The good old days...
Sears Island preservationists prevail at meeting
Monday, June 26, 2006 - Bangor Daily News by Tom Groening
BELFAST - Those wanting to preserve Sears Island in a mostly natural state were out in force on Saturday at a daylong information gathering session, and their vision for the state-owned island dominated discussions.
The facilitated meeting at the University of Maine Hutchinson Center drew more than 60 participants. It is the first of two sessions in which public input is being gathered by a steering committee to guide a planning process for the 941-acre island, linked to the mainland in Searsport by a causeway. ... The Saturday session used a process that allowed participants to brainstorm ideas for an agenda and then meet in small groups to flesh them out.
"Sue Inches of the State Planning Office and Jonathan Reitman read the summaries of the small group sessions and created a list of the dominant topics:
- Gathering more information on Mack Point's capacity, shipping trends, and the value of nonport development.
- Restoring the natural habitat on the island and returning a tidal flow through the causeway.
- Finding a balance between conservation and compatible economic development and fisheries.
- Creating a people- and nature-friendly ecotourism experience on the island.
- The need for coordinated management of current and future island uses.
- Drawing up principles to guide development.
- Keeping the steering committee process open and transparent."
How did things get so far off track?