Committee/Board Descriptions

Affordable Housing Committee – Works to create and maintain affordable housing stock, with a goal of having at least 10% of Orleans’ year-round occupied dwelling units being designated as affordable. Seven members.

Affordable Housing Trust Fund Board – Works to provide for the creation and preservation of affordable housing in Orleans, for the benefit of low and moderate income households and for the funding of community housing, as defined in and in accordance with the provisions of MGL Chapter 44, §55C. Nine members.

Agricultural Advisory Council – Represents the town’s agricultural community with regard to sustainable agriculture-based economic activities in Orleans. Five members.

Architectural Review Committee – Promotes the continuation of attractive building and landscaping styles, with a good blending of the old and the new. Five regular and two associate members.

Bike and Pedestrian Committee – Advocates and supports the use of bicycling as transportation and recreation and makes recommendations to encourage and facilitate safe cycling within the Town. Five regular and two associate members.

Board of Assessors – Sets policies regarding property valuation; sets tax rates; administers motor vehicle excise and boat excise; hears assessment appeals and abatements; reviews exemption applications; and administers betterments. Three members.

Board of Health - Elected board that through the Massachusetts General Laws and state regulations, is responsible for protecting the public health, safety and environment of the community accomplished through enforcement of state laws, the sanitary and environmental code, adopting reasonable local health regulations and by implementing preventive programs. Five members.

Board of Trustees for Snow Library – Elected board that acts as the governing body of Snow Library. Sets policies regarding use of the building; determines the days and hours of operation; approves, promotes and participates in functions, displays, and exhibitions held in the library; and oversees all financial matters pertaining to the library. Seven members.

Board of Water & Sewer Commissioners – Develops rules and regulations and sets policies governing the operation of the municipal water system. Oversees the watershed properties. Five regular and two associate members; with three regular and two associates appointed by the Selectmen, one regular member appointment by the Planning Board and one regular member appointed by the Board of Health.

Building Code Board of Appeals – Reviews appeals made by builders and individuals from the requirements of the Massachusetts State Building Code. Five members.

Cape Cod Commission – One person appointed by Board of Selectmen to represent the Town at the Cape Cod Commission, dealing with issues of regional significance.

Cape Cod Regional Tech High School Committee – Formulates and adopts policy for the Regional Tech School system and hires a superintendent. 1 Orleans resident to act as Representative and 1 resident to act as alternate appointed by the Town Moderator.

Charter Review Committee – Reviews the provisions of the Town of Orleans Home Rule Charter and reports any amendments deemed advisable.

Commission on Disabilities – Coordinates and carries out programs designed to meet the problems of persons with disabilities; ensures appropriate accessibility and compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act and regulations of the State and Town as related to the needs of persons with disabilities. Five regular and two associate members.

Community Preservation Committee - The Community Preservation Committee implements the requirements of the Community Preservation Act and makes recommendations to the Town Meeting for the use of monies in the Community Preservation Fund. Eligible projects involve opens space, historic preservation, community housing, and recreation that are consistent with a Community Preservation Plan based upon the Local Comprehensive Plan. Nine members; with three members appointed by the Board of Selectmen and six members appointed by specific committees.

Conservation Commission – Administers the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act (Mass. General Law Chapter 131, Section 40) and the Orleans Wetlands By-Law (Code of the Town of Orleans, Chapter 160); manages conservation properties. Seven regular and three associate members.

Council on Aging Board of Directors – Directs the Council on Aging, which is the designated agency to evaluate, promote and encourage new and existing activities and services for the older residents of the community. Seven members.

Cultural Council – Promotes the arts and humanities in the Town of Orleans; reviews Arts Grants Applications and makes grant awards, administers the Town Hall Art Gallery. Five to twenty-two members.

Dredge Advisory Committee – Develops a town-wide dredging improvement and maintenance plan to promote improved navigation, boater safety, water quality and protection of natural resources in our saltwater estuaries and freshwater ponds. Seven regular and three associate members.

Energy and Climate Action Committee – Shall identify and review renewable energy options that meet the goals and objectives established by the Board of Selectmen and that build upon work of prior committees. The Committee shall explore and analyze topics such as energy production facilities and infrastructure, efficiency and conservation measures, regional opportunities, funding sources, business costs and revenues, and public outreach and education. Five regular and two associate members.

Finance Committee – Reviews proposed budget, capital plan and warrant articles and provides residents with information and recommendations resulting from their in depth review and investigation. Nine members appointed by Town Moderator.

Fourth of July Committee – Responsible for planning, organizing, and overseeing the annual Fourth of July parade and fireworks. Seven members and three associates.

Historical Commission – Transmits the Historical Property Survey to the Massachusetts Historical Commission. Nominates properties and districts for historical designation by the State Historical Commission. Five regular and two associate members.

Human Services Advisory Committee – Reviews funding requests from human services agencies in order to determine which requests and what amounts may be presented to the Annual Town meeting for consideration. Five members.

Marine & Fresh Water Quality Committee – Studies water quality issues; devises alternatives to current practices to protect marine water resources; conducts and analyzes Town’s water quality monitoring program; operates water quality laboratory. Seven members.

Old King’s Highway Regional Historic District Commission - The purpose of the Old King’s Highway Regional Historic District Act is to promote the preservation and protection of buildings, settings and places within the boundaries of the District. Each application shall be judged on the criteria set forth in the Act under Section 10 including therein, but not limited to, historic value and significance, general design, arrangement, texture, material, color, relative size and settings. Five members with at least three members residing in the district.

Open Space Committee – Assists the Town in the acquisition and preservation of open space; revises and updates the Conservation, Recreation and Open Space Plan; prepares grant applications, assists property owners in keeping private lands preserved as open space. Five members.

Personnel Advisory Board – Serves primarily in an advisory role to the Town Administrator in accordance with the policies and procedures contained under the Town's Personnel Bylaw (Code of the Town of Orleans, Chapter 40) that covers a limited number of non-union full-time, part-time and all seasonal employee positions. Board meets infrequently on an as needed basis. Three members.

Planning Board – Oversees subdivision of land, considers long range planning and initiates changes to zoning by-laws. Five regular and two associate members.

Recreation Advisory Committee - Serves as an advisory to the Recreation Director, Town Administrator and Board of Selectmen on ways to improve and/or expand recreational programing and facilities for all age groups in the Town of Orleans. Seven regular and two associate members.

Select Board – Elected board that serves as the chief executive goal-setting and policy making agency of the Town. Among other responsibilities as outlined in the Orleans Home Rule Charter, the Board enacts rules and regulations establishing town policies, acts as the licensing authority for the Town, and appoints certain personnel, board and committee members. Five members.

Shellfish and Waterways Improvement Advisory Committee – Serves as an advisory committee to the Board of Selectmen on all matters relating to the Town’s shellfish beds. Seven regular and two associate members with priority given to those possessing varied and related backgrounds in marine science, boating, shellfishing, fishing, dealers and aquaculture both commercial and recreational.

Veterans & Memorial Day Committee – The Committee shall plan, organize and oversee ceremonies and events honoring our veterans on Memorial Day and Veterans Day. Five members.

Village Center Cultural District – Promotes fine arts and culture and fosters the endeavors of artists and arts supporters through enhanced opportunity and innovative collaboration, embracing an environment supportive to the creative economy. Five to fifteen members.

Zoning Board of Appeals – Hears applications and petitions for Special Permits and Variances and makes determinations for granting or denying same under the constraints of the Zoning By-Laws of the Town and Mass. General Laws, Chapter 40A. Hears and decides appeals from decisions of the zoning administrator. Five regular and three associate members.

Zoning Bylaw Task Force – Reviews the Orleans Zoning Bylaw on an ongoing basis to identify areas for improvement, resolve discrepancies, draft new sections as needed and expand and clarify definitions. Five regular and two ex-officio members.

rev. 12/1/20