WINSLOW — The Planning Board accepted proposed changes to the town’s shoreland zoning article that will align it more closely with the new state code.

The new code doesn’t use volume for measuring an expansion to a property in the shoreland area, but still uses square footage. Code Enforcement Officer Dabney Lewis said the changes might allow people to build pitched roofs. Some residents had built flat roofs before so they could put an addition on their homes, and now have trouble with them.

The changes are subject to approval by the Town Council, which would conduct two readings of them before deciding the matter, according to Town Manager Michael Heavener.

Lewis also recommended that the board accept a change in timber harvesting that would give control over to the state. The town previously used a combination of municipal and state authority.

One resident, Don Frost, attended the meeting to ask the board to look at an exemption. The code says that fences less than 6 feet high aren’t structures, and thus don’t require a permit and aren’t restricted by the setback rule.

Frost said he’s worried about fences going all the way to the lake and blocking his view.

“I pay taxes on my view,” he said.

While some board members agreed with Frost, Mark Ward said some people might build a fence for privacy or to block views of messy yards.

“You want a view; maybe they don’t want to see their neighbors,” he said.

Board Chairman Elery Keene proposed passing the proposed changes, as the fence exemption wasn’t included in them, and getting input from more people to change that part of the article later on. A motion was made and passed, 5-0.

The board also discussed mobile and modular homes. Heavener asked the board to look into allowing mobiles homes in the conservation district, which previously was part of the rural district, which does allow mobile homes.

Because of restrictions over the years, Winslow now has only one district that allows mobile homes.

Keene said not putting a provision for mobile homes in the conservation district was probably an oversight by the board, and he couldn’t remember any discussion on the topic.

Board members discussed further how they couldn’t allow mobile homes everywhere in town.

“If you put a $30,000 mobile home next to a $300,000 home, the value of the mobile home goes up and the value of the $300,000 home goes down,” board member Andrew Vear said. “We need to have some place to put them, but they don’t belong everywhere.”

The board voted to have Lewis write draft definitions for manufactured, mobile and modular homes to update the town code, and it plans to revisit the question of the conservation district once the definitions are finished.

Madeline St. Amour — 861-9239

[email protected]

Twitter: @madelinestamour


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