Boothbay Harbor selectmen have been receiving numerous questions and concerns from the public on COVID-19 safety protocol and social distancing. Selectman Wendy Wolf, a retired physician, addressed some of those concerns April 27.
“I'm delighted that so many of our essential providers, folks at Hannaford and others, have been trying to follow safety practices such as many of them wearing masks as they're checking us out of the grocery and they're still ... making sure the crowd size is appropriate … But we've received some questions (from the public) about people wearing masks ...”
Wolf said there seems to be a misunderstanding about the need to wear masks as a member of the public accessing essential services such as grocery stores and gas stations: The masks are for protecting others and not necessarily oneself. “This is not a political thing to wear a mask … We are trying to protect those people who are working from germs or potential COVID infection that we might be unaware that we have … It is respecting those people, it is courteous to those people and frankly it's an imperative thing that we should do to help protect them from getting sick …”
Wolf said when restrictions are lifted, it will not be a day of celebration or a social event, and social distancing will continue. “People need to start realizing that these restrictions are going to be with us for a while even if the shelter-in-place gets lifted … It's more than a casual recommendation or 'be helpful and do this.’ This is important to take care of people in our community who are vulnerable … We hope that people would do this voluntarily and not have to make us think about a more forceful action. I think people in the community want to do the right thing.”
Other business, announcements
After close to an hour in executive session, selectmen granted Town Manager Julia Latter the authority to adjust renters’ payments on town-owned property. In an email, Latter said this would allow her to work with town-owned property renters submitting requests to push payment back to a deadline of June 26.
Selectmen approved a liquor license renewal for Whale’s Tale and new victualer licenses for Harborage Inn and Brisetto’s Second Cup.
Latter announced Stephanie Jones has started at Boothbay Harbor Police Department as a reserve officer after completing training. “She's been working very hard and appears to be a good fit for our team of officers.”
Selectman Tricia Warren announced the Broadband Committee will meet via Zoom at 6:30 p.m. May 4 to discuss the recently acquired Casco Bay Advisors broadband services report for Boothbay and Boothbay Harbor.