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7 August 2019 | Approved: 2 October 2019

Peter Nagrod called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. In attendance were Commissioners Charlie Challstrom, Jon Cohen, Georgette Cole, Robert Johnson (Alternate), and Deb Mehlferber. Also present were Ralph Hurst, Eva Polston, Mike Queen, Jane Seegal, and David Stopak.

Approval of Agenda:

Georgette Cole moved to approve the agenda. Charlie Challstrom seconded the motion. The Commission added a building permit applications for a fence at 201 Brown Street to #2. Approved: 5-0.

Building Permit Applications:

203 2nd Avenue (Eva Polston) – Demolition of Shed: It was reported the shed in question is decidedly connected to a shed at 315 Grove Avenue. Eva stated her goal with the demo was to get her fence off of her neighbor’s land and remove the old shed. Jane Seegal (315 Grove) stated she is worried her shed will not stand alone after the demo and the Town shouldn’t allow the creation of a hazardous situation. She would like to see both sheds demolished but is concerned she won’t be allowed to rebuild. Deb Mehlferber stated this is an unusual situation unlike anything else in Town and should be “grand-fathered.” There was a discussion about the following:

  • Applying for a variance
  • Surveys of the properties
  • Ways to address this complicated situation
  • Demo permit for 315 Grove
  • Ability to do maintenance in between the sheds

It was decided to deny the request to demolish the shed and Eva will go to the Board of Zoning Appeals for a hearing along with a recommendation of the Commission’s support for the action.

Georgette Cole moved to deny two (2) permits for shed reconstruction at 203 2nd Avenue and 315 Grove Avenue contingent upon receipt of paper work by the 14th of August. Peter Nagrod seconded the motion. Approved: 5-0.

Jane and Eva were advised to bring their permit applications for demolition to the Historic Preservation Commission meeting on August 20th.

201 Brown Street – Deb Mehlferber explained what the resident was requesting. It boils down to repair of the most recent fence erected on the property. Deb Mehlferber moved to approve the fence permit for 201 Brown Street. Jon Cohen seconded the motion. Approved: 5-0.

Public Appearances:

There were none.

Zoning Text Amendment to Delete the Definition of Dormer and to Modify Minimum Lot Size Standards for the RR-3 Zone – Status:

First Section: Charlie Challstrom reviewed his understanding of why this item was not approved at the July meeting. He referenced documents sent to members via e-mail. This ZTA will guarantee the subdivision only allows for two (2) lots with a straight line dividing line. Any conditions will take place during the subdivision process not with the Zoning Text Amendment process. Chairman Nagrod expressed concerns about two (2) things:

  1. The motivation and purpose for doing this.
  2. Using his property as an example; what could keep him from applying for new zoning and doing the same thing?

Jon Cohen warned against setting a dangerous precedent. David Stopak expressed his concern about the threat of demolition. There is nothing in place right now to keep demolition of a cottage from happening. The Town needs to develop standards and processes for this action. There was additional discussion about the following:

  • Protection from demolition
  • Creating an RR-3 Conditional Zone
  • Incorporating HPC conditions

Second Section: In reference to a garage renovation plan at 211 Maple, Charlie Challstrom read an e-mail from HPC Chair Bob Booher concerning dormers and size. The Commission discussed rules for dormers, size, knee walls and a ½ story definition. Chairman Nagrod brought up the idea of having a joint work session with the HPC. He will talk with Bob Booher and figure out a date. This item was tabled and will be on the September agenda. The Commission will further discuss eliminating the definition of dormer and re-work the definition of ½ story.

Approval of Minutes:

Georgette Cole moved to approve the July minutes. Peter Nagrod seconded the motion. Approved: 5-0, as amended.

At this point in the meeting, Georgette Cole suggested the entire Planning Commission be notified upon receipt of a building permit application. The Town Clerk will copy the PC when she does her notification to the HPC.

Report from Town Council:

Charlie Challstrom reported the following:
Sale of Town Property — The Council continues work on the Ordinance for 315 Grove Ave (Jane Seegal) awaiting advice from the Town Attorney. The Ordinance for 409 5th Ave (Bud and Carolyn O’Connor) is planned for introduction at the Town Council meeting on August 12.

Deer Management – A Resolution authorizing deer management bow hunting sessions will be presented for action at the Town Council meeting on August 12.

Speed Humps and Bumps – The Council approved purchase and installation of a table top speed hump at Grove Road and Oak Street. The existing hump will be moved to another location. The non-standard speed bumps on Chestnut Road will be removed when a speed hump is installed on the main drag (not at stop signs) on Chestnut Road

Master Plan Work Session – Report & Update:

Georgette Cole reported the last meeting was very productive. There was a brief mention of the Forest Preserve designation. Peter thanked Georgette for the amazing amount of work she has done on this project.

Washington Grove House Records – Status Report: Nothing to report.

Other Business:

Chairman Nagrod will work on scheduling a Joint Work Session with the Historic Preservation Commission.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 9:32 PM.

Kathryn L. Lehman, Town Clerk

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