Override For Coonamessett Purchase Planned For Falmouth Ballot

CCB MEDIA PHOTO William Zammer, owner of the Coonamessett Inn in Falmouth, says local innkeepers need to learn how to compete with Airbnb.

CCB MEDIA PHOTO
William Zammer, owner of the Coonamessett Inn in Falmouth, says local innkeepers need to learn how to compete with Airbnb.

FALMOUTH – The town of Falmouth will begin open discussions with the owner of the Coonamessett Inn.

Selectmen recently voted to allow Town Manager Julian Suso to start negotiations with owner William Zammer to purchase the property, which could be used as a new senior center.

Selectmen also voted to place a Proposition 2 ½ override for the purchase on the September ballot.

“It would not be a permanent override. It would just be to pay the bonds on this,” said Doug Jones, a Falmouth selectman.

Jones said before residents head to the polls they will have to be aware of what the negotiated purchase price for the property would be.

“We cannot have this question on the ballot without the towns people knowing what the dollar figure is,” he said.

If the override is passed at the ballot, it would then need approval at town meeting.

“We would also likely have to get a zoning bylaw change because right now that property is zoned as residential,” Jones said.

Zammer’s company runs the Coonamessett Inn, along with the Flying Bridge and Red Horse Inn in Falmouth, Tugboats in West Yarmouth and Clancy’s in Dennis Port.

Zammer said he feels it is worth letting go of the Coonamessett, a widely-known staple for events and holiday dinners, in favor of it being put to use as a senior center.

He said it would save the town money insofar as the furnishings, septic and power supply is in good working order.

“The buildings are in absolutely great shape, it’s a turn-key operation,” Zammer said.

The town has searched for an appropriate senior center site for over two years, and Zammer said another opportunity such as this is not likely to turn up again.

By BRIAN MERCHANT, CapeCod.com NewsCenter

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