Email to the Council 3/14/2014

Off-season beach hours

Dear Councilors,

I am writing again about the off-season beach hours that you are considering putting in place. I would also ask you to PLEASE just take a few minutes to look at the photo album that I have uploaded to my Google + account (you do not have to join Google + to look at it).  I spent hours this week going through my photos and have accumulated 7 years worth of pictures of Pine Point Beach in the off season.  The pictures are labeled by year, month and time and I hope that they demonstrate to you the fact that the beach in the off season is so empty!  There are very few people there and it is easy to avoid each other if you want to.

This is the link:
https://plus.google.com/photos/112448941683698855678/albums/5990682852098624833

As a personal example of why the winter hours are so problematic for someone like me, in the off season I go to the beach with my dog:

-on one of my three days off per week.

-when the weather is good

-when the tide is low in the late morning or early afternoon

-when my busy schedule allows

Which means, I am lucky to get there once every other week.  If, in addition, you add unnecessary restrictions between the hours of 11 – 2, I’ll be lucky to get there once a month!  It will be very hard to sit at home between 11 – 2 and miss my beach time, knowing all the while that the beach is almost completely empty.  Please, please, please look at these pictures with an open mind and reconsider the off season restrictions!

Thank you very much,

Catherine Rogers

Sent to:

Councilor Blaise: No response

Councilor Benedict: Response 3/14/2014

Catherine,I read your email and am confused.You,ve only shown a few pics during our purposed on leash hours for the benefit of our taxpayers. I dont understand why your point.Were only given the public 3 hours a day.Help me .

Jim Benedict

My response: 3/14/2014

Councilor Benedict,

Thank you for looking at the pictures and asking about the different times that the pictures are taken.  I included pictures from many different times of day, from almost all months of the “off-season” (apparently even I don’t go to the beach in February) to show you and the rest of the councilors that in my experience, on Pine Point Beach, any time that I have been there in the off season, no matter what time of day it is, the beach has been practically deserted.  There has never been a time that it has been difficult for me to avoid other people who don’t want my dog near them and for other people to avoid me if they want. 

The point of my pictures is to show you the wide expanse of beach with a few figures here and there, no matter what time of day it is and what day of the year.  The point of my pictures is that requiring leashes in the off season is not necessary.  You aren’t giving “the taxpayers” (of which I am one) just three hours of the day.  What you want to do is give a very small percentage of people in this town three hours in the middle of the day, when the sun is high and the temperature is at its warmest.  That makes a huge difference in the winter especially when the days are short.  You want to do this on all the beaches in town, every single day, all year round, even when the beaches are practically deserted.  That is not fair. 

As much as you may not like me, or think I am a pest, I am also a taxpayer in this town.  And I love to take my dog for a run on the beach when the tide is low and the weather is decent, when I have the day off and I don’t have too much work to do – no matter what time of day it is.  I hope you and the rest of the councilors will reconsider the winter restrictions.

Thank you,
Catherine

Councilor Benedict: Response 3/15/2014

The taxpayers are entitled to some time also. There are 12 hours available and like the vote the dogs are getting 75 per cent of the time and taxpayers are getting 25 per cent. Compromise is what you forget. Were simply trying to satisfy as many people as possible Because you don’t go in February should we close the beach to dogs and give the people 100 per cent of the time. Probably not.Meeting on Wed. Nite- See you there.

Jim Benedict

My response 3/15/2014

Are the DOGS getting 75% of the time in the summer too? If not, that should also be included in your math.And I would also like to remind you that I AM a taxpayer.  I’m a little confused why you are implying that I am not.  I own my house and pay taxes on it. I’m a business owner in this town and pay annual taxes on my business property as well.  My property may not be at the beach, but my taxes count as much as anyone elses.

Thanks,

Catherine

Councilor Benedict: Response 3/15/2014

If you read the paper it will tell you ALL about it. I dont know why you feel I don’t like you. You have no basis for that accusation. Come say Hi at the meeting.

Jim

Councilor Caterina: Response 3/14/2014

Hi, Catherine – Thank you for the pictures. I spend many hours in winter walking on the beaches myself and,depending on the weather, they may or may not be populated by many folks. Speaking for myself, I am supportive of time offseason that requires dogs to be leashed. This is a people issue. We have had folks ask for this time. It was proposed as part of the fair and balanced beach use requested by all parties. Does it need to be exactly these hours? Maybe not. However, we do need to add on leash hours in winter.

We will be holding hearings on the proposed ordinance once the language is refined.  I encourage you to speak at that time.

Thank you for contacting us.

Best,

JMC

Jean-Marie Caterina

Scarborough Town Council

Councilor Donovan: No response

Councilor Holbrook: No response

Councilor St. Clair: No response

Councilor Sullivan: No response

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