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7 September 2016 | Approved: 5 October 2016

Chairman Nagrod called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. In attendance were commissioners Brenda Gumula, Dave Hix, John McClelland, Deborah Mehlferber, and Steve Werts. Others in attendance were Mayor Joli McCathran, Council Member Georgette Cole and residents Charlie Challstrom, Kathi Higdon-Kershaw, Bud O’Connor and Carolyn O’Connor. Also present were property owners Shirl & Steven Harrison and Title Attorney Jennifer Watkins who was representing the O’Connor’s.

Approval of Agenda:

John McClelland moved to approve the agenda. Brenda Gumula seconded the motion. Chairman Nagrod moved the item 5 (409 5th Ave.) and item 7 (Cator Property Lots) to Public Appearances. Approved: 5-0, as amended.

Public Appearances:

Charlie Challstrom requested a status of the Request For Proposal for the East Woods re-subdivision project. Mayor McCathran stated it was still in the hands of the Town attorney. The hope is for a Monday arrival.

409 5th Avenue: Chairman Nagrod gave a history of the Permanent Easement Application for this property. The Commission discussed the following:

  • Conflicting surveys
  • Previous withdrawal of the original application
  • Historic Preservation review
  • The easement process

The Commission is comfortable with moving the easement application forward. They will recommend approval by the Town Council after the HPC review is complete.

Cator Property Lots (17050 Railroad St.): The Harrison’s gave an update on the property. They currently need signatures from the Town on the Final Development Plat and the Forest Conservation Plan. The Commission reviewed the Forest Conservation Plan and the subdivision process. They also discussed the following:

  • Driveway responsibility
  • Walkway responsibility
  • Cluster zoning – requirements & interpretation
  • Power/control with the building permit
  • Conditions for development included in approval of building permit
  • Two-season guarantee for the trees
  • Maintenance of Forest Conservation area
  • No sale of lots until final Plat of Subdivision is approved

Deb Mehlferber offered to review the Forest Conservation Plan and report back at the next meeting. The Commission reviewed the conditions in both the annexation agreement and the Zoning Ordinance. They agreed these conditions should be part of the approval of the Plat of Subdivision.

Approval of the Minutes:

John McClelland moved to approve the August minutes. Steve Werts seconded the motion. Approved, as amended: 5-0

Building Permit Applications:

There were none

409 5th Avenue – Request for Permanent Easement:

See Public Appearances

109 Washington Grove Lane – Proposed Use as a Church:

Dave Hix moved to accept, file and forward to the Town Council a zoning text amendment adopting amendments to Article VII, Section 8.21 to allow charitable, religious or educational institutions in the commercial zone as a special exception approved by the Board of Zoning Appeals. Deb Mehlferber seconded the motion. Vote: 5-0, as presented.

Cator Property Lots (17050 Railroad Street):

See Public Appearances

Block Corner Survey Project – Update:

Peter Nagrod reported the request for proposal for work in the East Woods is in the hands of the Town attorney. The West Woods project netted proof of the suspected encroachments by some Saybrooke residents. Letters have been written to the folks who have things on Town land. Mr. Miller (11 St. Ives Place) asked via letter to the Mayor, if the Town would reconsider their decision. There was a brief discussion. The results of the boundary marker project are the triggering event for enforcement. Now it is time for removal. Perhaps additional follow-up by the Mayor is necessary. Notifying the neighbors of the placement of orange markers was also discussed.

Block 11 Survey of Residual Town Land – Update/Status:

The steps from #8 The Circle which encroached on Town land have been removed by the owner. Dave Hix read a letter to the Planning Commission from Maggie Range (#8 The Circle) about this process.

Washington Grove House Records – Status Report:

Brenda Gumula reported the group met twice in August. A total of 70 homes have been completed. It was suggested that another “Did you know…” item be written in the Town Bulletin soon.

Report from Town Council:

John McClelland announced a report from the Vacant Property Task Force should be coming to the Town Council soon. He also reported the new website will be the beneficiary of some additional outside expertise to help with the problem areas.

Other Business:

Steve Werts reported a pipe burst at a fire hydrant near the church parking lot this morning. The break was repaired by WSSC by the end of the day.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:55 PM.

Kathryn L. Lehman, Town Clerk

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