Orleans News

ORLEANS — The town’s affordable housing trust entered “final negotiations” with Cape Abilities to purchase outright a 1.25-acre property at 107 Main St. that could be developed as affordable rental apartments, trust chairman Alan McClennen confirmed last week. The proposed purchase was on the agenda of the board of selectmen, whose approval is required, in an executive session held last night (April 29). At th...

ORLEANS —  The pandemic, which has altered familiar patterns at transfer stations in Chatham, Harwich, Orleans, and elsewhere, may have prompted dumping in the wilds of the Cape Cod National Seashore. Last week, the Seashore reported construction materials dumped near Doane Rock in Eastham and household trash found at Great Island in Wellfleet. “This is a challenging time for everyone, including the nationa...

ORLEANS — April is proving to be the cruelest month when it comes to town finances. Department heads were asked to reduce spending through June 30, the end of the fiscal year, to ensure a reserve of about half a million dollars to balance an anticipated drop in revenues from local receipts related to the effects of the pandemic. In a letter to finance committee chairman Lynn Bruneau, Finance Director Cathy ...

For weeks, people across the Cape have been hunkered down, ideally at home, as they take personal measures toward eradicating a global pandemic. But that isolation, sudden in many cases, can come with its own set of issues, which is why taking care of one’s mental health is just as important as taking care of one’s physical health. “The mental affects the physical,” said Deborah Ennis, a licensed mental health...

ORLEANS — The new normal for learning in Massachusetts—virtual lessons via the internet—will likely become the regular normal next month. “We’re all thinking we will not be coming back in on May 4,” Nauset Superintendent Tom Conrad told a virtual meeting of the regional school committee April 9. His reference was to his fellow Cape superintendents, who are “doing some planning behind the scenes. One of the p...

Antique Orleans Barn Moved

By: Ed Maroney

Monday’s journey of the old Hanvey barn from Great Oak Road began with suspending the roof, before a trailer made a tight turn  and just got by the fence of neighbor Vince Ollivier. “It’s like losing an old friend who moves away,” said Ollivier, who grew up on the property across from the barn. “The only time you see him is when you visit.” Gregg LeStage, the barn’s new ow...

ORLEANS – Sunshine and the wide-open expanses of the Cape’s beaches are inviting house-bound social distancers to slip on their sandals and catch a breath of fresh air. What else they might catch if they congregate too closely along the shore is cause for concern. Yarmouth has closed its beaches, Falmouth has chained off its beach parking lots, and the governor has shut down the access road and parking lot at Sou...

ORLEANS — Dogs may be allowed to bring their owners to the sands of Skaket Beach and Rock Harbor until Memorial Day Weekend for the first time in five years. Acting as park commissioners, the board of selectmen was to vote last night (April 1) on a proposal by Natural Resources Manager Nate Sears to allow dogs at those locations from Labor Day through the Friday before Memorial Day while maintaining the April ...

ORLEANS — Gregg LeStage’s great-grandfather burned down a barn on his Barley Neck Road property in 1956 because it blocked his view of the water. When his great-grandson bought the place for his own family in 2001, he tore down another barn that was in poor condition and a potential danger for his young daughters. “At that time in my life, it was way too expensive to repair,” LeStage said last week. “From that...

If Cape Cod followed Vermont’s example, all our worries about postponing town meeting would be unnecessary. Up in the Green Mountain State, almost all communities hold their annual budget-setting sessions on Town Meeting Day, the first Tuesday of March. It’s a state holiday. Vermont’s work is done for this year, but Massachusetts towns have been tripped up in the middle of the process by a pandemic disease tha...

New Focus On Veterans Memorials At Academy Place

By: Ed Maroney

ORLEANS — Townspeople remember the service of their military members every Memorial Day and Veterans Day at Academy Place, sometimes in such numbers that they spill out of the triangular piece of land at Route 28 and Main Street. Now there’s a plan to reorganize the monuments that recognize those who served in the nation’s conflicts and create a space well suited for reflection on their sacrifices. Memorial an...

ORLEANS — There’s something for everyone in the community preservation committee’s recommendations for spending on community housing, historical preservation, open space, and recreation. What there’s not is everything for everybody. With almost 20 requests for supporting totaling well above $2 million, the committee had a tough job getting the number down to its expected revenue for the fiscal year beginning J...