Planning Commission Bylaws Hearing 6/30/16 Unapproved Minutes

Thursday June 30, 2016
Planning Commission: Melissa Laurita Kohl, Geoff Sewake, Rene Jolly, Marilyn Magnus
Clerk to the Board: Melissa Laurita Kohl
Public: Alison Low from NVDA, Mike Bruton, John Reiss, Joel Wright, Rick Scholes, Annette Lorraine, Tim McKay
The meeting was called to order by Chair of the Board Geoff Sewake at 7:01PM.
  1. Geoff reviewed the “Major Changes” document prepared by the Planning Commission detailing the significant suggested changes to the bylaws.
  2. Geoff told the public that each person had five minutes to speak and he encouraged each person present to give input.
  3. Rick presented an edited copy of the bylaws, edited for punctuation, tense, and content. He highlighted his major concerns:
    1. The definition is farming is very inclusive and farming is protected by the State. Rick is concerned by the fact that people would be able to take advantage of and abuse this language.
    2. Accessory Dwelling Units are listed in both the permited and conditional uses.
    3. Allowable Uses are not defined and listed.
    4. The combined definitions from flood hazard regulations and the bylaws are clumsy and need some work.
    5. The Planning Commission suggested that sheds under 100 square feet not be subject to a permit. Rick said that currently structures 24 square feet or larger affect the appraisals of properties and permits are the only way that the listers find out about these properties.
    6. Different words are used to describe the same thing or same role and should be changed to one word for consistency (examples include “Zoning Administrator” and “Zoning Regulations”).
    7. There are too many definitions – not all of the words are used in the document.
  4. John Reiss said:
    1. that under RD and VD schools are listed as permitted uses but he would like to see them moved back to conditional uses as they can really effect the character of a neighborhood.
    2. Subdivision should not require a formal survey for a conditional use review as it is a financial hardship and a permit is not guaranteed.
    3. John is wondering if the 30 feet maximum height is too restrictive. He suggested up to 60 feet, but as a compromise, maybe 40 feet.
  5. Joel Wright:
    1. Lives in VD and is concerned about the reduction of lot size requirements from 1 acre to ½ acre. He does not want the character of the historic village to change as that is why he moved to Peacham. Alison said that most of the village is also in the Agricultural Overlay, which has a 2 acre minimum that supercedes the VD zone guidelines.
  6. Annette Lorraine
    1. Annette wanted to know how Shoreland 1 and 2 were determined. She is concerned because despite the State Shoreland Act and the restrictions in the bylaws, multiple neighbors are disregarding the bylaws and the State Shoreland Act. There is no significant enforcement and other residents on the pond are upset to see it happen.
  7. Bob Hansen would like to see a penalty clause for building before getting a permanent as this is something that happens somewhat regularly. He thinks a higher fee for the permit would be appropriate.
Marilyn moves to adjourn at 8:10PM. Rene seconds. So moved.