Houseboat limits going to voters

SOUTHWEST HARBOR — Proposed restrictions on houseboats in the town’s coastal waters will go to voters this fall.

The board of selectmen Aug. 12 approved a recommendation by the harbormaster and harbor committee to place the proposed amendment to the harbor ordinance on the Nov. 4 warrant.

If approved, houseboats would be prohibited from mooring or anchoring except at marinas that provide “a permanent float, dock or slip from which the houseboat may be directly boarded from land, connection to a public water supply by means of an individual anti-backflow valve, a sewer connection to a public sewage system [and] a year-round, all weather supply of electricity.”

Dysart’s Great Harbor Marina is currently the only facility in Southwest Harbor that can satisfy all of those requirements.

Harbormaster Adam Thurston said that Jay Clement, senior project manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Maine, has urged the town to adopt such restrictions.

Voters in November also will decide whether to lift the town’s ban on fishing from town docks between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Thurston and the harbor committee recommend the change.

“I don’t get complaints from boaters that (people fishing from town docks) are in the way or that they are being disruptive,” Thurston told the selectmen. “I think it’s a good thing to let happen.”

Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]
Dick Broom

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