APPROVED

 

TOWN OF PELHAM

ZONING BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT MEETING

May 14, 2012

 

The Chairman David Hennessey called the meeting to order at approximately 7:00 pm.

 

The Secretary Robert Molloy called roll:

 

PRESENT:

 

 

ABSENT:

David Hennessey, Svetlana Paliy, Peter McNamara, Robert Molloy, Alternate Chris LaFrance, Planning Director/Zoning Administrator Jeff Gowan

 

Kevin O’Sullivan, Alternate Lance Ouellette

 

Mr. LaFrance was appointed to be a voting member.

 

ELECTION OF OFFICERS

 

MOTION:

(McNamara/LaFrance) To elect David Hennessey as Chairman.

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried. 

 

 

MOTION:

(Molloy/McNamara) To elect Svetlana Paliy as Vice Chairwoman.

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried. 

 

 

MOTION:

(McNamara/Paliy) To elect Robert Molloy as Secretary.

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried. 

 

CONTINUED HEARINGS

 

Case #ZO2012-00006  -  MASON, Cathy & CHATEL, Robert / 36 Kens Way - Map 15 Lot 9-40-3 – Seeking a Variance to Article III, Section 307-12, 307-13B & 307-14 to permit a single family home to be converted to a duplex on a lot with no frontage on a Town accepted road.

 

Mr. Shayne Gendron, representing the applicants, came forward to discuss the variance request.  He said since the last meeting a site walk was conducted.  One point of interest brought up was a sign should possibly be added; the owners had no problem doing so to direct the street number and address location. 

 

Mr. Hennessey commented that all five seated board members were present for the site walk.  It was an impressive setting.  The reason for adding signage was to alleviate confusion for the house location.  Mr. Hennessey stated that the five variance criteria had previously been put into the record. 

 

There was no public input.

 

Mr. McNamara believed after the site walk was conducted it removed any potential reservations there may have been about the variance.  He said the property would increase in value.  The proposed would not harm any neighbors; aesthetically it would be pleasing.  Nothing would be added to the building footprint; there were no environmental/water issues.  Mr. McNamara felt the proposed was the perfect situation to apply a variance. 

 

Mr. Hennessey agreed with Mr. McNamara’s comments.  He believed many of the board members were pleasantly surprised to see how well cared for the property was.  He felt the way the site had been kept was a tremendous asset to the Town.  He said the owners should be proud of the property.    

 

BALLOT VOTE:

 

Mr. Hennessey – Yes to all criteria; with sign stipulation.

Mr. McNamara – Yes to all criteria

Mr. Molloy – Yes to all criteria

Ms. Paliy – Yes to all criteria

Mr. LaFrance – Yes to all criteria

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried.

 

 

 

VARIANCE GRANTED

 

Case #ZO2012-00007 -  COOLEY, Ken  / 4 Little Island Park - Map 24 Lot 11-311 – Seeking a Variance to Article III, Sections 307-8(C) & 307-12 – to permit the existing structure to be razed and a second story to be added to make a more suitable floor/living area plan & make more conforming to today’s regulations.

 

Mr. Hennessey stated that a site walk had been conducted and had previously discussed the variance criteria. 

 

Mr. Ken Cooley came forward to discuss the requested variance.  He replied to concerns brought up by the neighbors.  The water coming out of the ground was on the community beach area, not on Mr. Cooley’s property.  Regarding the concern about boat fumes, Mr. Cooley said he had no control over them.  He said he wouldn’t be touching the docks except for his own.  He said the ridge lines had been marked and believed they fit with the character of the surrounding buildings. 

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Mr. Douglas Mann, 2 Little Island Park, reiterated his concern for the lack of visibility for the house located behind the proposed house as well as for his visibility.  He said most of the houses on the shore were one story.  He noted his continued concern regarding the boat fumes accumulating in the area. 

 

The public hearing was closed. 

 

Mr. McNamara said during the site walk they saw that the house most impacted by the second floor addition was located directly behind the applicant’s home.  The testimony from the applicant was the owner of that home had no problem at all with the proposed house, thinking that it would improve the character of the neighborhood; aesthetically it would be better and raise property values.  Mr. McNamara said his view during the site walk was that everyone else’s house (other than the house directly behind the applicant) was perhaps incidentally involved. 

 

Mr. Molloy indicated that during the site walk the applicant had marked the height of the proposed structure.  He said the height seemed reasonable compared to the surrounding homes. 

 

Mr. Hennessey asked for the total height from grade to the peak of the house.  Mr. Cooley said the house would be 27ft.  Mr. Hennessey commented in the past, although there was nothing in the Town’s code,  the Board had placed height restrictions to 25ft.  In this case, the property sat below grade off the road, so in fact from the road the height was less than many of the properties approved with the 25ft. height restriction.  Mr. Hennessey was unsure if reducing the height by two feet would address the neighbor’s concerns or create a significant change. 

 

Ms. Paliy felt the existing trees blocked the view.  When the trees are removed for the building and septic, it will give the surrounding properties more of a view.  She said it would also create a less dangerous situation and a nicer neighborhood.  She said the property had been abandoned for a long time and the neighbors were lucky to have someone come in to fix the property up and provide a better view. 

 

Mr. Hennessey said having an updated septic system benefited the area.  He said none of the lots in the area met the current zoning, so every case where someone wants to make improvements/changes the Board has to weigh modernizing the property versus what the zoning law states.  He said it wasn’t easy.  He felt the septic system was more important to the value than the aesthetics.  Mr. McNamara said the lot would be more conforming to the regulations when built and felt it would be an overall improvement to the situation for the applicant and the neighborhood.  Mr. Hennessey stated he heard the abutter’s concerns and understood their point. 

 

Mr. Gowan clarified that the beach referred to as ‘public’ was not actually a Town public beach, but rather was a shared beach by the residents. 

 

BALLOT VOTE:

 

Mr. Hennessey – Yes to all criteria

Mr. McNamara – Yes to all criteria

Mr. Molloy – Yes to all criteria

Ms. Paliy – Yes to all criteria

Mr. LaFrance – Yes to all criteria

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried.

 

 

VARIANCE GRANTED

 

HEARING(S)

 

Case #ZO2012-00008 – WUNDERLICH, Richard & Kathleen  /  501 Bridge Street -  Map 22 Lot 8-109-2 – Seeking a Variance to Article III, Section 307-12, Table 1 to permit a second commercial building to be constructed 15ft. from a lot with a minimum of 30ft. required on a lot having only 196ft. +/- of frontage with 200ft. required on a 1.5 acres +/- lot in the business zone.

 

Mr. Molloy read the list of abutters aloud. There were no persons present who did not have their name read, or who had difficulty with notification.

 

Mr. LaFrance told the Board that Mr. Wunderlich had been a customer of his.  He didn’t feel that fact would affect his ability to make a decision.  He said if the Board had an opposition to him remaining seated he would step down.  Mr. McNamara asked Mr. LaFrance if he had any financial interest in the project.  Mr. LaFrance replied based on the proposal on the table he did not.  Mr. Molloy asked Mr. LaFrance if he had any discussions with the applicant about the proposal prior to the meeting.  Mr. LaFrance answered no.   There were no objections by the public or Board members to Mr. LaFrance remaining seated and being a voting member for the hearing.

 

Mr. Joseph Maynard of Benchmark Engineering, representing the applicant, came forward to discuss the requested variance.  He described the property, which contained 1.576 acres with 196.84ft. frontage on Route 38 as per an approved plan by the Planning Board in 1981.  The property is currently zoned Business and contains an existing 50ft.x80ft. building with an approved addition about to begin.  According to test pits, the soils indicate medium to coarse sand with deep water tables of roughly 7ft.  The site is accessed from an existing gravel driveway coming from an easement through the property in front of the lot.  There is also a number of other gravel parking areas that extend outward from the main gravel access that blend in with the uses on the adjacent properties to the east and south.  The lot has a unique shape containing a number of jogs.  The frontage is actually a strip of land with a driveway access; the rear of the site ‘mushrooms out’ and creates the buildable area.  There’s a drainage easement that bisects the access area and extends to the neighboring property to the south and traverses to Route 38.  Mr. Maynard explained that the applicant would like to construct a metal framed 48ft.x80ft. building, with a height of 16ft. to the soffit.  The roof will have a 1 pitch; with that pitch, on a 45ft. stretch the height of the building will be 18.5ft.  Town zoning states there is a minimum of 15ft. setback with the caveat of taking the building height and multiplying by two, which would require the proposed building to be 37ft. from both the easterly and southerly lot lines.  Based on the dimensions it would put the proposed building in the center of the existing gravel drive impeding access to the rear building and interfere with any kind of truck utilizing overhead doors.  Mr. Maynard proposed to place the building at the 15ft side line setback to the east and south.  By allowing the building in this location it will give ample room for the driveway to the rear of the building and give ample room for trucks to turn around, back up and utilize the doors on the existing building. 

 

Mr. Maynard reviewed the plan sketch showing the location of the existing building, proposed building, access drive and setbacks.      

 

Mr. McNamara asked what the proposed building would be used for.  Mr. Maynard replied the applicant would store his personal items and vehicles.  He said the existing building was utilized as sort of a warehouse.  He said the whole area had industrial-type buildings scattered around the whole complex.  There will be limited traffic in/out of the building.  Mr. McNamara questioned what was on the site for the proposed building.  Mr. Maynard submitted photographs showing the site and what was currently at the location.  If the proposed building is constructed, the lot will be cleaned up considerably. 

 

Mr. Maynard read aloud the variance criteria, as submitted to the Board. 

 

Mr. McNamara questioned if the proposed building would affect the 20ft. drainage easement.  Mr. Maynard answered no; they would be maintaining a 15ft. sideline setback.  He said the easement existed on the neighboring property, it was simply against the applicant’s sideline.  Mr. McNamara asked how far the building would be from the main wetland area.  Mr. Maynard said they paced the site off in that area; no additional surveying had been done.  The culvert extended into the neighboring lot.  The building itself would be well over 50ft. away.  Some of the existing driveway may be in the Wetland Conservation District (‘WCD’).  The record plans, from the previous site plans, didn’t show any WCD buffer on the land being discussed. 

 

Mr. Molly read aloud a letter submitted to the Board from Michael Sherman of 103 Bridge Street, dated May 4, 2012.  The letter indicated the concern of another large commercial building being built at the site.  The lot is at the location where Beaver and Golden Brook meet. A building (such as the proposed) adds to the amount and speed of runoff into the brook.  Mr. Sherman believed the Board should be very concerned about pollution from the site because of its proximity to the brook.  It was noted that the Town had recently passed a warrant article to do a flood study.  Mr. Sherman believed they would find that upslope development, paving and draining from developments had contributed greatly to the flooding issues that Pelham now faces.  He believed that the Board needed to continue to think about adverse reactions to development and hoped they would find that another commercial building at the site was not in the Town’s best interest. 

 

Mr. Maynard responded that the property had a gravel surface across approximately 75% of the actual lot.  The location of the building was over a gravel surface.  If the variance is granted, the applicant would be required to have Planning Board review/approval.  The Planning Board procedure would require the applicant to do a full drainage analysis of runoff from the site and to mitigate/control any runoff.  Currently it was just a gravel lot with drainage running off; any development would end up with some form of drainage measure installed which would only improve any runoff from the site. Mr. Maynard said they were seeking relief for the setback; without such the building could be installed, but it would end up in the middle of the site making traffic movement difficult. 

 

Mr. Hennessey recalled the Board granted a variance approximately two years ago for a used car dealership.  Mr. Maynard answered no, that property was located in front of the property being discussed. 

 

There was no public input. 

 

Mr. Molloy said he drove by the site all the time and the proposed location of the building seemed to be reasonable. 

 

Mr. Hennessey said when the variance came before the Board for the lot in front they chose not to do a site walk because everyone felt they knew the site.  He said he had no idea the lot was at the junction of the two streams.  Mr. Maynard said the juncture of the two streams was approximately 800ft.-1000ft. from the lot.  He noted there was usable land between the lot and the juncture for filtering. Mr. McNamara found the comment interesting that by building the structure protection of the wetland would be increased.  Mr. Maynard said the end result would be better protection than what was currently in the location.  Mr. Hennessey said the roof area of the building would create impervious surface.  Mr. Maynard said they would need to control that runoff and mitigate such.  Mr. McNamara said if the building met the setback requirements it would place it closer to the WCD making the situation worse. 

 

Mr. Gowan commented if the variance was approved, the plan would go to the Planning Board for a full site plan review.  He anticipated the Planning Board would have their consultant review the engineering/drainage.  He said the applicant would also need to seek a waiver of the 30ft. building setback that applied to site plan regulations on a commercial site.  The Highway Safety Committee would also comment regarding the building access.  Mr. Gowan felt it was an appropriate process to have the applicant come before the Board. 

 

Mr. McNamara asked if the proposed building would be consistent with the same use as the existing building was being put to now.  Mr. Maynard answered yes; some sort of storage. 

 

Mr. Hennessey said with the letter being read into the record, the easiest thing would be to call for a site walk.  However, in looking at the application, it appeared to be a case study in the hardship rules.  He discussed the criteria and didn’t feel that a site walk would change the facts of the case that there was a hardship; allowing a variance would give simple justice caused by an unusual lot configuration. 

 

Mr. McNamara said given the unique configuration of the lot the proposed location for the building seemed that it was the only location it could go.  He said that coupled with the fact that the plan would have Planning Board review in terms of drainage and protection of water runoff / filtration of such, he felt there were enough safeguards to make the Board’s job easier.  From the zoning point of view, Mr. Hennessey believed the applicant made their case.  He felt the qualms he had with the case were more properly addressed at Planning. 

 

Mr. Hennessey closed the public hearing.

 

BALLOT VOTE:

 

Mr. Hennessey – Yes to all criteria

Mr. McNamara – Yes to all criteria

Mr. Molloy – Yes to all criteria

Ms. Paliy – Yes to all criteria

Mr. LaFrance – Yes to all criteria

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried.

 

 

VARIANCE GRANTED

 

Case #ZO2012-00009 -  LISTER, Carol & LEHANE. Kevin  /  79 Marsh Road – Map 28 Lot 7-135-1 – Seeking a Variance to Article III, Section 307-12, Table 1 to permit a two-family dwelling to be constructed on a lot having 67,065sqft. With 87,120sqft. Minimum required.

 

Mr. Molloy read the list of abutters aloud. There were no persons present who did not have their name read, or who had difficulty with notification.

 

Mr. Joseph Maynard of Benchmark Engineering, representing the applicant, came forward to discuss the variance request.  He said the lot contained 1.5 acres with 200ft. of frontage and had been created from a subdivision approved by the Planning Board in 1987.  The site currently had a 4-bedroom dwelling with a detached garage and was surrounded on two sides by the Pelham High School.  The soils were medium to coarse sand with deep water tables of greater than 7ft.  The site has a driveway coming into the existing garage that would be razed and the proposed duplex would be created.  Mr. Maynard included a copy of the tax map with the application that indicated there were other two and three-family dwellings that existed in the general vicinity of the parcel.  The septic system design showed that the lot could support a duplex type of use.  The septic design has received state approval.  The site is capable of supporting approximately 1,900 gallons per day; the proposed duplex use was 1,020 gallons per day. 

 

Mr. Maynard read aloud the variance criteria as provided to the Board and submitted in the application package.   

 

Mr. McNamara asked if there had been other variances requested for the property.  Mr. Maynard didn’t find any.  Mr. McNamara questioned if the 100ft. protective radius was going on to the high school land.  Mr. Maynard answered yes.  He said the state requires them to sign the well release form; but in this case its one of the driveways to the high school. 

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Mr. Walter Sikut, 73 Marsh Road, questioned if the proposed would be a separate building from the existing building.  He heard it was going to be an in-law apartment.  Mr. Maynard said it would be attached to the existing structure.  His client’s parents would be living on the other side of such.  They were requesting the duplex use because having an in-law apartment would limit the use to a family member.  The duplex would allow the unit to be rented out if something were to happen to the family member.  Mr. Maynard said the proposal was to make the property a two-family duplex use. 

 

Mr. Ed Baker, 72 Marsh Road, who had resided in Town since 1958, provided the Board with information about the neighborhood and how certain buildings had become multi-family uses.  He was against that type of use on lots with one acre, but questioned the Board if they would give him a variance to build a duplex on his one acre lot.  He felt if the use was allowed, the same instances would continue to grow.  He was against allowing such structures to get around the ruling.  Mr. Baker asked if a new septic system would be installed.  Mr. Maynard said the state law is written so that a septic system, that is able to support the proposed use, is able to have a permit.  They state doesn’t necessarily make applicants put it in at this time, they have to show that the site can support that use.  Mr. Baker said he knew the previous owners of the applicant’s home and told the Board that the septic system was installed in the late 1980’s and improved approximately seven years ago (2005/2006) over a weekend when the code officer was off duty.  He believed there was a problem at the applicant’s site and felt there should be a new state approved system installed by a certified person.  He didn’t support adding a duplex with t he current condition. 

 

Mr. Maynard replied that the site had a state approved septic design; he didn’t know the history of the current system.  He said he did the septic design as per the state requirement.  He noted that the lot contained 1.54 acres and even with putting a larger well radius the site had suitable land for loading calculation; they were at approximately 2/3 of the capacity.  He discussed the uses in the surrounding area.

 

Mr. Molloy asked if the existing home contained four bedrooms.  Mr. Maynard said the existing was a four bedroom house.  Mr. Molloy questioned how many bedrooms the proposed duplex would contain.  Mr. Maynard said the Town required a septic system be designed for a minimum of three bedrooms per side.  The existing home would remain as a four-bedroom home.  The duplex side was designed for three bedrooms.  The site was more than capable of supporting such.  Mr. Maynard said the duplex would contain two bedrooms, but the Town was having them size it for a minimum of three bedrooms. 

 

Mr. Hennessey said the Town didn’t have soil based zoning.  Over the past few months the Board heard cases being made for variances over the soil being sufficient and could handle the load.  He saw nothing in zoning that correlated variances with the load bearing capability of soils.  In his opinion, it was a criteria that made a variance more palatable if the other criteria were already met.  He felt hardship was one of the more important questions.  Mr. Hennessey drove by the applicant’s site and didn’t see the hardship.  He said the street had two-family homes, but the duplexes looked more/less like single family homes.  He said it was a single family area and a hardship would need to be shown for a variance to be granted; he didn’t see it in this case.  He said the use should continue as it was.  If the applicant wanted an in-law they should submit for a Special Exception, which was much different than a variance. 

 

Mr. McNamara said in effect, the proposed was an in-law apartment without designated it as such.  The difference was that the applicant could use it for rental income if/when the applicant’s parents were no longer living there. 

 

There was a brief discussion about the surrounding neighborhood and whether the applicant was burdened by the zoning that was in place. Mr. Hennessey said it looked like a single-family neighborhood with some non-conforming uses.  Mr. Molloy viewed the area as mixed use; there were a lot of duplexes on the street.  Mr. McNamara noted that the lot was also surrounded by the high school.  Ms. Paliy questioned if adding an in-law that wouldn’t be used for a very long time be viewed as a financial hardship.  She said it could also be viewed as a hardship to the Town by having in-law apartments rented illegally.  She said the applicant was being honest and telling the Board they would be making an investment that would only be used for a short amount of time and was thinking to the future of how it could be used.  She said in all ways in-laws became duplexes (not legally).  Ms. Paliy said she was viewing the proposal in terms of lot size and size of the addition to see if there was possibly another way for it to work for the Board.  Mr. McNamara believed Ms. Paliy’s argument could blow up the special exception in-law apartment because then anyone could come in and say they wanted rental income after the fact. 

 

Mr. Gowan said he had discussions with legal regarding in-law units that became duplexes.  He said at some point a case would go through the legal system and they’d see what the court says.  He felt the bar was high for the Town when a unit is in place, used and then rented.  He said it was hard to determine when in-laws grow into apartments.  At this point he didn’t have a clear answer for the Board. 

 

Mr. LaFrance saw the plan indicated it was a proposed duplex addition.  The concern would be that the building looked like an obvious two-family home.  He said without seeing the building design, the Board couldn’t assume that it would have the appearance of a duplex. 

 

Mr. Hennessey said if the Board was seeing the argument that there were other two-family dwellings in the neighborhood, another two-family would tip the area even further as being multi-family.  The next time an applicant comes before the Board they’ll point to this case to say it’s a two-family neighborhood.  It was Mr. Hennessey’s opinion that it wasn’t a two-family neighborhood, but by granting a variance, it would move toward it.  He discussed the position that other town’s took regarding accessory apartments versus how Pelham treats them. 

 

The Board discussed the application further.  Mr. Hennessey didn’t see a hardship since the applicant had the option of requesting a special exception.  Ms. Paliy felt the property was special because of its location to the high school; the area was becoming more crowded.  She believed the Board could use that for why the property was unique.  Mr. Hennessey noted at the time the zoning ordinance was passed for two-family residences, there were more children in the high school than currently attending. 

 

BALLOT VOTE:

 

Mr. Hennessey – 1) Yes; 2) No; 3) No; 4) Yes; 5) No

Mr. McNamara – 1) Yes; 2) No; 3) No; 4) Yes; 5) No

Mr. Molloy – Yes to all criteria

Ms. Paliy – Yes to all criteria

Mr. LaFrance – Yes to all criteria

 

VOTE:

 

(3-2-0) The motion carried.

 

 

VARIANCE GRANTED

 

Case #ZO2012-00010 – LEONARD, Paul & Russell  /  Chagnon Lane  -  Map 35 Lot 6-105 – Seeking a Variance to Article III, Sections 307-12 & 307-14 to permit the approval of two lots on an approved road with frontage of less than the required 200ft.

 

Mr. Molloy read the list of abutters aloud. There were no persons present who did not have their name read, or who had difficulty with notification.

 

Mr. Paul Leonard came forward to discuss the variance request.  He noted that the parcel had come in front of the Board July 13, 2009 when Attorney Paul DeCarolis applied for a variance for a duplex lot on a road with insufficient frontage.  He said they were seeking a variance for two lots with non-conforming frontage and to modify the existing stipulation in the prior variance regarding the subdivision of the property.  He reviewed a map of the original subdivision plan filed in 1962 with the Registry.  That plan was never acted upon.  At that time three separate parcels existed, Map 35, Lots 6-105, 6-105-1 and 6-105-2.  He explained that Attorney DeCarolis was granted a variance to combine Map 35, Lot 6-105-2 with lot 6-105 in order to gain the necessary space for the duplex lot.  Mr. Leonard said they were seeking to ‘unwind’ the combining of the two pieces to maintain the original Map 35, Lot 6-105-2, and then carve out what was initially lot 62 of the plan dating back to 1962; essentially having two single-family lots on a road with non-conforming frontage.  Their intention was to put the balance of the parcel into current use, which matches the remaining 80 acres (behind the parcel) his family owned.  He noted they would also propose that the lot lines be adjusted so as to create square shaped lots of record. 

 

Mr. Gowan spoke about the access to the lot.  He said there was a variance that allowed a single access point (that was done when the Town did ‘area’ variances); the new proposed variance wouldn’t change the restriction, but would provide the back lot to have the same access to the single-family lots that were approved through a variance as a duplex lot. 

 

Mr. Hennessey recalled walking the site in the past. 

 

Mr. Leonard said as part of the original transaction dating back to the DeCarolis variance, the Leonards memorialized a right-of-way off Chagnon Lane into their back parcel.  This was recorded in the deed and on the plan so they could maintain the access they had enjoyed over the past 50-60 years.  That same access point (right-of-way) off Chagnon Lane would be used as the access point for the proposed two lots. 

 

Mr. Leonard read aloud the variance criteria as submitted in the application to the Board.  He stated that their intention for the land being discussed was not to become developers and sell off the lots.  The intention on the back lot was for Mr. Leonard to build a home to reside in. 

 

Mr. McNamara understood that the applicant had an approval to build a duplex, but would rather build two single-family homes on two lots.  Mr. Leonard said they would like to have access to two lots.  Mr. McNamara said the previous variance had a motion/stipulation (that was agreed to) for no further subdivision of lots 6-105 and 6-105-1.  He asked Mr. Leonard if he was willing to enter into the same stipulation.  Mr. Leonard said they were seeking to ‘re-ink’ lot 62 as was originally outlined on the map.  Mr. McNamara questioned if the proposed location of the duplex would be the same area as the two single-family homes would be going.  Mr. Leonard said the duplex were proposed to be in a different location. 

 

Mr. Gowan explained that Attorney DeCarolis previously came to the Board to basically take the two old lots of record (that were platted but not brought to completion) and combine them into one.  It would be the same configuration, except Mr. Leonard wanted to also add a bit of upland, from an adjacent property, to make the two lots better than they were approved for.  In essence, the applicant was seeking to modify the previous variance (for the duplex), still having the restriction of no further development.  The applicant could have gone to the Planning Board to separate the duplex lot into two single-family lots, but the restriction for no further subdivision applied.  Mr. McNamara recalled the past concern of the abutters was water.  Mr. Leonard said they were also concerned with the character of the neighborhood if a duplex was allowed.  He believed the ‘no further subdivision’ was placed on the previous variance as a protective measure.

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Ms. Jan Fornier, 9 Chagnon Lane made the Board aware of what they had endured in the neighborhood.  She spoke about the problems occurring due to the increase in water flow. 

 

Mr. Hennessey asked if Ms. Fornier prefer if Mr. Leonard go ahead with his current right to build a duplex, or if she preferred that the Board grant the change and put two single families.  Ms. Fornier preferred the two single family lots. 

 

An abutter Mr. John Lyon, told the Board that the plan sounded good to him. 

 

Mr. Hennessey asked the Board if they wanted to conduct a site walk.  Mr. Gowan commented it was the Planning Board who needed most to see the plan, so they should be invited if one is scheduled. 

 

Mr. LaFrance said if it was coming to the Board for the first time he would want to walk the site, but the applicant wasn’t really changing much, they were splitting a duplex lot in half.  He didn’t see a need to walk the site.  Mr. Hennessey agreed. 

 

Mr. Joe Fornier, 9 Chagnon Lane felt it would be beneficial to have a site walk.  He said they had originally put together the opposition to the previous developer.  He felt the Leonards had picked a good alternative.  He was in favor of the proposal.  He was concerned with any additional development on Route 38; they were getting more water and the vegetation was dying.  Mr. Hennessey commented that there was a flood survey committee looking at the flooding situation in Town.   

 

Mr. Leonard said they sympathized with the Fornier’s position.  He said his parcel extended around the neighbors and abutted their property.  He noted anything they did to the proposed parcel would affect their own property; they were cognizant of the abutter’s concern. 

 

There was no motion for a site walk.  The Board proceeded to vote. Mr. McNamara asked if they needed to make a motion for no further subdivision.  Mr. Gowan suggested that it be memorialized in the record as it was in the former variance.  Lot line adjustments will not violate the stipulation that’s been agreed to. 

 

MOTION:

(Molloy/McNamara) To stipulate no further subdivision (lot line adjustments will not violate the stipulation that’s been agreed to).  

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried. 

 

BALLOT VOTE:

 

Mr. Hennessey – Yes to all criteria

Mr. McNamara – Yes to all criteria

Mr. Molloy – Yes to all criteria

Ms. Paliy – Yes to all criteria

Mr. LaFrance – Yes to all criteria

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried.

 

 

VARIANCE GRANTED

 

MINUTES REVIEW

 

MOTION:

(McNamara/Molloy) To approve the January 21, 2012 (site walk) and February 13, 2012 meeting minutes as written.

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried. 

 

 

MOTION:

(McNamara/Paliy) To approve the April 9, 2012 meeting minutes as amended.

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried. 

 

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

MOTION:

(Molloy/LaFrance) To adjourn the meeting.

 

VOTE:

 

(5-0-0) The motion carried. 

 

The meeting was adjourned at approximately 9:30 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

                                                                                          Charity A. Landry            

                                                                                          Recording Secretary