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5 April 2017 | Approved: 3 May 2017

Chairman Nagrod called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. In attendance were commissioners Brenda Gumula, John McClelland, Deborah Mehlferber, and Steve Werts. Others in attendance were Town Council member Georgette Cole, Mayor Joli McCathran, and residents Charlie Challstrom, Christine Dibble, Allan Janus, Sandy Klingenberg, Alice Negin, Rebecca Richters, Mary Warfield, and Missy Yachup. Also in attendance were property owner Virginia Quesada and Lucretia Strippoli, attending for Jason Newman (304 Chestnut Avenue).

Approval of Agenda:

Steve Werts moved to approve the agenda. Brenda Gumula seconded the motion. Approved: 5-0.

Public Appearances:

2 Chairman Nagrod moved item six (6), the discussion about the Dog Park location, to Public Appearances. He then distributed a map showing three (3) potential locations for the area. They are: Emmon’s property (across Grove Road from #13 The Circle), Mulch Alley (area where Town Maintenance has dumped leaves) and Cherry Avenue (between two (2) of the existing deer exclosures). Steve Werts presented a forth location across from Dorsey Street. John McClelland believes Railroad Park would be an ideal location. There was a discussion about the pros and cons of a location in the West Woods. In conclusion, a group of volunteers will tour the West Woods to look for a possible location for the dog park. Peter summarized the proposed locations by order of best to worst; Mulch Alley, Cherry Avenue, a West Woods location. Others expressed additional concerns with the following:

  • Parking on Center Street to access Mulch Alley and/or Cherry Avenue locations
  • General liability for the Town
  • Ultimate approval process
  • Purpose of the Town Master Plan
  • Noise
  • Strangers in Town
  • Strangers casing the area
  • Difficulties in retrofitting an old Town with a modern amenity
  • Roads are public and not subject to parking restrictions

Peter explained no decisions on location would be made tonight. Three (3) locations would be selected by Monday. Mayor McCathran stated the Town Council will look at the three (3) locations and come up with an acceptable one, at which time the issue will go before the Planning Commission for a Public Ways & Property Permit. The next steps could be a Town Meeting or an Ordinance process.

304 Chestnut Avenue: Property owner Jason Newman could not attend because of illness. Lucretia Strippoli attended on Jason’s behalf. The Commission looked over the permit package and the conditions prepared by the Town attorney that will run with the property. John McClelland moved to approve the building permit application for a basement remodel at 304 Chestnut Avenue with the conditions added by the Town attorney. Steve Werts seconded the motion. Vote: 5-0.

Approval of the Minutes:

Brenda Gumula moved to approve the March minutes. Deb Mehlferber seconded the motion. Approved: 5-0.

Building Permit Applications:

103 Grove Avenue – The Commission asked the resident for clarity about the position of the dormer. She explained there was not change in height and showed the position of the dormer. They also reviewed the permit evaluation from Dave Hix. John McClelland moved to approve the building permit for a dormer enlargement at 103 Grove Avenue. Brenda Gumula seconded the motion. Vote: 5-0.

15 The Circle – The Commission reviewed the plans. The Historic Preservation Commission did an early review of the project in January 2017 but there were no official drawings at that time. John McClelland moved to conditionally approve the building permit application upon receipt of the final HPC review. Brenda Gumula seconded the motion. Vote: 5-0.

Public Ways & Property Permit:

Steve Werts explained the latest proposed WSSC work in various locations in Town. Most of the work with be lining pipes. WSSC will have to get a permit. The work could start a year from now.

Dog Park Location:

see Public Appearances.

Border Committee:

Peter Nagrod reported the Committee with meet again on Thursday, April 6, 2017. Charlie Challstrom reported he was seeking PC approval to allow the installation of stakes on the edge of Washington Grove Lane to provide a visual point of reference for the edge of the right-of-way. The PC endorsed this action. Brenda Gumula moved to allow for the measurement and flagging of the West Woods border. Steve Werts seconded the motion. Vote: 5-0.

Report from Town Council:

John McClelland reported the Council discussed proper signage for homes and the idea of using a different numbering system to help fire and rescue better identify addresses. He also reported the status of the O’Connor permanent easement was still unapproved due to an issue with calculated square footage.

Other Business:

Arlene McCrehan put in a building permit application for a fence along the rear property line at 410 Brown Street. The Commission briefly reviewed the application. The Clerk will log it in.

Brenda Gumula’s term with the PC is over. The Commission thanked her for her hard work.

Washington Grove House Records – Status Report:

Brenda Gumula reported the group has now completed 107 properties. To celebrate the benchmark of reaching 100 homes, toasts were made and champagne was consumed.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 9:08 PM.

Kathryn L. Lehman, Town Clerk

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