Rockport Select Board members on Sept. 8 approved 10 articles to be placed on the November ballot.

Several articles deal with ordinance changes and amending the town charter. Others address infrastructure projects related to roads and the Opera House; the ballot also will include non-binding questions regarding the future of the town library.

Ordinance changes

Article 2 asks voters, “Shall an ordinance entitled: Ordinance amending the Rockport Land Use Ordinance Section 800 General Standards of performance in sub-section 801.6 Nuisances be enacted?"

The revision to the ordinance will allow events on town-owned property an extension to no later than 11 p.m., if the event is primarily to benefit one or more nonprofit organizations that serve Knox County and the event receives approval from the select board. Private events such as weddings do not qualify for the extension, according to Selectman Ken McKinley.

Article 3 reads “Shall an ordinance entitled: Ordinance amending the Rockport Land Use Section 1100 Signs and Advertising in sub-section 1103.4 Sign Standards for Districts be enacted?"

The amendment will allow a change in the 909 District (Pen Bay Medical Center and The Samoset Resort area) to increase the maximum sign area for free-standing signs to 100-square-feet, according to town officials. No free standing sign shall exceed 20-feet in height. When a universal symbol for hospital, white 'H' is used, it is not part of the overall size.

Charter amendments

Articles three through seven address changes to the town charter.

Article 4 reads “Do you approve of adding the following to Article III, Section 1 of the Rockport Town Charter, 'The Select Board may renew the own Manager's Contract, for the specific term within six months of the current contract's expiration, or at any time after it's expiration.'?"

Article 5 reads, “Do you approve adding the wording, 'municipal officers' to Article III, Section 1 paragraph 7 of the Rockport Charter so it reads 'Current or former municipal offers may be appointed Town Manager even if the Town Manager's compensation was increased during the municipal officers term in office.'?"

Article 6 asks, “Do you approve removing the words 'and is responsible to the Board of Directors” from Article VIII, Section 10, paragraph D.2 of the Rockport Town Charter so it reads 'The Library Committee, which is elected by town-wide secret ballot.'?"

According to Chairman William Chapman, the change is required because there is no “Board of Directors to report to.”

Article 7 reads, “Do you approve the adding of the words 'the Board of Assessment Review (BAR) and the Zoning Board of Appeals' to Article VIII, Section 10, paragraph D.4 of the Rockport Town Charter, so it reads 'The Planning Board, the Board of Assessment Review (BAR), and the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA), which are quasi-judicial boards…?"

Bond questions

Voters also will address infrastructure as well as bonds to pay for improvements. The total amount being sought is more than $1.7 million.

Article 8, asks, “Shall the Town of Rockport authorize the select board to undertake facility and right-of-way infrastructure projects including (some or all of the following): Public Works Garage Roof Replacement ($120,000), West Rockport Fire Station Renovations ($85,000), Mill Street Bridge Replacement ($600,000), Pascal Avenue High Sidewalk Engineering and Repairs ($200,000), Mount Pleasant Road Engineering and Repairs ($125,000), Summer Street Reconstruction and Repairs ($90,500) and the School Street Reconstruction and Drainage Repairs?"

The tax-exempt bond covering repairs in infrastructure includes repairing the roof of the public works garage, repair of the roof, electrical upgrades and expansion of the bay at West Rockport Fire Station, an engineering study and replacement of the Mill Street bridge and engineering work and repair to the base of Mount Pleasant Road. Also included on this list is repair of the "high sidewalk" on Pascal Avenue, road reconstruction on Summer Street and drainage and road reconstruction on School Street. The amount of the tax-exempt bond is $1,397,750.

Article 9 reads “Shall the Town of Rockport authorize the select board to undertake a repair and renovation project for the Rockport Opera House and to finance the project by issuing taxable general obligation bonds in a principal amount not to exceed $350,000, which bonds may be made callable?"

The taxable bond covers some needed repairs to the opera house, including a new roof, replacement of windows, exterior painting and painting and replacement of trim.

Non-binding library questions

Articles 10 and 11 are non-binding referendums concerning the future of the town's library.

The two questions that voters will be asked to answer are — first — "Do you agree the Town of Rockport should develop a plan for a new library, taking into account community input on design and budget?"

The second question asks, "Do you agree the town should primarily consider former Rockport Elementary School site at the corner of Route 1 and West Street, as the location for the new library, provided the current ball fields are preserved?"

Chapman said as a point of clarification there is no firm plan in place and the town is not asking for money at this time; the library committee is simply asking the people of Rockport their vision for the future municipal library.