SOUTH HERO PLANNING COMMISSION DRAFT MINUTES January 18, 2017
Members Present: D. Patterson (Co-Chair); G. Delano (Co-Chair) by Skype; S. Gregg; D. Roy; S. Gregg
Members Absent: R. Henry
Public Present: Tim Maxham; Greta Brunswick (NRPC); Taylor Newton (NRPC); Jay Buermann; Jeff Sikora; Martha Taylor-Varney, ZA
Changes to the Agenda
NRPC – continue review of Development Regulations
[G. Delano attended the meeting via Skype]
Discussion began with Section 506 regarding non-conforming structures and uses. Greta’s intention was to simplify this section as it is confusing in its current format. Standards referring to ‘bulk’ of structures had been inadvertently added back to the regulations (they had been previously removed) to be included with height and footprint standards. A new Figure 5.2 showing various degrees of non-conformity. Commission members agreed to continue discussion on what non-conformities could be allowed under Conditional Use review by the DRB. There was additional discussion on non-conformities within the side setbacks that increase or decrease the degree on non-conformity. The issue here is volume. A new section on basements (Sec.506.C.1.a.i) included the questions – was it necessary?; under what circumstances would someone want to add a basement under a non-conforming structure?; does a basement increase ‘bulk’?; should this be treated differently from any other land development?
The Commission considered setback waivers in the Shoreland District vs. reducing the setback distances on non-conforming lots. D. Roy and S. Gregg preferred the setback waivers. The Commission members agreed to continue discussion on allowing the DRB to approve an increase in non-conformity in the Shoreland District with the use of setback waivers. Also included in the discussion of this District was the need to consider situations where there are multiple principal residential uses not meeting the definition of ‘accessory dwellings’ and the options available to bring the non-conforming uses into conformance with the regulations. The Commission members agreed to continue the discussion and consider this further.
NRPC recommended new language on the section on outdoor lighting standards that would apply to all development. The Commission agreed. An expanded section on landscaping and screening for commercial and industrial development in the Village Districts has been added. The Commission agreed to continue review and discussion of these sections. Additional language in the updates included required plans and standards for stormwater management. Jay Buermann felt the standards were too restrictive for smaller projects and suggested the DRB have the authority to waive this requirement. Taylor Newton explained that the intent was to protect neighboring properties and that a minimum standard should apply. Should a certain project size trigger the requirement for a stormwater plan? The Commission will continue to discuss.
Sections on Administration and Enforcement included the responsibilities of the Planning Commission, whether the Planning Commission can have alternates, requirements of the Administrative Officer to provide building energy standards to permit applicants, what constitutes when construction is ‘complete’?, certificates of occupancy for all structures rather than just residential, the need to add language to warnings that explains the prerequisite for participation in the hearing in order to appeal a decision, and the need to warn a combined hearing even if both Conditional Use and Site Plan review are now being heard by the same Board (DRB).
Points for additional Planning Commission discussion from this meeting:
- Setback waivers
- What non-conformities should be allowed under Conditional Use review?
- Adding ‘volume’ back to the sections on non-conforming structures
- Basements added to non-conforming structures
- Multiple principal uses on a lot
- Stormwater Plans
- Sec. 803 – Duties of the Planning Commission
[G. Delano exited the meeting.]
NRPC will next meet with the Planning Commission on February 15, 2017.
- Gregg moved to accept the minutes from the January 3, 2017 meeting; D. Roy second. All in favor.
There was none.
The ZA gave the Commission members an updated financial report on the Park and Ride. Discussion for the use of the remaining funds included landscaping, a bike rack, and sponsoring some panels at VEC’s Community Solar array in Alburgh to help offset the monthly cost of the light to the Town. Additional discussion included adding Bob Buermann to the agenda for the February 1, 2017 meeting to discuss promoting the Park and Ride.
9:26PM – S. Gregg moved to adjourn; D. Roy second. All in favor.
Martha Taylor-Varney, ZA
Signed: ________________________________________ Date: ___________________________
For the Planning Commission
These minutes are unofficial until approved at the next regularly-scheduled meeting. All motions were unanimous unless otherwise indicated.