Town of Brewster, Massachusetts

Natural Resources & Conservation

Section II - Public Safety: 2961 Natural Resources & Conservation

Mission Statement

The Natural Resources Department protects and manages Brewster’s natural resources, wildlife, open space and waters. The Department facilitates public access for the enjoyment of residents and visitors, and advances the sustainable use of the Town’s open space, coastal resources, and shellfish. The Department manages conservation areas, enhances water quality for shell fishing and recreation, and provides the Town’s harbormaster services. The Department includes the Conservation Department, which manages and permits activities within wetland resource areas and buffer zones.

Accomplishments for FY2022

  • Design and permitting for the repairs of fish weirs and retaining walls at the Stony Brook Mill site, including grants for services.
  • Design of stormwater improvements for Walkers Pond landing.
  • Updated Master Plan for Drummer Boy Park, and obtained grant and donations for design and permitting of a raised boardwalk to Wing Island.
  • County grants for bike racks and shellfish purchases from local growers to supplement recreational oyster harvest.
  • Met increased public demand for outdoor recreation and recreational shellfish harvest during pandemic years.

Goals & Initiatives for FY2023

  • Repair of fish weirs and retaining walls at the Stony Brook Mill Site
  • Site improvements at Drummer Boy Park consistent with the approved Master Plan
  • Design and permitting for the raised boardwalk leading to Wing Island
  • Design and permitting for improvements at the Freemans Pond culvert at Paines Creek beach
  • Continue to implement wastewater and nutrient reduction needs in sensitive watersheds

Budget Highlights

  • The budget represents a $34,695 (7.73%) increase over the FY22 budget.
  • An increase of $3,000 is provided for electronic mooring permitting system annual fee - this allows payment by customers online and saves staff significant time.
  • There is an increase of $300 to the existing part-time wages budget. These hours are for our part time shellfish wardens who assist with recreational harvest events.
  • There is an increase of $450 to the existing printing budget. That printer has failed and a new printer has been purchased.
  • There is an increase of $1,200 to the existing summer quahog stocking budget for the summer program. The cost of clams has increase twice over the last several years and stock has been low. At the same time the public demand for this program has doubled.
  • There is a decrease of $4,172 overtime wages as the OT line has not been expended in the past two fiscal years and both employees that it is used for are at 40 hour work weeks.
  • There is a new request to add (2) seasonal positions at 27.5 hours a week for 10 weeks to assist with the increased demands during the summer season-50% to be covered with American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds.