To the Editor:
On March 10, the Bar Harbor Board of Appeals denied a lengthy request for reconsideration filed by BHAPTS (Ocean Properties) relating to its attempts to expand its worker housing complex at Acadia Apartments on West Street Extension. BHAPTS’ attorney, Andy Hamilton, is quoted by the Islander as saying that “Nobody argued that” each of the four buildings on that site, containing four apartments each, “was a non-conforming structure.” This 16-unit apartment complex provides each family with only 5,000 square feet of lot area, while the minimum dimensional standard for Village Residential is 10,000 square feet. Thus, each building is a non-conforming structure as defined by the LUO as it “does not meet the dimensional … requirements of the district.” I made this argument to the Planning Board in letters dated Dec. 19, 2018 and Jan. 14, 2019. I repeated that argument before the Superior Court and Justice Anne Murray granted a stay on any commencement of construction upon her finding at page 13 that Ms. Mills was likely to prevail in her argument that these “four non-conforming structures” could not be expanded and enlarged. I made this same argument in filings on Feb. 4, and Feb. 11 before the Board of Appeals, noting that these structures did not meet the dimensional standards for the Village Residential District.
Yet Mr. Hamilton is cited in the Islander as claiming that my partner, Charles Gilbert, who graciously covered the Feb. 11 hearing before the Board of Appeals for me, made “a new argument not included in the written appeal materials.” Apparently, my making this argument five times in writing, two of which were directly addressed to the Board of Appeals, was not enough to catch Mr. Hamilton’s attention.
If Mr. Hamilton is to be believed that “nobody” had previously made this argument that these structures were non-conforming, then I am honored to be considered a “nobody” by him. I gently suggest, however, that he refrain from suggesting that Justice Anne Murray is a “nobody.”