Meetings are held remotely. Go to provincetown-ma.gov and click on the meeting you want to watch.
Thursday, Aug. 13
- Board of Health, 4 p.m.
- Planning Board, 6 p.m.
Tuesday, Aug. 18
- Conservation Commission, 6 p.m.
Thursday, Aug. 20
- Water & Sewer board, 2 p.m.
As of Aug. 11, Provincetown had zero active cases of Covid-19, 31 cases considered recovered, and one death.
No Go for Nonresident Task Force
At least a dozen part-time resident taxpayers called the select board on Aug. 10 in support of an idea proposed by board member Louise Venden to create a Resident/Nonresident Task Force. But when it came time for the board to vote, Venden did not even receive a second to her motion, and the idea died.
There has been pressure for representation in recent years from members of the Part-Time Resident Taxpayers Association, who say that second-home owners pay over 80 percent of the property taxes in town but have no say in how the town operates.
Venden said she wanted to find a way for them to have a voice without allowing them to vote at town meeting. And, she added, this is not just about wealthy property owners; it is about the nonresidents who are not U.S. citizens and yet work as essential employees, she said.
Low-tide Seating for Sal’s
Sal’s Place received a temporary license on Aug. 10 to expand its outdoor seating on the intertidal beach to help the owner comply with the social distancing restrictions imposed on restaurants during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The select board voted 4-1 (with Chair David Abramson opposed) to grant the temporary license so that the historic West End restaurant can place 44 seats on the bayside beach behind the property, pending a drawing of the seating plan, which was not provided at the hearing. The seating exceeds the bounds of the property, said Acting Town Manager David Gardner.
The select board granted the license after hearing from a long list of Sal’s supporters and wading through about 70 letters of support. The restaurant has been successful at leveraging community support when facing town regulatory boards.
A few objected to extending the seating, notably Building Commissioner Anne Howard, who recommended against granting the license because Sal’s “has not demonstrated a desire to follow the Covid-19 guidelines,” she wrote. “This has been made evident on several visits,” where Howard noted “non-masking, serving of alcohol to non-dining patrons, use of private property for queuing of patrons without property owners’ consent, reduction of social distancing of tables in the interior dining area.” Howard concluded, “Granting this extraordinary use of flowed tidelands, although a restaurant is considered a facility of public accommodation according to Chap. 91, would, based on historic practice by this applicant, in my opinion, not realize a benefit outweighing any adverse issues.”
Board member John Golden said if a restaurant can “convince people to sit where water is coming under the table, more power to you.”
Interim Town Manager Begins
The select board on Aug. 10 signed a contract hiring Charles Sumner as interim town manager for the next six months, or less if a town manager is hired before that.
Sumner, the former town administrator of Brewster for 29 years, will earn $80 an hour for an average of 32 hours per week. Sumner will be in town hall from Monday through Thursday, according to the contract. He was to start on Wednesday, Aug. 12.
He replaces Robin Craver, who resigned just before the end of her probationary six-month period. Sumner will work while the town begins another search process. —K.C. Myers