October 1, 2015 (Transportation Task Force)

Transportation Task Force
Meeting Notes
October 1, 2015
Islesford Neighborhood House on LCI at 4:00 P.M.

Meeting called to order at 4:00 P.M.
Members Present: Paul Thormann, Skip Stevens, Joy Sprague, Jason Pickering; By
teleconference: Chris White, Sam Donald, Ingrid Gaither

Other Present: Jim Fortune, Joanne Thormann, Joy Sprague, Malcolm Fernald
Charlie Norris, Charlie Norris, Carl Brooks and Ed Gray (by teleconference)

Discussion about the warrant Articles that the TTF drafted to recommend to the
Selectmen. Jason Pickering asked David Bunker if he would send a formal letter to the
Town about the sale of Beal and Bunker and what his intentions are.

A general consensus amongst Town residents is that they are not interested in the Town
purchasing Beal & Bunker. The concern amongst residents is primarily the impact on
property taxes. Perhaps the Town should focus on obtaining landing rights in Northeast
Harbor. Based on information received at the NEH Management Committee, landing
rights go with the company. How would the sale of Beal and Bunker affect continuity
service for the Town. The TTF is concerned that a new owner might have different
ideas about ferry service that may not fit the Town’s needs. David Bunker has said that he
will continue service until a buyer is found and he will help with the transfer.

Landing rights go with the company, as reported at the September Harbor Management
Committee in NEH. A significant change in how the those rights are exercised by a new
owner might cause the NEH to review it. If landing rights open up, they are awarded via a
lottery.

Warrant for Special Town Meeting, October 24, 2015.
Drafts of Possible Articles: The following are for discussion at the TTF meeting.

1. To see if the voters of the TCI will vote to authorize the selectmen to issue an RFP for temporary short-term ferry service in the event that the current service should be suspended or cancelled.

2. Direct TTF to complete a Long Term Ferry Plan, including a service plan and a financial plan, for possible implementation in Fall 2016, this plan to be presented to the voters at the 2016 annual Town Meeting.

3. To see if the voters of the TCI will vote to authorize the selectmen to explore the creation of a 501c3 non-profit corporation to operate a ferry service on behalf of the town. Explanation. The concept to be explored is that of a non-profit that would be independent of town government but which would receive a town subsidy much as the current commuter service does. Before being presented to the voters for approval, the structure of the non-profit, including organization and a business plan, would be planned with appropriate legal advice.

4. To see if the voters of the TCI will vote to authorize the selectmen to enter into negotiations with the Town of Mt. Desert to revise the ordinance governing landing rights in such a way as to ensure perpetual access to the docks in Northeast Harbor by a passenger service managed by and serving the Town of Cranberry Isles.

5. To see if the voters of the TCI will vote to enact an ordinance entitled “Town of Cranberry Isles, Ordinance for the Use of Town Docks for Commercial Passenger and Freight Service.”

With deletions and modifications, the following are the proposed Warrant Articles for the Selectmen to review:

1. To see if the voters of the Town of Cranberry Isles will vote to authorize the selectmen
to issue a Request for Proposal (RFP) for ferry service in the event that the current service
is suspended, cancelled or altered.

Note: Draft Explanation: While it is understood that current ferry service intends to continue to operate into and through the winter, there is no certainty at this time regarding how long or what level of service will be provided. This warrant would allow the Town to be ready to expand the current commuter service if needed during the winter, spring and/or summer months for 2015-16.

2. To see if the voters of the Town of Cranberry Isles will vote to authorize the selectmen to enter into negotiations with the Town of Mt. Desert to revise the ordinance governing landing rights in such a way as to ensure continuous access to the docks in Northeast Harbor by a ferry service serving the Town of Cranberry Isles.

Note: In response to the findings at the September 2015 meeting with the Town of Mount Desert Marine Management Committee regarding current Town of Mount Desert’s Marine Management ordinances for transfer of landing expired rights by lottery, it is necessary for the Cranberry Isles Board of Selectmen to request a change of ordinance to allow for non-lottery designation of landing rights for vital TCI water transit.

Meeting adjourned at 5:30 p.m.