Town of South Berwick, ME
York County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Historic District Commission of the Town of South Berwick 10-29-1980. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Historic Districts — See Ch. 84.
A. 
Business of the Commission shall be conducted in accord with Maine statutes, Town ordinances and Robert's Rules of Order.
B. 
The Commission pledges to maintain professional conduct in the review of all applications/proposals before it and all other business deliberations. All applications/proposals shall be examined equally and equitably. If for any reason an individual Commission member feels that he or she has a particular bias or conflict of interest either for or against a particular proposal, he or she shall abstain from voting on that proposal.
C. 
The term "conflict of interest" shall be construed to mean direct or indirect pecuniary benefit to any person or member of the person's immediate family (i.e., grandfather, father, wife, son, grandson) or to his employer or the employer of any member of the person's immediate family or interest sufficient to serve his own personal interest to the prejudice of the interests of those for whom the law authorized and required him to act.
D. 
Any question as to whether a member shall be disqualified from voting on a particular matter shall be decided by a majority vote of the members present except the member who is being challenged.
E. 
Those in attendance at meetings of the Commission shall be expected to be knowledgeable of Commission policies as set forth in these bylaws and abide by them.
A. 
Appointments.
(1) 
Appointments to the Commission shall be made by the Council of the Town of South Berwick.
(2) 
Appointees to the Commission shall be legal residents of the Town of South Berwick.
(3) 
The Commission shall consist of five regular members.
[Amended 3-18-2008]
(4) 
The Town Council may make such appropriations each year as may be necessary to fund the activities of the Commission.
(5) 
Three members of the Commission shall be initially appointed to serve terms of three years; three shall be initially appointed to serve terms of two years; and the remaining members of the Commission shall be appointed to serve terms of one year. All appointments thereafter made shall be of a term of three years, except in those instances in which the appointment is made to fill a vacancy in an unexpired term, in which case the appointment shall be for the remainder of the unexpired term. Persons appointed to serve in an advisory or consulting capacity shall hold office during the pleasure of the Council. The Town Council shall act within 60 days to fill a vacancy.
(6) 
A vote of the Commission quorum may direct the attention of the Council to conditions suggesting that an appointment should be terminated for just cause. Absence of a member for more than 25% of all Commission meetings, excluding on-sites, within any six-month period without a valid reason may constitute a just cause.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Subsection B, Officers and their duties, which immediately followed, was repealed 3-18-2008.
A. 
Meetings shall be held as required. The regular meeting schedule will be posted at Town Hall. Meetings may be rotated to other locations to enable better citizen support. The Secretary shall have the responsibility of notifying the members and the public if other than the normal time and place.
[Amended 3-18-2008; 2-23-2010]
B. 
All meetings in which official action is taken shall be open to the public.
C. 
A quorum necessary for the Commission to conduct meetings shall consist of three members.
[Amended 3-18-2008]
A. 
The Chairman may, with the approval of the majority of the Commission, call special work sessions for the purposes of Commission bylaws, planning sessions, proposal/application reviews and other informational work necessary.
B. 
These sessions shall be open to the public. The general public shall be barred from addressing the Commission with the following exceptions:
(1) 
In the event that the topic of the work session involves such matter in which the Commission has requested that a citizens advisory group be established to aid in the Commission's findings and deliberations; said group shall be appointed by the Commission and allowed to contribute its comments during the discussion phase of the meeting.
(2) 
Any officials or citizens who have been specifically requested by the Commission may do so.
(3) 
Remarks from other interested citizens shall be reserved for a specific time designated by the Commission.
A. 
Upon a vote of at least 3/5 of the members present and voting, the Commission may call for an executive session.
[Amended 3-18-2008]
B. 
The motion to go into executive session shall indicate the nature of the business of that session, and no other matters may be considered. No ordinances, regulations, contracts, appointments or other official action shall be finally approved at such executive session, which may be held on the following matters only:
(1) 
A vote of the Commission quorum may direct the attention of the Council to conditions suggesting that an appointment should be terminated for just cause. Absence of a member for more than 25% of all Commission meetings, excluding on-sites, within any six-month period without a valid reason may constitute such a just cause.
(2) 
The Commission shall adopt bylaws or additional operating procedures consistent with the intent of this chapter and of the state enabling legislation.
C. 
The Historic District Commission may, subject to appropriations by the Town Council or other income, employ clerical and technical assistants or consultants and may accept grants, donations or gifts of service and may hold the same for all or any of the purposes of historic preservation in the Town of South Berwick. Donations shall have the approval of the Town Council.
A. 
The officers of the Commission shall consist of the Chairman and Vice Chairman and Secretary. The Chairman, Vice Chairman and Secretary shall be regular members of the Commission and be elected annually from among its membership.
B. 
The Chairman shall preside at all meetings and hearings of the Commission. The Chairman has the authority to appoint all committees, to call all work sessions and to preside over executive sessions.
C. 
The Vice Chairman shall act for the Chairman in his/her absence.
D. 
The Secretary shall keep complete and accurate minutes and records of Commission meetings, prepare agendas of regular and special meetings with the Chairman, provide notice of meetings to the Commission members, arrange proper and legal notice of hearings and attend to all correspondence of the Commission and to other duties normally carried out by the Secretary. The Secretary shall keep a complete and accurate record of all resolutions, transactions, correspondence, findings and determinations of the Commission and shall maintain attendance records, resumes of Commission members and appointment of Commission members. All records shall be deemed public and may be inspected at reasonable times.
E. 
Certain discussions concerning employees and appointees and discussion or consideration of the employment, appointment, assignment, duties, promotion, compensation, evaluation, disciplining or resignation of public officers, appointees or employees of the Commission or of the investigation or hearing of charges or complaints against such persons, provided that any person charged, investigated or otherwise under discussion shall be permitted to be present at such executive session if he or she so desires.
F. 
Discussions or consideration of the dismissal of any employee or member.
G. 
Certain legal considerations and consultations between the Commission and its attorney concerning the legal rights and duties of the Commission, pending or contemplated litigation, settlement offers and matters where the duties of the Commission's Counsel to his or her client pursuant to the code of professional responsibility clearly conflict with the Maine Right-to-Know Law, or where premature general public knowledge would clearly place the state, municipality or other public agency or person at a substantial disadvantage.
H. 
Within the executive session it shall be the Chairman's responsibility to ensure that only that business for which the session was called shall be discussed. The Chairman shall conduct the executive session to ensure that compliance with the rules for executive session occurs.
A. 
Procedures. The standards of evaluations in § 84-11 of the local Historic District Ordinance shall be followed.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 84, Historic Districts.
B. 
Hearings.
(1) 
In addition to those required by law, the Commission may, at its discretion, hold public hearings when it decides that such hearings will be in the public interest.
(2) 
Notice of such hearings shall be published in the official newspaper of the municipality or in a newspaper of general circulation before the time of the public hearing.
(3) 
The case before the Commission shall be presented in summary by the Secretary or a designated member of the Commission and parties in interest shall have privileges of the floor.
(4) 
A record shall be kept of those speaking before the Commission.
A. 
These bylaws may be amended by a three-fifths vote of the entire membership of the Commission.
[Amended 3-18-2008]
B. 
The invalidity of any section or provision of these bylaws shall not be held to invalidate any other section or provision of these bylaws.
C. 
Any prior inconsistent provision or portion of the Commission laws of the Town of South Berwick, as amended, is hereby saved and remains in effect in the event of all or any portion of the bylaws being found to be unlawful by a court of competent jurisdiction.