Bill would outlaw ice shack fees

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AUGUSTA — A legislative committee is supporting a bill that would prohibit Maine towns from collecting fees for ice fishing shacks.

Rep. Mike Shaw of Standish introduced the bill after Randolph selectmen last year voted to assess a $15 fee on each smelting shack along the town’s Kennebec River frontage. Selectmen estimated the fees would bring in about $2,000, but the town hasn’t collected the money pending the outcome of the Shaw’s bill.

State law already prohibits municipalities from charging fees on lakes and ponds that are not public water supplies. Shaw’s bill would extend the protection to coastal and tidal waters, and water bodies that serve as public water supplies such as Sebago Lake.

The bill now goes to the full Legislature.

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