Harwich News

Commission Approves Building Removal On Handler Property

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The outbuilding on the former Handler’s Auto Parts property sits on the 50-foot no-build buffer zone line established under wetland protection laws. While the conservation commission last week approved its removal, the foundation slabs will remain to allow potential future development. Jeff Handler was before the commission to provide an update of the remediation project taking place on the 3.14-acre...

Selectmen Push For 2 Percent Budget Increase In FY22

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — Having just put a FY21 budget in place, selectmen on Monday began shaping the message for funding the next fiscal year’s spending plan. The message contained in the draft proposal stated the desire to stay within the spending limits of Proposition 2½, but that was not strong enough for members of the board. “Selectmen desire a budget that is within the Proposition 2½ limits without the need for a gen...

Remediation Work Winding Down At Handler Auto Parts Site

By: William F. Galvin

Still No Plans For Future Development  HARWICH — The land remediation work on the 3.14-acre Handler Auto Parts site along Route 28 in Harwich Port is nearing completion, but there remains no plan for the redevelopment of the land, which commands sweeping views of Allen Harbor and its marsh. Jeff Handler said this week no decisions have been made on future plans for development of the property, which is zone...

Doane Offers Proposal To Improve Grounds At Crowell Barn

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The grounds around the A. Elmer Crowell barn at Brooks Academy are looking shabby, Harwich Center resident Paul Doane told members of the Brooks Academy Museum committee last week. Doane, who volunteers at the historic barn where the renowned decoy carver did his work, said the trees lost during last year’s tornado and the drought this area experienced over the summer have created dire landscape cond...

Meet Fritz, Harwich Police’s New Vape Dog

By: Kat Szmit

HARWICH – The Harwich Police Department has a new member, and he’s here to teach kids in the Monomoy School District not to vape. If he gets a few treats in the process, that’s all the better. Fritz isn’t your average member of the force. Unlike his bipedal fellow officers, Fritz is an 18-month-old German shorthaired pointer and it’s his job, quite literally, to sniff out e-cigarettes and vaporizers on school ...

Harwich OK's Plastic Bottle Ban

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The more than 300 voters who turned out for the annual town meeting on Saturday spoke in strong support of protecting the environment, putting in place a ban on the sale of commercial single-use plastic water bottles and approving a resolution supporting the adoption of a town policy on climate change. Resident Patrick Otton put forward the petitioned article seeking to create a bylaw making it unlaw...

Harwich Town Meeting Finally Approves Operating Budgets

By: William F. Galvin

Special District, Multi-family Update OK'd HARWICH — It was long awaited, but residents finally got the opportunity to act on the annual town meeting warrant in an outdoor setting on Saturday. Five operating budgets were approved totaling $68, 957,862, a 1.4 percent decrease from last year's budget. Voters also approved unanimously a zoning amendment that creates a West Harwich Special District with a focus...

Commission Looks To Increase Demolition Delay To 18 Months

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — Town officials have been focusing on preservation of the historic character of the community over the past couple of years. The approval of the West Harwich Special District zoning amendment in the annual town meeting on Saturday was one step, and the historic district and historical commission is considering additional protective measures. The commission is working on extending the period of the his...

Harwich Chamber Recognizes Outstanding Community Contributions

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH —The chamber of commerce has issued its annual series of awards to local businesses and community members making outstanding contributions to the town and the chamber. The awards were announced during the chamber’s annual meeting, which was held virtually this year. Executive Director Cyndi Williams said after the announcements that the awards were presented in person following social distancing protoc...

Harwich Bans Plastic Bottles, OK West Harwich District

By: Staff Reports

HARWICH - At Saturday's annual town meeting, voters joined other Cape towns in approving a ban on the sale of single-use plastic bottles under one gallon. The assembly also approved a zoning amendment that puts in place regulations for the West Harwich District of Critical Planning Concern. The article drew limited debate, but another zoning amendment expanding and relaxing some provisions for multifamily dwel...

Selectmen Back County Training Facility At Fire Headquarters

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The public safety facilities on Sisson Road may be the new location for the Barnstable County live burn training facility. Selectmen on Monday night endorsed Fire Chief David LeBlanc collaborating with the county in establishing the training center at the rear of the fire department headquarters. In a memorandum to selectmen, LeBlanc said the county’s center for public safety training is in a stat...

Brooks Library 'Grab and Go' Will Provide A Sense Of Normalcy

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The public will have greater access to Brooks Free Library beginning next week. Changes underway include the ability for patrons to browse inside the historic library as well as several physical changes. Alcoves have been turned into more secure offices for staff and Plexiglas shields installed to separate workers from the public in compliance with COVID-19 protective measures. The COVID-19 pandem...