On April 13, 2023, at 7:00 PM, the Wellfleet Community Forum held presentations on three topics of public interest. Proponents of Articles 40 and 41 explained the need for these bylaw changes and the Friends of the Herring River discussed the current status of the restoration project.
This was a hybrid meeting held in-person at the Adult Community Center, 715 Old Kings Highway, Wellfleet and via Zoom.
Article 40 General Bylaw Amendment – Specialized Energy Code
At the upcoming 2023 Town Meeting, voters will be asked to approve a new Opt-in Stretch Building Code for Wellfleet. This meeting will explain the Opt-in Code. In addition, the meeting will explain building codes that went into effect automatically on January 1, 2023 for all State Green Communities (90% of the State’s population). The reason for both sets of Codes is the need to address Climate damage including implementing Wellfleet’s Climate policy (Article VII, Section 39, General Bylaws). The Codes focus on increasing energy efficiency, reducing fossil fuel use, and increasing onsite electricity production. The changes are designed to lower energy bills, improve indoor air quality, and create more comfortable quieter buildings.
The presenters explained the code that came into effect on January 1, 2023, and what the Opt-in Stretch Code on the ATM warrant adds to the Building Code.
Herring River – Restoration Project Update Engagement Opportunities
The Herring River Estuary in Wellfleet and Truro was an unrestricted tidal marsh until 1909 when a dike was constructed across the mouth of the river. The blockage of tidal exchange, coupled with wetland drainage, has caused a significant decline in water quality and poor health of fish, vegetation, and wildlife. A major, collaborative project is now underway that will restore tidal flow to the estuary, and bring about numerous ecological and recreational benefits. The Friends of Herring River will utilize this portion of the forum to present the project status and answer questions, as well as share upcoming opportunities to engage in learning about and support of a healthy Herring River ecosystem.
Article 41 General Bylaw – Demolition Delay
Voters will be asked to approve Amendments to Wellfleet’s Demolition Delay Bylaw at Wellfleet’s Annual Town Meeting. Wellfleet’s current Demolition Delay Bylaw was passed at Town Meeting in 1996. Since then, many towns in Massachusetts have updated their DDBs, including Truro in 2017, whose amendments are like those that we propose. Wellfleet’s amendments will be explained, and questions will be answered.
The presentations given at the forum are available below.