Orleans News

ORLEANS — The heavy cruiser FY 22 General Operating Budget is being readied for final review by town meeting in May. This year, it will be accompanied by five smaller vessels, a flotilla of enterprise funds with their own budgets running mostly on user fees. That change, intended to reveal more transparently the actual cost of services such as the transfer station and the beaches, is part of a draft warrant of...

ORLEANS — The consensus of the zoning board of appeals is that Pennrose, LLC, deserves a comprehensive permit to proceed with its plan to convert the former Cape Cod 5 operations center into 62 units of affordable rental housing. A formal vote is expected April 7. Before coming to that view at the board’s March 17 meeting, members heard from some of the West Road site’s near neighbors, including residents of...

ORLEANS — The elementary school committee voted March 15 to approve a $5,505,818 budget for the fiscal year beginning in July, a 1.47 percent increase that’s well within the cap that the town asked be observed. That decision was almost overshadowed by member Josh Stewart’s response to remarks by planning board member Brian Sosner, which Sosner made as a private citizen during public comment at the select boa...

ORLEANS — The Orleans Conservation Trust is reaching out to donors to help it embrace and preserve the ecological diversity of Henson’s Cove. OCT is just 3.74 acres – and $900,000 – away from completing a 23-acre Henson’s Cove Conservation Area, a long-sought goal. The 4 Braddock’s Way parcel, with 157 feet of saltwater frontage, “was ready to develop,” OCT Executive Director Stephen O’Grady said during a to...

ORLEANS — The goalposts for scoring a state contribution toward a Snow Library building project have been moved again. Estimates are that it will be fiscal year 2027 or 2028 before the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners has the funds to initiate a new round of design grants, Snow Library facilities advisory committee chair Steve Gass told his colleagues March 3. “When I first joined the trustees...

ORLEANS — This was news, from the Orleans Record, in 1902: An automobile “came to the Hotel Shattuck and stopped over night, Friday week, and then passed down to East Orleans, opposite Mrs. Freeman’s dwelling, when it went back. Report says the party intended to go to Provincetown, but was discouraged on account of the sandy road.” Over the next century, that road and many others were paved and the region be...

ORLEANS — The Nauset Regional School Committee approved an assessment of $25,305,688 last week for the fiscal year beginning July 1, a 2.49 percent increase that “has the potential of meeting the desires of our sending selectmen and finance committees in terms of expectations for the budget,” Superintendent Tom Conrad said March 4. The budget, which includes expenditures for the middle school, high school, a...

ORLEANS — Is the Governor Prence Inn property the hill affordable housing advocates want to die on? In a joint meeting Tuesday night, the affordable housing committee and affordable housing trust board considered what advice to give the select board the following evening about acquiring the parcel for housing and other uses. By March 15, the select board must decide whether to ask this spring’s town meeting ...

ORLEANS — The town charter lays out how the town works – but is it working for everyone? Every seven years, a charter review committee takes a look at the document (readable and searchable at ecode360.com/14345881). Under the chairmanship of former selectman Jon Fuller, the current committee is determined to reach out not only to department heads, elected officials, and appointed board members but also to th...

ORLEANS — With a structural deficit no longer looming in next fiscal year’s budget, the select board considered last week what programs and services could be added back into the spending plan. A projected unused tax levy capacity of $640,000 allowed the board to develop a list of potential additions ranging from increased hours for a part-time video technician to creation of a part-time recreation coordinato...

ORLEANS — With site plan approval in hand, Pennrose, LLC, which plans to build 62 affordable housing units at the former Cape Cod 5 operations center on West Road, is moving toward a March 17 review by the zoning board of appeals. Proceeding under a “friendly” Chapter 40B zoning procedure, the developer has been reaching out to various town boards and the community for comments on its proposal, and the zonin...

Enterprise Funds To Reveal True Costs Of Services

By: Ed Maroney

ORLEANS — Town meeting will see a different budget approval process this May. Services such as the transfer station and beaches will be presented as separate, mostly self-funding enterprise funds outside the annual operating budget. The new approach is intended to show the true costs of the operations, including indirect costs, and the amount of subsidy needed from property taxes as the funds transition to full...