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6 August 2014 | Approved: 3 September 2014

Chairman Challstrom called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. In attendance were commissioners Brenda Gumula, David Hix, John McClelland, Peter Nagrod and Steve Werts. Also in attendance were Councilor Georgette Cole, HPC member Gail Littlefield, and resident Ralph Hurst.

Approval of Agenda

Brenda Gumula moved, Peter Nagrod seconded, that the agenda be approved. Chairman Challstrom removed Verizon from the Public Ways and Property Permits (Item #5) and added WSSC work on Maple Avenue and Deer Park Bridge update in its place. Approved: 5-0, as amended.

Approval of the Minutes

Peter Nagrod moved, Brenda Gumula seconded, that the Planning Commission minutes for July 2, 2014 be approved. There were two (2) minor corrections. Approved: 5-0; as amended.

Public Appearances

There were no Public Appearances.

Building Permit Applications

  • 201Maple Road – Chairman Challstrom reported a conversation with Jim Snyder indicated that architectural drawings are coming. The Commission will review the drawings in order to gain a better understanding of this project. The HPC will also informally review the new drawings.
  • 501 Brown Street – Peter Nagrod reported all setbacks, height and lot coverage numbers are fine. He asked Chairman Challstrom why a boundary survey was not included. Chair Challstrom explained at the time of subdivision for Brown Street Station, all corners were marked on the land and noted on Plat No. 19440. All property corners were located by PC members. Peter Nagrod moved, John McClelland seconded, that the building permit application for a screed porch addition be approved. Vote: 5-0.
  • 102 Center Street – Peter Nagrod reported all setbacks, height and lot coverage numbers are fine. A discussion about what was the front, rear and side of this property ensued. Peter Nagrod moved, John McClelland seconded, that the building permit application for a shed be approved, contingent upon receipt of omitted lot and rear yard coverage numbers for the worksheet. Peter will meet with the resident about the needed information.
    Vote: 5-0.

Public Ways and Property Permit Applications

  • 407 Acorn Lane – Bruce Rothrock has decided he will not need to dig up the roadway (Johnson Alley) for his drainage project. Instead, he will move forward with the installation of a curb alongside the new addition in order to control the water run-off problem. There was a discussion about building on Town property. Chairman Challstrom stated this permit application should be approved by the Commission based on the fact it is in the best interest of the Town in terms of storm water management. The Commission will only approve the part of the project on Town property. Steve Werts will be involved in this project. There was a discussion about liability. Charlie Challstrom moved, John McClelland seconded, that the Public Ways & Property Permit for installation of a curb on Johnson Alley adjacent to 407 Acorn Lane be approved. Vote: 5-0.
  • WSSC – There have been recent communications with the project manager. They are trying to dig as little as possible and will use the existing manholes to accomplish their goal. The contractor will use cameras and a roto rooter-type tool the clear out the lines. After that, the pipes will be lined.
  • Deer Park Bridge: Steve Werts has been in regular contact with the crew doing this work. He reported the new, curved beams have arrived but cannot be installed until the utility company moves some over-hanging wires. The contractor has committed to giving Steve the pictures taken during this process. Gail Littlefield made mention of the nine (9) qualifications needed to retain historical integrity.

Zoning Text Amendment – Adding Height Element to Non-Compliance; other possible additions

John McClelland suggested this be postponed to later in the meeting.

Block Corner Survey for Block 6 – Plat Approval

The Commission examined the Block 6 block corner survey map prepared by Snider & Associates. Brenda Gumula moved, Steve Werts seconded, that the block corner survey for Block 6 be approved. Vote: 5-0. There was a lengthy discussion about fences located on Town property and viable options to inform residents of the encroachment. The discussion then moved to one of general non-compliance of other homes in Town.

Building Standards Compliance Checklist – Status Report

Brenda Gumula distributed a Draft Checklist Procedures document. She talked the Commission through each step. There was a discussion about making this document a fillable PDF, next steps (friendly Town Bulletin announcements), including the document in the Welcome Packet, and proactive actions with realtors and homeowners. Brenda Gumula will get help from Georgette Cole and Freda Temple with the friendly Town Bulletin announcement of the project.

Zoning Text Amendment – Adding Height Element to Non-Compliance; other possible additions

Charlie Challstrom reviewed the nature of this item, stating it came from the idea of adding a vertical component to Article VII, Section 5.32; Definition of Degree of Non-Compliance. Although previous meeting minutes reflect the intent of the current ordinance to already include this element, more clarity is needed. Chairman Challstrom introduced the idea of scheduling a Worksession that would only address amendments to Article VII. John McClelland suggested a general review of the entire Code of Ordinances to provide consistency throughout the document. The Worksession will take place on Sept. 17th at 7:30 PM in the Council Room. The Commissioners will come to the meeting with proposed changes to the Town Code of Ordinances for discussion.

Council Report

John McClelland reported the following;

  • A complaint about noise at McCathran Hall during a recent rental was brought to the Council’s attention. The wedding party followed the rules of the Town Hall rental agreement and shut down the loud noise at 10:00PM.
  • The Town had a high water bill ($1,600.00) this spring due to vandalism. WSSC adjusted the bill.
  • The new Traffic Calming Committee will meet on August 25th.

Other Business

  • Brenda Gumula asked if Temporary Use Permits had been issued for 500 Brown Street and 417 Center Street. The Clerk reported “yes” for 500 Brown and “no” for 417 Center. A discussion about the need to educate residents ensued.
  • The Planning Commission write-up in the Town Bulletin will be updated.
  • Brenda Gumula stated residents would benefit from trimming at Town intersections to improve sight lines. She also mentioned Maple Road and Brown Street as a visibility problem because of the way vehicles are being parked. She went on to say both are safety issues. There was a discussion about sending letters to residents who are in violation. The Commission also discussed an item for the Town Bulletin that explained the public safety issue presented when one parks within 25 feet of a STOP sign.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:48 p.m.

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