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2010/11/16 Minutes
Sebago Mooring Regulations Ordinance Committee

Minutes from Meeting of November 16, 2010

Meeting opened at 6:35 pm following the Board of Selectmen meeting.

In attendance were Committee members Jim Smith, Dick Perry, Phil Lowe, Bruce Hart, Bob DeVilleneuve, and Allen Crabtree.  

Guests present were Tina Vanasse, Robert Cort, Gene Rowe, Bruce Weymouth, Ann Farley, Alan Munroe, Ron and June Johnson, and Ken Williams.

1.      Review of Draft Ordinance – Allen distributed copies of the third draft which included revisions made at the last meeting.  These revisions were reviewed and some modifications made – changes are marked on the fourth draft, which will be distributed separately.  The Committee with free comments and suggestions from the guests then reviewed additional parts of the draft.  It is heartening to see the good turnout of concerned citizens making a valuable contribution to crafting a balanced and fair ordinance.

It was suggested that the draft ordinance be posted on the town website.  Allen said he would do so.  Any interested citizen is invited to these committee meetings and their input is welcome.

Phil Lowe expressed concern about the length of the draft ordinance, comparing it to the brief Harrison one that is the template for the Sebago ordinance.  Part of the additional length is the definitions, but Bob DeV said that it is important to have a solid list of definitions to avoid misinterpretation of the ordinance.  Phil suggested that once the draft is nearly done we go back and check the definitions and those that are not specifically mentioned in the text of the ordinance could be removed.

Phil distributed a definition from the Maine Department of Conservation of Submerged Lands.  There was discussion as to where the shoreline on Sebago Lake was, which would directly affect the size of the Water Safety Zone.  The definition reads:

Great Ponds:  All land below the natural low-water mark of ponds that are 10 or more acres in size in their natural state.

Jim Smith observed that the definition goes on to say:  Publicly owned submerged lands do  not include beaches or other shoreland that is covered by water only at high tide, land that has been flooded by dams,...  There was general discussion as to what this meant for Sebago Lake, where dams control water levels.  Phil thought that, based on established water levels for Sebago Lake, that Mean High Water at 266.5 feet is actually 10.5 feet higher than the Natural Low Water.  This implies that the Water Safety Zone actually extends further out in the lake, which would allow for additional moorings.

The state definition of the Water Safety Zone is:
The area of water within 200 feet of any shoreline, whether the shoreline of the mainland or of an island.

Jim said that he would investigate this question with the Submerged Lands staff.

Several assignments were made to develop or clarify definitions and wording in the draft ordinance.  A new definition for Lake Access was suggested to be incorporated in the draft.

Assignments -  Dick Perry will revise the grandfather clause in the definition section 3 (page 4).  Jim Smith will clarify the definition of a great pond and the question of submerged lands (page 4).  Phil Lowe will clarify the requirement that Marinas comply with other town ordinances (Section 7.5(f) – Page 12).  Allen will incorporate changes made into a fourth draft of the ordinance and will post it on the town website.

All committee members and interested public are asked to continue to review the ordinance, paying close attention to those sections revised as a result of tonight’s meeting to see that that changes reflect what the group agreed to.  Any comments or suggestions should be forwarded to Allen before the next meeting (

2.      Water Safety Zone Rules – Allen distributed a copy of the state rules with the changes that the Bureau of Parks and Lands had recommended in 2008.  Bruce has some suggestions for the buoy markings in lieu of the Bureau’s language.

Assignment -  All are asked to review the draft rules and come to the next meeting prepared to discuss, with the goal of developing language that Sebago will be comfortable with to recommend to George Powell at the Bureau.

Next meeting of the Harbor Master committee is on Tuesday, November  30, at 6pm at the town offices.

Meeting was adjourned at 8:40 p.m.