WINDHAM — The Town Council Tuesday night approved an ordinance designed to help police work with owners of properties they are repeatedly called to for disturbances, such as loud music, fighting and drug and alcohol fueled offenses.

Police Chief Kevin Schofield proposed the disorderly property ordinance in August at the council’s request. Its purpose, he wrote in a memo, is “to create a method to manage residential properties where disruptive activities occur and the owner of such properties are not responsive to proactively managing the problem.”

Schofield

On Nov. 12, Interim Town Manager Don Gerrish said that the new ordinance “gives the town and the police some ability when there are goings on and repeated calls to houses or businesses that we can follow up and work with the owners trying to eliminate the problems.”

Disorderly activities are defined in the ordinance as those that “would unreasonably disturb the community,” including loud music, excessive noise, altercations such as fighting and drug or alcohol related offenses.

If a property accumulates two disorderly events in 180 days, it is classified as a disorderly property, and the owner is subject to a remediation process, which includes meeting with the police chief and signing a remediation agreement.

The council made some edits to the proposed ordinance at an October meeting and on Tuesday unanimously voted to approve the ordinance.

“This is going to be good for us,” Town Council Chairman Jarrod Maxfield said.

Also on Tuesday night, the council voted to request that the Maine Department of Transportation review the speed limits on William Knight and Gambo roads, specifically to consider lowering the speed limits. William Knight’s speed limit is 45 mph, while Gambo’s is 35 mph.

Patrol Capt. William Andrew said at the meeting that the police have received multiple complaints from residents about speeding in these locations.

Councilors also unanimously voted to refer proposed changes to the Land Use Ordinance regarding private roads to the Planning Board for review and recommendation.

At a Town Council meeting on Nov. 7, new councilors David Douglass and Nick Kalogerakis and incumbent Maxfield were sworn in.

The council also appointed representatives to various committees, although the number of committees each councilor was appointed to varied. Councilor Dave Nadeau was appointed to four different committees while Councilor Clayton Haskell was not appointed to any.

Kalogerakis thanked the town for electing him, saying, “I’m ready to serve the people.”

Councilor Tim Nangle thanked former Councilors Donna Chapman and Bob Muir, who were defeated at the polls Nov. 5 by Kalogerakis and Douglass.

“(Chapman and Muir) spent a lot of time on this council. They clearly were dedicated to this town, and I’d just like to thank them for their dedication,” Nangle said.

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