TIME SENSITIVE: Email Your Comments re. Beach Rules by Monday, April 16, 2018 (posted 4/13/18)

At their meeting on March 28, 2018, the Beach Committee presented their first draft of “Beach Policies for the Town of Falmouth” (see below).

They will meet again on Wednesday, April 18th at 7 PM (Harbor Master’s office, Scranton Ave.) before presenting their final recommendations to the Selectman.  The Selectmen, authorized by the November Town Meeting to “regulate conduct and activities” on Town beaches, will then have two open meetings for public comment (dates to be announced).

We encourage you to comment on or add other suggestions to the Beach Committee’s list.

You may also attend the Beach Committee meeting on the 18th, email them at beach@falmouthmass.us or mail them at the Beach Department, 59 Town Hall Square, Falmouth, MA 02540.  The meeting is not televised.

Please remember that if you attend the meeting, you may speak only at the beginning of the meeting during “Public Comment”.  They will not allow you to speak during their discussion of any agenda item.

If you want to request to be placed on their agenda, you must do so at least 48 hours’ prior to their meeting (i.e. best to email by noon on Monday, April 16).

Also see the Enterprise article Friday, April 13, 2018 “Committee Seeks Input on Beach Regs”.

A few items brought up in past years by our members, but not mentioned in either the Beach Committee’s list below nor in the Enterprise article, are

1) the dangers of the use of glass bottles,

2) loud radio music able to be heard beyond 15’,

3) the use of drones or other flying objects, and

4) concerns regarding dogs defecating and urinating on the beaches,. Although “Animals and pets” are prohibited during summer months, there is no method proscribed to regulate this rule during off hours when many dog owners ignore this rule.

Lastly, the policy below regarding lifeguards’ use of discretion contradicts the Beach Committee’s earlier notion of lifeguards being focused primarily on life saving.  During busy days, can they do both?  And, if not, then what?

Beach Committee Regulations for Town of Falmouth Beaches (1st draft):

Alcohol and fires in the beach parking lots or on the beach are strictly prohibited.

Smoking on any public beach is not permitted.

Animals and pets on the beach are forbidden from May 1 to October 1, certified service dogs are permitted.

Umbrellas and tents must be firmly secured and must not obstruct the lifeguard’s view of the water.

Littering or solicitation is not permitted on the public beaches.

Lifeguards are on duty from 9:00 AM until 5:00 beginning in early June until Labor Day at most beaches.

Bathhouses are open from 9:00 AM until 4:45 PM beginning in early June until Labor Day.

Water craft, fishing and scuba diving are not permitted in the swim area during beach hours.

Parking lot gates open at 9:00 AM and are locked at 10:00 PM during the summer season.

Ball playing, kite flying, and beach games are permitted with the lifeguard’s discretion and when space allows.  Beach staff may terminate these same activities when it is deemed unsafe to the public.

No household garbage shall be discarded at any beach or beach parking lots.

Town officials, lifeguards and beach parking attendant’s directives must be followed for the benefit and safety of all.

To promote clean healthy beaches, please do not feed the wildlife.

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