Monday, July 21, 2008

City of Portland

Volunteer Opportunities

Board and Commissions

Board of Appeals – 3 positions

Responsibilities: Assists in the administration of the City’s Zoning ordinance by reviewing decisions of the Building Inspector, approving conditional uses and granting variances. The Board functions in a quasi-judicial capacity and members must be able to hold public hearings, make findings of fact and conclusions of law based upon applicable state and local zoning laws, and issue written decisions setting forth their findings and conclusions.

Board of Assessment Review – 2 positions

Responsibilities: The Board has power to grant property tax abatements pursuant to state law and to determine the tax exempt status of real and personal property. It functions in a quasi- judicial capacity and members must be able to hold public hearings, make findings of fact and conclusions of law in accordance with state law, and issue written decisions setting forth their findings and conclusions.

Qualifications: Members need the background necessary to be able to determine the value of real and personal property. Members should be familiar with the several geographical areas of the City, e.g. the waterfront, downtown, Munjoy Hill, Deering, etc.

Civil Service Commission – 2 positions

The Employment Subcommittee has three Commissioners and one alternate. The Employment Subcommittee approves written examinations for police and fire Civil Service testing and other elements of the testing process such as fitness and medical and job suitability exams, participates in oral interviews with candidates, and may hold hearings on discipline cases.

Qualifications: A resident of Portland and a person of good moral character. Although a familiarity with employment practices and the legal process would be helpful, they are not required. What is necessary is a desire to be involved in a critical but background role, a capacity for objective judgments, and good communication skills.

Disqualifications: Anyone who is or has been a City employee or City Councilor or anyone who is a relative of a present member of the Police or Fire departments.

Downtown Portland Corporation – 6 positions

Responsibilities: Institute economic development programs in the Portland area to insure compliance to City’s goals, objectives and requirements. Review loan and underwriting applications for financing programs.

Qualifications: Some or all of the following experience is required: commercial financing, small business operations, commercial real estate, marketing, and have an interest or be active in economic development. Residency in Portland not required.

Fair Hearing Officer – 2 positions

Responsibilities: Review any dissatisfaction stemming from any action concerning applicants for general assistance. Decisions must be in accordance with applicable State Laws and City Ordinances. The Fair Hearing Officer is required to render a written decision regarding the outcome of a hearing within five working days.

Qualifications: Ability to conduct hearings with a five-day notice.

Ability to be fair, impartial, unbiased, and have no personal or financial interest, direct or indirect, in the hearing or its outcome. The Fair Hearing Officer is scheduled to attend hearings on an as-needed basis.

Friends of the Parks – 2 positions

This Commission serves as an advisory group to help promote parks and recreation in the City. Meets monthly with Director of Public Services / Parks and Open Space Manager to review projects, proposals and receive citizen input to provide recommendations to the Director of Public Services and the City Council.

Harbor Commission – 1 position

Responsibilities: Reviews construction plans. Protects the rights of harbor users.

Qualifications: Familiarity with Portland Harbor and Casco Bay and an interest in its growth. Capacity to become familiar with issues such as vessel access rights; coastal zone management conflicts and other aspects of marine law and marine engineering. Fair and objective reasoning skills. Good communication skills.

Historic Preservation – 2 positions

Responsibilities: The Historic Preservation Board has jurisdiction to review and approve applications for a Certificate of Appropriateness for exterior alterations, site improvements and new construction affecting Portland’s designated landmarks, buildings and sites within historic districts and historic landscape districts. The Board also makes recommendations to the Planning Board and City Council concerning amendments to the historic preservation ordinance and the designation of additional landmarks, historic districts, and historic landscape districts.

Qualifications: Members shall have demonstrated interest, knowledge, ability, experience, or expertise in restoration, rehabilitation, or neighborhood conservation or revitalization and shall be residents of the City of Portland.

Terms: Members are appointed for terms of 3 years and may serve a maximum of three consecutive terms.

Meetings: The Historic Preservation Board meets on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month at 5:00.

Landbank – 2 positions

The Land Bank Commission is responsible for identifying and protecting open space resources within the City of Portland. The Commission seeks to preserve a balance between development and conservation of open space important for wildlife, ecological, environmental, scenic or outdoor recreational values. The Commission responsibilities include: working for the acquisition and conservation of open space within the City; recommending to the City Council on a priority basis acquisition or conservation of significant properties; and the pursuit of gifts and funds from private and public sources for the acquisition of open space as approved by the City Council. The Commission has developed an inventory of open space resources within the City. It is engaged in an ongoing effort to proactively protect properties from development through easement, deed restriction, or acquisition.

Responsibilities: Pursue funding resources for the acquisition of open space; create an inventory of

open space property in the city and make recommendations for the protection and/or acquisition of open space that is environmentally significant.

Meets on the second Wednesday of each month at 5:00 P.M.

Portland Fish Exchange A – 2 position

Portland Fish Exchange B – 1 position

Portland Fish Exchange C – 1 position

Additional information is available in the City Clerk’s office, on the City’s website at or at 874-8677. Deadline for submission is August 1, 2008. Please send a resume and cover letter to Appointments Committee Chairman, c/o Linda C. Cohen, City Clerk, 389 Congress Street, Portland ME 04101 or Applicants will be contacted for interviews.

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