Nov. 2017 Town Meeting Article 11, Indefinite Postponement (posted 9/28/17)

Below is the text of FHMNA President Howard Grosser’s presentation to the Board of Selectmen (BOS) on Monday, September 25, 2017 asking that the BOS vote to indefinitely postpone Article 11 in favor of the Selectmens’ Article 12.

Both articles will be on the warrant for the November Town Meeting:  Nov. 6-7, 2017, 7 PM, http://www.fctv.org/v3/15live. Town Meeting members may opt to vote the same as, or differently, than the BOS.

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“My name is Howard Grosser.  I am the Falmouth Heights-Maravista Neighborhood Association president and the petitioner of record for Article 11.

“As you are likely aware, this article has been given some coverage by the media.  I want you to know that some of that coverage has occasionally been accurate.

“I will not need the full 5 minutes allocated for presentations and I want to start by reading an excerpt from a letter to the editor of the Cape Cod Times signed by Kathleen Twomey of Falmouth.  She made it clear in her letter that she doesn’t think much of me and even clearer that she is not a supporter of Article 11.  She wrote that she’s been going to Falmouth’s beaches for over 50 years.  Quote: ‘I visit Falmouth beaches daily, year round.  If I find an area to be more boisterous than I like, I move to a different location, or go to a different beach, or go home.’

“I’m pleased to know that moving or going home works just fine for Ms. Twomey.  It doesn’t work for everyone.  In fact – being forced to move or leave the beach offends many people, I suggest a majority of people, and those folks have wanted something done about it for years.  Article 11 was submitted on their behalf.

“Falmouth has both bylaws and rules that govern what are and are not appropriate activities on the beaches during our beach season. That would be for approximately 7 hours a day, for approximately 8 weeks.  For over 50 years, the rules signs on the beaches read ‘no ball playing, frisbee throwing or kite flying’.   Lack of enforcement for the past 4 or 5 years aside – based on that sign, no one had the right to throw a ball or a Frisbee on the beach for a handful of weeks each year.

“This year, the Acting Beach Superintendent bypassed the Beach Committee, bypassed the Board of Selectmen, and changed those posted rules by re-wording the rules signs that now read ‘Limited ball playing, Frisbee throwing or beach games at Lifeguards discretion’.

“Many people, most of whom don’t even go to the beach, take the position that this rule change was instituted by a town employee without the standing or proper authority to do so and is in violation of our Charter. Article 11 was also submitted on behalf of these folks.

“Referring to the Article:

  1. Noise from audio devices is copied word for word from the Cape Cod Town of Dennis.
  2. Airborn devices Is also copied word for word from the town of Dennis.
  3. This was written by me and was an attempt to include the Projectiles about which the FHMNA has received complaints.
  4. Shading devices was copied from both Myrtle Beach, SC, and Long Beach Island, New Jersey, and if you do a google search, it could have been copied from dozens of beach communities up and down both the east and west coasts of the US.
  5. Commands of Beach Personnel was also copied from Dennis.

“With all of that now stated – and I know that it’s coming up shortly, I want to tell you that I prefer your Article 12 over my Article 11.

“Your #12 was first made public two weeks ago on 9/11.   Had your #12 been proposed by the 8/25 deadline that I was obligated to meet, we would not now be discussing Article 11 because it would not have been submitted.  I wish to defer to and support Article 12, the article put forth by my elected officials.

“You likely already know this, I just recently learned it during a conversation with our Town Meeting Moderator: State Law dictates that once a warrant article is executed, it cannot be withdrawn.   Absent the ability to withdraw it, and independent of the fact that I am the petitioner, I ask you to vote “indefinite postponement” on Article 11.  Please also know that the board of directors of the Falmouth Heights-Maravista Neighborhood Association has voted that you recommend “indefinite postponement” for Article 11.

“This concludes my presentation, and thank you.”

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The Selectmen had no questions and thanked Mr. Grosser for his presentation.  Selectman Su Moran stated that it was good to know that the FHMNA Board supported Mr. Grosser’s request for Indefinite Postponement.  The BOS concurred and voted for Indefinite Postponement of Article 11.

The BOS further voted to support their own Article 12.

 

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