Community Newsletter

Issue #348

In this Issue:
Photo: Russ Lunt

Upcoming City Council Meetings

Tuesday, November 21 at 6:30 PM - City Council Workshop
Tuesday, November 28 at 6:30 PM - City Council Meeting

See the City Calendar for all scheduled City Council and board meetings + locations/links to participate. All agendas and packet material can be found on BoardDocsThis material will be posted by 4:30 PM on Thursday the week prior to the scheduled meeting. 

The public may participate in most Council meetings in person only, but hybrid meetings are sometimes scheduled. Check
 BoardDocs for more info.

City Holiday Schedule

Thanksgiving Hours
  • City Hall + All Offices: CLOSED Thurs, 11/23 & Fri, 11/24
  • Bus: NO SERVICE Thurs, 11/23. Regular service Fri, 11/24 - Sun, 11/26
  • Community Center: CLOSED Thurs, 11/23 & Fri, 11/24
  • Library: CLOSED Thurs, 11/23 & Fri, 11/24
  • Transfer Facility: CLOSED Thurs, 11/23 & Fri, 11/24 and OPEN regular hours Sat, 11/25 & Sun, 11/26
  • Trash/Recycling Collection: Thursday’s route will be collected on Friday, 11/24; Friday’s route will be collected on Saturday, 11/25

For Christmas and New Years hours, click here.

Winter Parking Ban Starts Dec. 1

No parking is allowed on any City street between 12 AM and 6 AM December 1-April 1. Public parking lots at Waterman Drive (between E St. and C St.), the Boat Launch at Bug Light Park, and the Willard Beach parking lot on Willow St. are available for City residents and their guests to temporarily park during the winter parking ban. Your cooperation helps ensure that public works crews can quickly respond to overnight icing and snow events to keep our streets safe. Anyone who parks on a street overnight should expect to be ticketed and/or towed.

Information for Dog Owners

Dog Licensing: Dog licensing for the 2024 year has begun! All dogs must be licensed per state law. Dog licenses expire annually on December 31. Licenses can be renewed online. Click here for information and the link to renew online.

Leashing Rules: Dogs are to be on leash when walking on City sidewalks, roads, and parking lots, by City ordinance. If you have questions about where your dog is allowed to be off leash and under voice control, click here

Last Chance! Comp Plan Vision & Goals Questionnaire Closes Nov. 30


November 30, 2023 is the last day to submit comments on the City’s draft Comprehensive Plan Vision and Goals. After this date, members of the public are encouraged to attend upcoming Comprehensive Plan Committee meetings, where the committee will discuss the results of the feedback, hear public comment, and finalize the Vision and Goals statements.
Join Comprehensive Plan Committee meetings in person or watch via the livestream link on the Comp Plan website 
homepage. Upcoming meetings:

Reminders from Age Friendly South Portland


Here are some reminders from Age Friendly South Portland, the ad-hoc committee working to ensure that the City’s older adult residents have access to services and infrastructure enabling them to live safely and with dignity as they age:

  • SoPo Age Friendly Rides - The City invites income-eligible seniors age 65+ and adults with visual impairments to apply for this new program, which provides free rides to Portland-area health appointments (doctor and dentist visits, eye exams, and therapy sessions) free of charge. Call the South Portland General Assistance office to apply at (207) 767-7617. Learn more.
  • Sand Buckets for Seniors - Seniors age 65+ and residents with mobility challenges can receive a 5-gallon bucket of sand/salt mix delivered to their home for winter steps and walkway maintenance. To order a sand bucket, please call the Public Works office at (207) 767-7635 or email publicworks@southportland.org. Learn more.
  • Volunteer Shovelers Needed - Age Friendly South Portland is seeking volunteer shovelers to clear walkways for seniors in need of help this winter. This is a great opportunity to make a big difference in the life of a neighbor. An adult 18+ must sign up as the primary volunteer and can team with anyone in their household age 14+. You will then be matched with a nearby senior for the winter who has requested assistance. Volunteer shovelers are responsible for walkways only (no driveways or larger areas). To sign up, visit http://bit.ly/SoPoShovels or contact Sue Henderson at shenders@maine.rr.com with questions.

Greenbelt Pathway Detour

Beginning November 27, 2023, a one quarter-mile section of the South Portland Greenbelt Pathway will be temporarily detoured while South Portland Housing Authority builds a 52-unit expansion of Betsy Ross House to create additional affordable housing for seniors.
The detour will begin where the Greenbelt intersects with Preble Street on the grounds of the Betsy Ross House, continue down Preble Street to Broadway, and follow Broadway until Stanford Street, where pedestrians may resume the normal Greenbelt Pathway route.

While temporary, this detour will be in place for an extended period. The duration of the detour is contingent on the Betsy Ross House expansion construction schedule. This portion of the Greenbelt is tentatively expected to re-open in Spring of 2025.

Willard Beach Force Main Replacement Update

The City’s Water Resource Protection Department has completed the replacement of the sewer force main on Willard Beach. Installation of the new, long-lasting, corrosion-resistant HDPE pipe protects against leaks and ruptures. We thank you for your understanding and cooperation while this work was underway. The construction site has been demobilized and all entrances are now open. Please keep off of the dunes, which are protected by orange construction fence, as dune grass has recently been planted. Enjoy the beach with your friends and family over the Thanksgiving holiday!

Public Safety Reminder: Building Numbering

The Police Department, Fire-EMS, and Code Enforcement departments would like to remind you that dwelling houses and other buildings erected or fronting on any street must have legible, plainly visible street numbers, per City ordinance. Proper building numbering helps ensure that emergency responders can locate you quickly. The numbers should be at least 3 inches high, be of contrasting color, and be inscribed or affixed at the primary entrance. While not a requirement in the ordinance, reflective numbers are helpful after dark.

In addition to helping public safety staff respond as quickly as possible, good street numbering is also helpful for delivery services and utility suppliers. With the holiday shopping and winter storm seasons around the corner, this is a great time to make sure you have adequate numbering on your home or building.

Bus Schedule Changes

There will be minor changes to the South Portland Bus Service Route 21, 24A and 24B schedules effective December 5, 2023.

The changes are posted on the Bus Service web page and will be posted on buses as well.

Upcoming Events

Join us for the South Portland Tree Lighting on Friday, December 1 starting at 4:30 PM as we countdown to turning the holiday lights on in Mill Creek Park at 6 PM.
Festivities include:
  • Carols from the High School Chorus
  • Hot Cocoa & Treats for sale to support local PTA groups
  • Welcoming remarks from City Mayor
  • Visits with Santa
  • Visits with festive animals (Please note that horse-drawn carriage rides will not be a part of this year's event due to lack of availability)
The following donations will be accepted:
  • Non-perishable food items for the South Portland Food Cupboard
  • Unwrapped gifts for the South Portland Toy Drive
  • Winter clothing for the Children's Closet at the First Congregational Church UCC

Work With Us!

Join our team! The City of South Portland offers competitive pay and a robust selection of employee benefits, including an excellent health plan with affordable family coverage, matched retirement options, dental, vision, life, income protection, long term disability, flexible spending accounts, a condensed workweek for many positions, and more!

The City is proud of its talented and dedicated workforce and provides employees with a strong team environment; stability; a positive, family-friendly workplace where work/life needs are valued and supported; and the support, encouragement and tools for successful careers. 

The City values diversity and inclusion in the workplace, and embraces sustainable operations. Consider a job with the City of South Portland!

Coming Up at the Library

The South Portland Library regularly holds fun and engaging events for all ages. Check out books...and all the library has to offer!
Get connected with South Portland Schools! Stay up-to-date with SPSD news, School Board meetings, sporting events and more at: https://www.spsdme.org

Conservation Corner

Submitted by Barbara Dee, Chair of the Conservation Commission
Hello, my name is Shara Dee and I'm very happy to serve as the City of South Portland's Communications Officer!

I'd love to hear your feedback on our newsletter and other City communications, so feel free to send me a note any time at news@southportland.org.
The City of South Portland Community E-Newsletter includes information about City sponsored events, projects, and special announcements from South Portland's non-profit community. It is a compilation of the best available information at the time of publication. Events are subject to change without notice in the time between publication of this e-newsletter and the actual event. To send information to be considered for inclusion into this newsletter, send to news@southportland.org.
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