9/10/2019 Planning Board Meeting

9/10/2019 Planning Board Meeting

Postby Maria Lajoie » Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:36 pm

(Community Meeting Room)
7:00 PM

1. Accessory Apartments: Jessica Recore, 5 Manchaug Street
2. Medicinal Alternatives, 120 Gilboa Street (SPR-170419)
3. Whitin Reservoir Estates: Removal of Rubble / Release of Covenant for Lots #2 & #3 (MOD-120906)
4. 170 West Street
5. 37 Glen Street
6. Lakeside Residential

Open session for topics not reasonably anticipated 48 hours in advance of Meeting.

Minutes: 7/9, 8/13
Future Agendas
TBD: Private Ways
TBD: Subdivision Regulations
TBD: Solar Regulations
TBD: Forms

Upcoming Meetings: 9/24, 10/8, 10/22
Maria Lajoie
Maria Lajoie
Posts: 1469
Joined: Thu May 26, 2005 11:09 am
Location: Community Development Department

Re: 9/10/2019 Planning Board Meeting

Postby Mary Wright » Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:57 pm


A meeting of the Planning Board was held on Tuesday, September 10, 2019. Mr. Marks called the meeting to order at 7:02 PM and announced that the meeting is being recorded and will be available on cable and on the website.

PRESENT: Ernest Marks (Chair), Michael Greco, Jake Schultzberg, Tracy Sharkey (Vice Chair), Aaron Socrat (arrived 7:07 PM), Les Stevens, Michael Zwicker
NON-VOTING: William Cundiff (Town Engineer)

1. Accessory Apartments: Jessica Recore, 5 Manchaug Street. Ms. Recore joined the meeting. She submitted a letter stating that the process should have been a transfer of ownership and cost $50 for a permit renewal. She moved into the home on 4/1/19, and the existing permit for the in-law apartment was good through 7/24/19. Mr. Marks stated that if a property is sold, the permit no longer exists.
Ms. Recore stated that she is not comfortable with the application fee going to a general fund. She asked for an itemized receipt as to where the money went, and if she cannot get that receipt, she would like her money back. She had been under the impression that she would be paying $390 for the application, and then she was told she had to pay more, bringing the total expense up to $510. She is requesting a refund on the base application fee.
Mr. Marks explained that all revenues for the Town go into the General Fund. Mr. Cundiff stated that the fee us used to offset overhead expenses, for example, the time staff spends reviewing an application, preparing a decision, etc.
Ms. Recore explained that her $200 was not held, and she was under the assumption that that money was going to be used to pay for the newspaper advertisement. Mr. Cundiff explained why the permit could not be done as a transfer of ownership. The fee is a general fee. Mr. Cundiff stated that Ms. Recore could have applied for a waiver of the fee. A discussion was held.
Copies of the Fee Schedule and checklist were in the packets. Ms. Recore stated that she did not receive a Fee Schedule. She presented a list of the fees she paid, which did not include the $120 that was later requested for the advertising. Ms. Sharkey does not believe that the Board has the ability to issue a refund after the fact. Mr. Cundiff stated that even if the Board voted to issue a refund, the Town Accountant could deny it. The Board suggested that that Ms. Recore contact the Town Administrator.
2. Medicinal Alternatives, 120 Gilboa Street (SPR-170419). A gentleman joined the meeting. He presented a site plan which included the cooling towers on the low roof in the back and on the bump-out and the CO2 tank. There were no elevations indicating the items on the façade.
If there is an issue with noise or odor, the Board of Health is the enforcer. Mr. Cundiff stated that odors are subjective and difficult to quantify. Noise can be measured and the Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) has regulations. Ms. Sharkey asked if remedies for such are in place. The gentleman replied that the downstairs tenant operates at 94 decibels. Medicinal Alternative’s exhaust fans do not approach that volume. The loudest equipment on that side of the building is 75 decibels. The nearest residential property line is 350’ away, and the decibel drop in that distance is approximately 40 decibels. A background study has not been done because DEP publishes what is allowed in a neighborhood, and the gentleman feels their decibels will be below the threshold. If there is a noise complaint, a housing could be placed around the equipment.
Regarding odor, all exhaust in cannabis spaces will be treated through carbon exhaust systems as per industry standard. If there is an odor complaint, they will look at the systems and their maintenance.
Scott Duncan of 106 Gilboa Street pointed out that there are multiple pieces of equipment, and therefore you need to go by more than one decibel rating. Also, the envelope business closes around 10:30 PM, whereas this equipment will be running 24/7. A gentleman in the audience replied that the operation is three shifts. A discussion was held.
Ms. Sharkey asked how can it be determined if the noise level at the property line exceeds the baseline if a baseline has not been determined. Mr. Cundiff suggested that the applicant perform a baseline study. The applicant is concerned that the baseline study will be unable to differentiate between the decibels from their equipment vs the decibels from the envelope business. The envelope company is a 24/7 hour operation and operates at much higher decibel levels. A discussion was held.
Mr. Cundiff clarified that the Building Commissioner is asking for the Board’s interpretation as to whether or not the proposed exterior improvements are within the scope of what was permitted. Mr. Marks feels that the applicant has done what the Board has asked them to do. Ms. Sharkey stated that she can accept something in writing from the DEP regarding the decibels.
It was the consensus of the Board that Mr. Cundiff should inform the Building Commissioner that the Board’s decision is that the proposed exterior improvements for Medicinal Alternatives presented this evening are within the scope of the approved permit. Any issues are the jurisdiction of Zoning and the Board of Health.
3. Whitin Reservoir Estates: Release of Covenant for Lots #2 & #3 (MOD-120906). Jennifer Gavelitz of NQOW joined the meeting. She stated that shortly before the 8/9/19 meeting, it was determined that there was sidewalk (ABC) from a Funari Corp. Worcester project dumped on the site. The Town reported that issue to the DEP. The cleanup was started on 9/4/19. Seven truckloads have been removed, with 6-7 truckloads remaining. The ABC has been pushed back farther into the parcel. The 10’ x 50’ hole needs to be backfilled once the Town gives the approval to do so. Bob Pace joined the meeting and explained what has been done and the plan going forward.
Mr. Cundiff stated that an issue between the applicant and the Town is communication. The plan was to dig several test pits to demonstrate that the material has been removed, and Mr. Cundiff was to witness the test pits. The applicant dug the trench over the weekend without Mr. Cundiff’s knowledge. Mr. Cundiff has regularly been asking for a schedule and a plan of activity. Mr. Cundiff wants to be sure the test pit is properly compacted, and there is a lot of organic material. Mr. Cundiff stated that if there is to be activity on the site, he needs a written request or summary stating what will be occurring so that he will know if he needs to go out to the site. Mr. Pace plans to backfill the pit at 8:30 AM tomorrow morning and be completed by 9/13/19. Ms. Gavelitz will confirm with Lori Funari.
Regarding the organics, there should be no organic material in the pit, it should be compacted, and Mr. Cundiff requires daily written reports for each day they are working out there.
Mr. Cundiff stated that the road of the subdivision must be swept. There is no surety for the base. Mr. Pace stated that he will sweep the road when all the ABC is gone.
Mr. Marks asked that this item be placed on the agenda for discussion for the next meeting.
Regarding a point-by-point detail for the conditions for the plan, Ms. Gavelitz stated that nothing has changed. The Board was in agreement that the applicant should start to consider the monetary contribution for the Building Permits. The applicant should be ready to discuss this at the next meeting.
4. 170 West Street. Mr. Cundiff stated that they started working on phase 1. The following have not yet been done: installation of snow fence along the property line at the entrance, and installation of “No Parking” signs on West Street. He has spoken to the developer about these items. Mr. Marks suggested that completion of these items be a condition for obtaining a Driveway Permit. The Town has a $10,000 surety for any damage done to the road.
5. 37 Glen Street. Mr. Cundiff stated that they have a plan that is acceptable in terms of the proposed grading and water elevations. The restoration will be done by the end of September. Mr. Cundiff spoke with Andy about having the restoration completed before the property transfer.
6. Lakeside Residential. Mr. Stevens stated that he and Mr. Schultzberg looked at the maps with the Central Mass. Regional Planning Commission (CMRPC) to identify areas to be proposed for Lakeside Residential. They will also look at the lots by the Whitin Reservoir Dam and on Northwest Main. The basis for inclusion in the zone was the lot size and a structure.
Mr. Cundiff asked how they can be certain that they are not missing some lots that would qualify. He suggested that CMRPC put a query into their GIS for nonconforming lots with structures, and then hone in on the ones that they want put into a Lakeside Residential zone. The goal is to put these lots into a lakeside zoning to make them more conforming. Lots that are 2 acres in size should be in that zone. Mr. Cundiff feels there is value in including more than just waterfront properties, such as Wallum Lake Terrace. For the next meeting, Mr. Stevens will add a column for Lakeside Residential to the Use Table.
7. Minutes: July 9 & August 13, 2019.
Mr. Greco made a motion to approve the July 9, 2019 Planning Board meeting minutes as amended. Mr. Socrat seconded the motion. Vote: Aye-7.
Mr. Greco made a motion to approve the August 13, 2019 Planning Board meeting minutes as amended. Mr. Socrat seconded the motion. Vote: Aye-7.

Downs Road: Jonathan Magsino of 10 Downs Road asked about the placing of monuments. Mr. Cundiff felt there was a resolution at the last meeting. Mr. Marks explained that the Board was looking to place an article on the fall Town Meeting warrant to look at budgeting annually to install some monuments. Ms. Sharkey recalled that they were going to get an estimate and request the $5,000 from the Whitin Reservoir Estates project. A discussion was held.
Mr. Cundiff asked to know which road and which properties the Board would like to do first so that he can solicit a price from a surveyor. He needs 13 bounds, and he typically budgets $1,800/bound for the surety calculations. There are many properties in Town that lack monuments. Ms. Sharkey suggested starting at the corner of South Street and Downs Road, up to Manzi Way. Mr. Cundiff stated that there are 10 bounds on half of Downs Road. It was the consensus of the Board to seek quotes for installation of 10 bounds and 4 bounds on Downs Road. This item will be on the agenda for discussion at the next meeting.

Solar Regulations: Mr. Stevens asked that the Board start to work on the solar regulations. The Board was in agreement. Mr. Cundiff will start to gather sample regulations.

Residential Compound: Mr. Stevens stated that he and Mr. Cundiff discussed that, like a flexible development, a residential compound would use 150% - a 3 acre lot, as the base number, and then they could shrink it down. Mr. Cundiff prefers a paved road instead of a gravel road. A residential compound would be similar to a cluster development, except the roadway would be paved. Ms. Sharkey suggested keeping the calculation of square footage and 50’ of frontage the same, and give a bonus for paving the drive. A discussion was held.

Mr. Cundiff stated that the surety for the McIntyre gravel pit at Northeast Main expires 10/1/19. He has heard from an abutter that they are removing gravel. He has asked the Zoning Enforcement Officer to look into that. The permit has expired, and they may have gone beyond the permit limits. The Town is waiting for them to restore the site and, since 2003, the Board has not required restoration. Mr. Marks stated that they should cease operations or come in for a new permit. The Board authorized Mr. Cundiff to meet with Mr. Palmer and ask him to submit a definitive schedule, including renewal of the surety, to get this done this year. If it does not get done this year, they need to start pulling the bond. Mr. Marks asked Mr. Cundiff to tell them if they cannot get it done by 10/1/19, that they need a new surety.

ZBA Application: Mr. Zwicker stated that the applicants are proposing to build a detached garage and they are asking for a variance for the front set back on a 0.37 acre lot. A discussion was held. The Board had no objection to the application.

Ms. Sharkey made a motion to adjourn the Planning Board meeting at 9:12 PM. Mr. Greco seconded the motion. Vote: Aye-7.

Respectfully submitted,

Mary Wright
Recording Secretary
Mary Wright
Posts: 609
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 8:56 pm

Return to 2019 Planning Board Meetings

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest