At a special Town Meeting called on
a showery June 27th, 1974 the voters who came adopted the
At that meeting, over a quarter century ago, the town appeared ready to join the new statewide movement to address the carelessness of the past that threatened our beautiful waterfronts and fragile wetlands.
The State Department of Environmental Protection had recommended a well-thought-out plan to the Legislature who made it law.
Not only did the Committee in Whitefield adopt the legislation, they doubled the distance recommended by the state. More was better ! We all agreed . This will take care of our problems. No one stopped to notice the total amount of land set aside for this "extra protection".
Fast forward 28 years ..... to a world of explosive re-evaluation, a world of "Tree Growth" style of rewarding conservation, a world where our shoreland is valued, used and abused by hunters, fishermen, 4 wheelers, snowmobiles, birders and naturalists.
It is probably important to note that we also have a personal interest in this matter as shoreland owners who would like to build a summer cabin on our land by the river.
Many of those shoreland taxpayers from 1974 are beginning to question the wisdom of that earlier notion that more is better. They are wondering why their neighbors in Pittston, Alna, Jefferson, Somerville, Chelsea, Windsor and Augusta should have the use of land that is prohibited over the town line here in Whitefield.
Is it time to revisit these ideas? Apparently so, as the lawmakers have said that if you are going to exceed the State's rules you must have an updated Comprehensive Plan that reflects the current thinking of the townspeople.