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Swampscott selectmen discuss setting guidelines for harbor advisory board

SWAMPSCOTT – Selectmen want to establish specific guidelines for the make-up of the Harbor Advisory Committee.Selectman Jill Sullivan said she believes the ad hoc committee, which was established more than a decade ago, is too informal and if a vacancy occurs in the future, there need to be guidelines in place for the selectmen to make appointments.She expressed concerned that members on the committee may not adequately represent all groups with a vested interest in the future of the harbor.?There was a request from the Harbor Advisory Committee asking us (selectmen) to make an appointment to that board,” Sullivan said. “My point is the request seemed arbitrary because the committee does not have a defined set of members and there are no set roles. Other committees in town have set numbers and representatives for specific groups of stakeholders.”Sullivan said setting guidelines would make the committee more effective.Selectman Richard Malagrifa, who is the liaison between the selectmen and Harbor Advisory Committee, said the committee is comprised of a wide range of interested residents, including representatives from the Swampscott Yacht Club and Swampscott Sailing Program.?We have commercial fishermen, recreational boaters, abutters and other interested parties on the committee,” he said. “It is a good and balanced committee.”Calls to several members of the Harbor Advisory Committee were not returned Tuesday.Selectman Matthew Strauss agreed with Sullivan’s comments.?The committee is a little loose,” he said. “If it’s going to be an active committee we need to take a look at it. We have a responsibility to make sure the committee reflects the community it represents, otherwise you just have groups of people going off on their own and acting in their own interest.”Strauss said the Harbor Advisory Committee has agreed to come up with a list of recommendations, which will be presented to the selectmen in the near future.Malagrifa said he is drafting a mission statement for the Harbor Advisory Committee and he expects to present it to selectmen within the next couple of weeks.?We are charged with advising the selectmen on issues pertaining to the harbor, including, but not limited to Fishermen’s Beach, Fish House, ramp, pier and boat storage,” Malagrifa said.

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