/* The Divi child theme test */ Planning Commission Meeting Minutes April 2014 | Town of Washington Grove
301-926-2256 washgrove@comcast.net


2 April 2014 | Approved: 7 May 2014

Chairman Challstrom called the meeting to order at 7:32 p.m. In attendance were commissioners Brenda Gumula, Peter Nagrod, Freda Temple, Steve Werts and David Young. Also in attendance were Mayor Georgette Cole, HPC member Bob Booher (Chair) and residents Ralph Hurst, Eva Polston, Jane Seegal and Mary Warfield.

Approval of Agenda

Brenda Gumula moved, Steve Werts seconded that the agenda be approved. Chairman Challstrom added “Adequacy of Boundary Survey for 201 Maple Road as Previously Submitted” to the agenda. Brenda Gumula suggested that either something be removed from this ambitious agenda or that time limits be placed on specific items. Approved: 5-0.

Approval of the Minutes

David Young moved, Brenda Gumula seconded that the Planning Commission minutes for March 5, 2014 be approved. Approved, as amended: 5-0.

Steve Werts moved, David Young seconded that the Planning Commission minutes for the special meeting on March 27, 2014 be approved. Approved, as amended: 5-0.

Public Appearances

Mary Warfield (500 McCauley Street) came to ask if a building permit was required for screening-in her porch. A discussion ensued. The Commission concluded that, because of setback requirements, this action may not be allowed on her property. More research needs to be done. Mary will do this with the Commission’s help.

Ralph Hurst came to confirm the receipt of revised plans for the addition at 404 Grove Avenue and the new boundary survey for same. The Commission praised Ralph and the property owners for the much improved design. There was a brief discussion about the meaning of plus or minus (+/-) in the architecture industry. Ralph agreed to use +/- one (1) foot as the standard for these plans.

Peter Nagrod moved to confirm approval of the building permit application (with revisions) for an addition to 404 Grove Avenue. David Young seconded the motion. Approval: 5-0.

Building Permit Applications

  • 203 2nd Avenue – demolition, with conditions – The Commission reviewed a list of conditions drafted by Charlie Challstrom. Then they compared those conditions to the County requirements as presented by Brenda Gumula. In addition to the Town conditions that accompany the demo permit, Town Maintenance Supervisor Steve Werts and Chairman Charlie Challstrom will meet with the contractor before the demolition begins. The Commission thanked Brenda for researching the County requirements.

  • Brenda Gumula moved, Peter Nagrod seconded that the demolition permit for 203 2nd Avenue be approved with Town conditions included. Approval: 5-0. Historic Preservation Commission Chair Bob Booher expressed concerns about documenting the structure. He stated he has already taken measurements and pictures. The HPC is supportive of moving ahead with the demolition.

Public Ways and Property Permit Applications

East Deer Park Bridge Reconstruction – Chairman Challstrom reviewed the current status and explained why both a Public Ways and Property permit and a Building Permit were necessary. He directed the Commission to the very thorough review prepared by the Town HPC and gave their work high praise. A discussion ensued. Conditions and comments will be added to the permit documentation and Charlie will send electronic copies to the CSX, County and contracting company representatives. The most notable addition to the documents includes answering "yes" to the question concerning historical atlas status.

Peter Nagrod moved, Steve Werts seconded the approval of the building permit application with the correction to the historical atlas question. Approval: 5-0.

Steve Werts moved, David Young seconded that the Town Public Ways and Property Permit for this project be approved. Approval: 5-0.

Draft Ordinance to Authorize Easement for Reconstruction

Eva Polston (203 2nd Ave.) commented on this document stating that it seemed to be specifically geared to her property. She went on to say that she thought this ordinance was going to be more global in order to address other homes with encroachments on Town land. There was a discussion about the following:

  • Fairness
  • The wisdom of tying an easement to the building permit process
  • Reconstruction
  • Interpretation of ordinance language
  • Rebuilding on the current footprint
  • Easement conditions
  • The wisdom of thinking toward the future
  • Making easements available to all who find themselves in this predicament (encroachment on Town land)
  • Historic easements in other jurisdictions

Charlie will convey the Commission’s concerns to Town attorney Suellen Ferguson and she will update the document. The two (2) major changes are the removal of the words “same footprint” and the expansion to all who currently have non-compliant main structures.

Building Standards Compliance Checklist

Nothing to update.

Annual Report to State of Maryland

Steve Werts moved, Brenda Gumula seconded that the Annual Report to the Maryland Department of Planning be approved. Approved: 5-0. The report will be forwarded to the Town Council for review as well.

Report from Town Council

David Young reported that the Town Council accepted a bid from A.B. Viers for road work, accepted a bid from US Lawns for fall leaf collection and approved the Mayor’s appointments to the Board of Supervisor’s of Elections and the Historic Preservation Commission. He also reported that the Town will no longer approve the use of metal detectors on public land.

Other Business

Chairman Challstrom asked about the adequacy of an alleged boundary survey presented by Attorney Charles Chester on behalf of Jim Snyder (201 Maple Road). A discussion ensued. Charlie Challstrom and Steve Werts will go to the property and try to verify the corner markers.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:55 p.m.

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