hired Town Manager Sean Blodgett, right, discusses town matters with the members of the Castine Board of Selectmen during his first official meeting on July 1.

Photo by Monique Labbe Order prints of selected PBP photos.

by Monique Labbe

With the summer season in full swing, parking has once again become an issue in Castine, this time, on Perkins Street.

Castine Board of Selectmen chairman Peter Vogel brought up the issue during a meeting of the board on July 1. Currently, several cars are parking on both sides of the narrow street, making it difficult to pass and “impossible” for a fire truck to get through if it had to, he said.

Karen Motycka reviewed the parking ordinance for that street, which states that parking is not allowed at any time on the south side of the section of the street that connects Pleasant and Main streets. The road extends to Tarratine Street, and that section does not have any restrictions. Vogel suggested, and selectmen Colin Powell and Gordon MacArthur agreed, that the ordinance should change to extend the restriction along the entire street.

The change requires a public hearing, which was scheduled for July 15, 4 p.m.

Another discussion was prompted by Bob Vagt, about the possibility of looking into a glass crusher at the transfer station.

“There is a market out there for crushed glass,” said Vagt. “Right now, we are putting an awful lot of stuff into those black bags.”

Vagt suggested the funds come from somewhere other than taxpayer dollars. Newly hired Town Manager Sean Blodgett said that while he does have a stack of information on his desk pertaining to the topic, right now the town is not at a place where something like that is possible.

“The problem is that the glass has to be perfectly clean, as clean as your dishes from the dishwasher, before they can go into that crusher,” said Vogel. “You’d need someone standing out there looking at every single piece that went in.”

That discussion, and a comment about solar energy made by Don Tenney, also prompted a conversation about the possibility of forming an ad hoc environmental committee to look at ways the town can improve its carbon footprint. The selectmen put the call out for anybody interested in being a part of that committee to come forward. Further discussion on the matter is also set for the July 15 meeting.