Town Hires Board Member for Planning Department

Planning Board hears Hamor Lane and Kebo Street sketch plans

Carrie Jones

BAR HARBOR—The Bar Harbor Planning Board and Comprehensive Planning Committee lose a member now that Calistra Martinez is taking the place of Steve Fuller, Bar Harbor’s last assistant planner. Fuller had left earlier this year to become an editor at the Ellsworth American.

“We’re very excited to have Cali,” Town Planner Michele Gagnon said.

Martinez’ Planning Board term expires in 2025. Successors for her positions on both boards will be appointed by the Appointments Committee, composed of three town councilors and then must be approved by a vote of the council.

Martinez is a 2022 graduate of the College of the Atlantic. Martinez was one of Planning Board Chair Millard Dority’s assistants at College of the Atlantic when she was a student.

“She reads ordinance for fun,” Dority said.

“She comes to the office with her own ordinance in hand,” Gagnon agreed.

This isn’t the first time the town has hired from a board. Just this year, former Sustainability Coordinator Laura Berry served as a consultant for the town’s Task Force on Climate Change before being hired. Former Communications Coordinator Maya Caines had been a member of the Design Review Board before being hired.

Image taken off Town Hall Streams. Martinez is in the white shirt in the left-hand screen

Martinez comes to the planning department at a time when the town is dealing with a rising budget, rising housing costs, a revision of the comprehensive plan and a desire to create affordable housing. The Planning Board discussed her new position during its March 1 meeting, which lasted just under an hour.

In other business, the board discussed two subdivision sketch plans, the movement of a lot line, and briefly touched on proposed rule changes. Those proposed changes are under the main body of the article.


Christopher Maller hopes to create 10 single family lots on 19 acres at 18 Hamor Lane in Hulls Cove.

Millard Dority works with Greg Johnston, one of the people working on the project on behalf of G.F. Johnston & Associates, and who represented Maller at the meeting. The board unanimously agreed that Dority did not have a conflict of interest on this project or a subsequent project Johnston represented during the meeting.

“I’m having deja vu,” Brechlin said after Johnston’s presentation. The board had previously approved a retirement community for the same location.

Johnston said that the dissolving of that approved subdivision would come at the application’s completeness review and attorneys are looking at the best way to do that.

Dority said that this plan is a lot less impactful than the last project. There have been neighborhood meetings for the past projects and the board and staff didn’t believe they’d be needed for this new iteration. Johnston said that if that feeling changed, he’d be happy to host a neighborhood meeting.

There were no public comments about the project. The staff will schedule a site visit.  


At the same March 1 meeting, Rob Desimone had a sketch plan review for an application to create five lots on 3.66 acres at 59 Kebo Street. Four lots will be residential. There is a house on that property that once belonged to Les Brewer and that house will remain. The houses will have frontage on Kebo Street, which has water. There is no sewer line. The first lot is about 200 feet from the town sewer line. Driveways would come off Kebo Street, according to Johnston.

The staff will schedule a site visit. Brechlin said there is always a series of public hearings involved in the process with multiple opportunities to weigh in. Because of that, and because the neighborhood is sparse, the board decided the public hearings during the meeting would be sufficient and did not require a neighborhood meeting.


The board agreed with Planning Director Michele Gagnon and approved a request made by Scott Henggler and Melisa Rowland to shift a lot line at 91 Hamilton Hill. The shift involves two lots that are both less than .9 acres.


Language with a line through it (struck out) would be a potential removal. Underlined language is a potential addition.


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