What is the Acadia Advisory Commission?
The purpose of the Acadia National Park Advisory Commission is to advise the Secretary of the Interior through his or her designee, the superintendent of Acadia National Park. The superintendent consults with the commission regarding the management and development of the park.
The commission was established by the 1986 park boundary legislation (Public Law 99-420) and amended by Public Law 110-229 in 2008. The commission terminates in 2026. The bylaws describe the commission in more detail. Meetings are open to the public; meeting notices appear in the Federal Register.
Four standing committees make recommendations for action to the commission.
Science and education
Can I Attend The Advisory Commission Meetings?
Advisory Commission meetings are open to the public. You can check the Federal Register
or our social media platforms
for announcements for the next meeting. You can also contact your town representative (list below).
When Does The Commission Meet?
First Monday in February
First Monday in June
Second Monday in September
Meeting notices will be published in the Federal Register.
Who Sits on the Advisory Commission?
Members of the Acadia National Park Advisory Commission represent the Secretary of the Interior, the Governor for the State of Maine, and the communities in the surrounding Acadia National Park region.
|| Represented Group
|| Term End Date
| Kenneth Cline
|| At Large
| R. Frederick Ehrlenbach
|| Town of Trenton
| Carolyn Gothard
|| Town of Tremont
| Katherine Heidinger
|| Town of Winter Harbor
| Matthew Horton
|| Governor of Maine
| Jacqueline Johnston
|| Town of Gouldsboro
|| Town of Swan's Island
| Howie Motenko
|| Governor of Maine
| Kendall Davis
|| Town of Mount Desert
| Stephen Shea
|| Governor of Maine
| Kenneth Smith
|| Town of Bar Harbor
| G Bruce Wiersma, Ph.D.
|| At Large
| Ben Worcester III
|| Town of Southwest Harbor
|| Town of Cranberry Isles
|| Town of Frenchboro
|| At Large
Members: Ken Cline, Ken Smith, Ben (Lee) Worcester
ANP Liaison: Land Resource Specialist (Emily Seger Pagan)
Park Use Committee:
Chair: Jacqueline Johnston
Members: Katherine Heidinger, Ken Smith, Fred Ehrlenbach, Matthew Horton, Howie Motenko
ANP Liaison: Deputy Superintendent (Brandon Bies)
Science and Education Committee:
Chair: Bruce Wiersma
Members: Caroline Gothard, Stephen Shea, Ken Cline
ANP Liaison: Science Coordinator (Abe Rushing-Miller)
Members: Carolyn Gothard, Stephen Shea
ANP Liaison: Cultural Resources Program Manager (Rebecca Cole-Will)
Advisory Commission Bylaws
The bylaws (which are in the process of being amended) contain detailed information about the purpose, membership, meetings, and committees of the commission.
Ratified on Nov. 16, 1987
Amended Jan. 11, 1988
Amended May 13, 1996
Amended August 5, 1996
The official designation of the commission is the Acadia National Park Advisory Commission, established by Public Law 99-420, Section 103 and amended by P.L. 110-229, Sec. 314(b).
The purpose of the commission is to advise the Secretary of the Interior through his designee, the superintendent, Acadia National Park. The superintendent shall conduct with and request the advice of the commission on matters relating to the management and development of the park including, but not limited to, each of the following:
- The acquisition of lands and interests in lands (including conservation easements on islands).
- Termination of rights of use and occupancy.
The commission shall be composed of sixteen members appointed by the Secretary as follows:
- three members at large as selected by the Secretary;
- three members appointed from among individuals recommended by the Governor of Maine;
- four members appointed from among individuals recommended by each of the four towns on the Island of Mount Desert;
- Three members appointed from among individuals recommended by each of the three Hancock County mainland towns of Gouldsboro, Winter Harbor and Trenton; and
- three members appointed from among individuals recommended by each of the three island towns of Cranberry Isles, Swans Island and Frenchboro.
The terms of the commission members shall be three years except for that for the initial appointments under each paragraph, one member shall serve for a term of one year, and one member shall serve for a term of two years.
Members may serve beyond the termination date of their appointment and may continue to serve until they are reappointed or replaced. Any vacancy on the commission shall be filled in the same manner in which the original appointment was made.
The officers of the Commission shall be Chairman, Vice Chairman, and Secretary. The officers shall be elected annually at the spring meeting by a quorum of the membership. Nomination for officers shall be submitted after the winter meeting but at least thirty days prior to the scheduled spring meeting. Each officer shall be chosen from the membership. The term of each office will be for twelve months or until the elections can be held. No one member shall serve in the same office for more than three consecutive terms. Should any officer not be able to continue to serve a full term, an election shall be held at the next meeting to select a replacement.
Members of the commission shall serve without compensation as such, except that the National Park Service is authorized to pay the expenses reasonably incurred by the commission in carrying out its responsibilities.
The superintendent, Acadia National Park, will provide staff support to the commission.
All meetings of the commission will be held in accordance with properly constituted notice and will be open to the public. The commission will meet at least three times a year. All meetings shall be called by the chairman, and additional meetings may be called at the request of a majority of the commissioners.
Seven commissioners shall constitute a quorum for a commission meeting. In the event a quorum fails, those present may constitute themselves as a committee and make recommendations to the full commission. Any municipal member may defer for one meeting any motion or recommendation affecting that municipality.
The agenda for meetings shall be developed by the chairman and superintendent, Acadia National Park, and be included in the published notice of meetings. Commissioners with proposals for inclusion in the agenda shall notify the chairman in sufficient time for them to be included in the public notice of the meeting. The chairman is responsible for the approval of the commission meeting agenda. Matters not on the agenda set forth in the notice may be added to the agenda at the meeting by unanimous vote of those present.
Any private individuals interested in addressing the commission may avail themselves of the procedures provided in the public notice of the meeting or request their town/state/federal representatives to include their interests in the formal agenda. The purpose of these provisions is to provide an avenue for individual public input within the parameters of an orderly meeting.
The proceedings of the commission will be recorded. The draft minutes of the meeting will be submitted to the Chairman of the commission for review and acceptance. Following opportunity for any necessary corrections, the commission, by resolution, will approve the minutes. A copyof the final version of the minutes will be sent to the commissioners at least seven days prior to the succeeding meeting.
Any commissioner who shall be absent from three consecutive meetings of the commission, unless excused by resolution of the commission, shall be deemed to have vacated his or her office, and the appropriate official will be requested to appoint a new member to the commission.
After two absences a commissioner shall be notified of this possibility by the chairman. In advance of any meeting, commissioners shall notify the chairman or secretary if they are unable to attend and the reason for the absence
Committees will be established by the commission for specific purposes and will report to the commission. Wherever possible, committee meetings will be held on the same day as the commission meetings. All committees will have a minimum of three members and a maximum of eight. Membership of one federal and onestate representative is desirable. Exceptions to this general rule of committee composition may be altered by resolution of the commission. Committee chairmen, with the concurrence of the commission chairman, may call meetings or workshops to develop information on the subject matter assigned to the committee. The National Park Service will supply staff support to these committees.
All media contacts regarding commission actions or reports shall come from the commission chairman, vice-chairman, or secretary.
The commission will submit to the Secretary of the Interior an annual report on the actions of the commission beginning with the first report for the year ending December 1987.
These Bylaws may be amended or added to by a majority vote of the commission at a meeting notified in part for that purpose.
U.S. Department of the Interior
National Park Service
Acadia National Park Advisory Commission Charter
- Committee's Official Designation. The official designation of the Commission is the Acadia National Park Advisory Commission (Commission).
- Authority. The commission was established by Section 103 of Public Law 99-420, September 25, 1986, as amended by Public Law 110-229, Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 2008, May 8 2008. The Commission is established in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), as amended, 5 U.S.C., App. 2.
- Objectives and Scope of Activities. The Commission is to consult with the Secretary of the Interior (Secretary) on matters relating to the management and development of Acadia National Park including, but not limited to, the acquisition of lands and interests in lands (including conservation easements on islands), and the termination of rights of use and occupancy.
- Description of Duties. The duties of the Commission are solely advisory and are as stated in paragraph 3 above.
- Official to Whom the Committee Reports. The Commission reports to the Secretary through the Designated Federal Officer (DFO).
- Support. The National Park Service will provide administrative and logistical support to the Commission.
- Estimated Annual Operating Costs and Staff Years. The annual operating costs associated with supporting the Commission's functions are estimated to be $50,000, including all direct and indirect expenses and .40 in staff years.
- Designated Federal Officer. The Designated Federal Officer is the Superintendent, Acadia National Park, National Park Service who is a full-time Federal employee appointed in accordance with Agency procedures. The DFO will approve or call all Commission and subcommittee meetings, prepare and approve all meeting agendas, attend all Commission and subcommittee meetings, adjourn any meeting when the DFO determines adjournment to be in the public interest, and chair meetings when directed to do so by the secretary.
- Estimated Number and Frequency of Meetings. The Commission will meet approximately 2-4 times per year, and at such time as designated by the DFO.
- Duration. Continuing.
- Termination. The Commission will carry out its duties until September 25, 2026, at which time the Commission will terminate pursuant to Public Law 99-420, September 25, 1986, as amended by Public Law 110-229, Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 2008, May 9, 2008. All appointments will terminate with the Commission. The Commission will not meet or take any official action without a valid current charter.
- Membership and Designation. The Commission shall be composed of 16 members appointed by the Secretary, as follows:
- (a) three members at large;
- (b) three members appointed from among individuals reccomended by the Governor of Maine;
- (c) four members appointed from among individuals recommended by each of the four towns on the island of Mount Desert;
- (d) three members appointed from among individuals recommended by each of the three Hancock County mainland communities of Gouldsboro, Winter Harbor and Trenton; and
- (e) three members appointed from among individuals reccomended by each of the three island towns of Cranberry Isles, Swans Island, and Frenchboro.
- Members may be appointed as representatives or special Government employees. The Department of the Interior will provide materials to those members serving as special Government employees.
- Members will be appointed for 3-year terms. A vacancy on the Commission will be filled in the same manner in which the original appointment was made. Members serve at the discretion of the Secretary.
- Members of the Commission and its subcommittee members serve without compensation. However, while away from their homes or regular places of business, Commission and subcommittee members engaged in Commission business, approved by the DFO, may be allowed travel expenses including per diem in lieu of subsistence, in the same manner as persons employed intermittently in Government service under Section 5703 of Title 5 of the United States Code.
- Ethics Responsibility of Members. No Commission or subcommittee member will participate in any specific party matter including a lease, license, permit, contract, claim, agreement, or related litigation with the Department in which the member has a direct financial interest. In addition, the Department of the Interior will provide materials to those members appointed as special Government employees, explaining their ethical obligations with which the members should be familiar. Consistent with the ethics requirements, members will endeavor to avoid any actions that would cause the public to question the integrity of the Commissions' operations, activities, or advice. The provisions of this paragraph do not affect any other statutory or regulatory ethical obligations to which a member may be subject.
- Subcommittees. Subject to the DFO's approval, subcommittees may be formed for the purposes of compiling information or conduction research. However, such subcommittees must act only under the direction of the DFO and must report their recommendations to the full COmmittee for consideration. Subcommittees must not provide advice or work products directly to the Agency. The Commission Chair, with the approval of the DFO, will appoint subcommittee members. Subcommittees will meet as necessary to accomplish their assignments, subject to the approval of the DFO and availability of resources.
- Recordkeeping. The records of the Commission, and formally and informally established subcommittees of the Commission, shall be handled in accordance with General Records Schedule 26 Item 2 or other approved Agency records disposition schedule. These records shall be available for public inspection and copying subject to the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. 552.
View the original document notarized by the Secretary of the Interior.