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Originally published in Castine Patriot, May 15, 2014
Planning board approves 117-foot pier near Mayo Point
Marks’ resignation leaves CEO, transfer station roles open

by Anne Berleant

The application by the Henry E. Erhard Living Trust for a permanent 117-foot pier located on-neck in Castine near Mayo Point gained approval by the Planning Board on May 8.

Permits have already been issued by the Department of Environmental Protection and the Army Corps of Engineers. Harbormaster Sarah Cox has also signed off on the project, indicating it will not interfere with vessel navigation or the mooring field.

“We are the last approval,” noted Chairman Douglas Wellington.

The six-foot wide pier will begin from a platform and staircase and lead to a 3.5’ x 44’ aluminum ramp and two 12’ x 30’ seasonal floats. The pier extends to the low water mark, according to the site plan submitted by Gartley & Dorsky Engineering of Camden.

At low water tide, vessels would have to go beyond the end of the pier, anyway, stated CEO Drew Marks. “And kayakers can go under it.”

No abutters have responded to notification of the planning board application and site plan review.

“The silence has been deafening,” observed Marks.

The site, listed as Lot 2 on Tax Map 27, has 1,400 feet of shore frontage. Will Gartely said the cost of constructing the pier will be $120,000.

Golf course pond, Grindle House site plans amended

Two applications already approved were again brought to the board with amended site plans.

A site plan for an irrigation pond, submitted by the Castine Golf Course and approved by the planning board on February 20, was revised to move a spillway closer to a drainage culvert.

The revised plan also calls for the golf course to clear a ditch that runs parallel to the golf cart path and maintain it afterwards. The ditch lies half on the property of abutters Pär and Gunilla Kettis, who withdrew their appeal of the planning board decision.

(The board of appeals failed to raise a quorum when it met on April 8 to hear the Kettises’ appeal; shortly afterwards, the two parties came to an agreement.)

The Castine Historical Society’s renovation and addition to the Grindle House, first approved in January 2013, has changed its parking plan, and the planning board gave a vote of approval. A handicap parking spot will be in front of the building instead of on a strip of land between the Grindle House and the Abbott School building. The reason is better drainage, with less impact on abutters Pär and Gunilla Kettis.

“We appreciate very much that this change has been made,” said Pär Kettis, noting that “the previous plan was more comprehensive.”

Pär Kettis, who is vice-chairman of the planning board, recused himself from voting on both amendments. Member Bob Friedlander recused himself from voting on approval of the permanent pier site plan application. Alternate Beverly Bishop replaced them on all three votes.

Help wanted: Drew Marks leaves town positions

After five years as transfer station attendant and slightly less as code enforcement officer, Drew Marks resigned as a town employee effective May 10.

“Town government doesn’t support full-time work,” he said, after attending his final planning board meeting on May 8. “No bitterness [on my part],” he added. “Town governments are downsizing.”

Marks will be working for Aaron’s Sales and Leasing, a national firm with an office in Ellsworth. Marks had previously worked for the rental company while living in Florida.

Planning board members gave Marks a sweet send-off after the meeting, sharing cake and farewells.

“It’s the people. That’s what I’ll miss,” said Marks. “And the cast of characters.”