October 6, 2008

Brewer Reschedules Meeting on Open Burning


BREWER - A meeting to discuss open burning, originally scheduled for last Tuesday, was rescheduled for the morning of Oct. 7 and then rescheduled again to Oct. 8 in order for the meeting to be held at night, City Clerk Pam Ryan said.

The informational workshop and public hearing now are set for 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at City Hall to "hear input from staff and the public on revisions to the proposed ordinance amendment" concerning open burning.

"This is not a council meeting," Ryan said. "This is just a public workshop. There will be no action taken."

A proposed amendment to the open burning rules, presented at the September council meeting, would ban recreational backyard fires unless food was being cooked.

Councilors at that meeting heard opposition to the proposal but placed the item on the Oct. 14 regular meeting agenda, which is when it will be considered for adoption.

To prepare for that meeting, the informational workshop was planned to get public comment on possible revisions to the amendment, Ryan said.

The amendment includes new setbacks, backyard fire pit rules and wording to define "nuisance."

The use of outdoor grills or fireplaces would be restricted to "cooking and preparing food" only under the amendment as written. It would eliminate the words "recreational purposes."

The planned setback for permitted burns, suggested by residents, would require 100 feet between a fire and a public way or property line.

The proposed amendment's wording would add "public alarm" as another reason for permits to be revoked and would define a nuisance as "preventing the enjoyment of one's property."

For those who can't make the meeting, "written comments will be taken up until the day of the workshop," Ryan said.

Comments can be dropped off at City Hall until 4 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 8, or can be mailed to the City Clerk, 80 North Main St., Brewer 04412.

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