Board Members Present: Robert Hiscox, Gil Graveline, Alan Havican, Donald Pomeroy and Thomas Galvin
Alternates Present: None
Others Present: Bill Donovan, Land Use Inspector
Members Absent: Francis Carpentier (Alt.), Anthony Parrella (Alt.) and Alexander Delelle (Alt.)
Chairman Robert Hiscox called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. The meeting was taped.
Approval of Minutes: Motion by D. Pomeroy, seconded by G. Graveline to approve the minutes of the January 5, 2005 meeting as presented. Unanimous.
1. Letter dated January 13, 2005 from Carmody & Torrance Re: Fulling Mill Ridge Subdivision, Robert Knapp – Final Reduction of the Executed Site Improvement Bond.
2. Memorandum: 011405 from the Council of Governments of the Central Naugatuck Valley Re: Requirements for Open Space in Subdivision Regulations.
3. Memorandum: 011405 from the Council of Governments of the Central Naugatuck Valley Re: Roberts Rules of Order for Small Assemblies.
4. Letter dated January 19, 2005 with Attached Photos from Patrick & Janice Cranney Re: McAllen Residence – 52 Sherwood Drive.
Chairman Hiscox directed Bill Donovan to investigate the alleged zoning violations noted in the letter from Mr. & Mrs. Cranney and report back to the Commission at the next meeting. Motion by A. Havican, seconded by T. Galvin to accept the correspondence. Unanimous.
Public Participation: None
7:15 p.m. – Michael & Christine McAllen, 32 Sherwood Drive. Application for a Special Permit for Elderly Housing – 170 Scott Road. The public hearing was continued from January 5, 2005. Chairman Hiscox read a review of the proposed project dated January 18, 2005 from Chesprocott Health District. The Commissioners reviewed a revised site plan map showing proposed parking, dumpster area, lighting, emergency vehicle access and recreation areas. There were no comments from the public. Motion by G. Graveline, seconded by D. Pomeroy to close the public hearing for a special permit for elderly housing at 170 Scott Road. Unanimous.
The Commissioners reviewed a Draft Resolution of Approval prepared by Bill Donovan for this application. D. Pomeroy questioned the applicants regarding the dates noted on the revised site plan and noted that there was no signature or seal from a licensed engineer on the map. After discussion with the McAllens, the Commissioners were satisfied to have the McAllen’s place their original signatures on the file copy of the approved site plan. It was noted for the record that in the Commission’s judgment, the subject project complies with the criteria set forth under Section 12.10 – Special Findings of the Prospect Zoning Regulations. Motion by D. Pomeroy, seconded by T. Galvin to approve the Draft Resolution of Approval for a special permit for elderly housing at 170 Scott Road as presented. Unanimous.
7:24 p.m. – Herwood & Cecilia Cochran, 14 Cook Road. Application for a 2-lot Re-subdivision. The public hearing was continued from December 15, 2004. Chairman Hiscox noted a letter dated December 16, 2004 from Mr. & Mrs. Cochran granting a 30-day extension for the public hearing. It was noted for the record that a site walk was conducted on January 15, 2005. Jim Muthig represented the applicants and submitted a corrected site plan with an appropriate signature and seal. Chairman Hiscox asked whether the applicant’s engineer was in attendance as requested at the previous meeting. Cecilia Cochran stated that her engineer was not available to be in attendance. Mr. Muthig stated that the applicant would like to request a continuance to the next scheduled meeting in order to consult with their attorney regarding a letter submitted by Bill Donovan to the Planning & Zoning Commission outlining a legal opinion from the Town Attorney regarding this application. Chairman Hiscox read the letter submitted by Bill Donovan indicating that, in the Town Attorney’s opinion, the proposed new rear lot that does not have a variance allowing a reduction of the minimum area would not have the required minimum lot size of 60,000 square feet. Chairman Hiscox stated for the record and for the applicant’s information that the Commission would be concerned with the issue of creating non-conforming lots which would not be allowed under the Regulations. Chairman Hiscox also noted his disappointment that the applicant’s engineer was not in attendance to answer technical questions regarding the site plan. The hearing was opened to comments from the public. Ann & Louis Stein, 22 Cook Road, stated their opposition to the proposed re-subdivision citing non-compliance with the Regulations and submitted documentation supporting their opinion. Eric Koch, 75 Salem Road, stated concerns with granting variances to allow additional development on non-conforming properties could place a burden on the infrastructure of the Town. D. Pomeroy stated for the record and for Mr. Koch’s information that the Planning & Zoning Commission does not grant variances. Carolyn Taylor, 54 Cook Road, and Steve Sachter, 192 Cook Road, stated that the application should be denied because it would create a non-conforming lot that would not comply with the Zoning Regulations. Jim Muthig submitted copies of Court documents detailing the lawsuit that prevented the Cochran’s from submitting an application to the Commission prior to the new Regulations being enacted. The Commissioners stated that the Cochrans had from April 2003 through December 2003 to submit an application under the old Regulations. Mrs. Cochran stated that she was working within that time period to prepare all necessary testing and documentation required to be presented with the application. There were no further comments from the public. The hearing was continued to February 2, 2005 at 7:10 p.m.
8:05 p.m. – Prospect Estates, LLC, 66 Smoke Rise Circle. Application for a 7-Lot Subdivision – Prospect Estates (Phase I), 193 & 193R Cook Road. Chairman Hiscox read the notice of public hearing as it appeared in the Republican American on January 7th & 14th, 2005. It was noted for the record that a site walk was conducted on January 15, 2005. Correspondence received and read into the record: 1) Letter dated 12/8/04 from Cathy Clouse, 1142, Sperry Rd., Cheshire; 2) Letter dated 12/16/04 from Patti Audette, 120 Roaring Brook Rd., Prospect; 3) Letter dated 12/6/04 from Loretta & William Pocock, 1266 East St., Southington; 4) Letter dated 11/4/04 from Karen Benson, 305 Center St., West Haven; 5) Letter dated 12/13/04 from South Central Connecticut Regional Water Authority. Bill Donovan submitted a review dated January 18, 2005 from the Town’s reviewing engineer, Scott Poryanda, of Connecticut Consulting Engineers. Linette Turnquist, a professional engineer with Juliano Associates, represented the applicant and submitted proof of notification to abutting property owners within 200 feet of the subdivision. Ms. Turnquist presented the application for a proposed 7-lot subdivision in a residential zone on Cook Road. There is one existing house with access from Cook Road. Lots 2 & 7 would access off of Cook Road also. The proposed subdivision would create 550 linear feet of new road ending in a cul-de-sac. The applicant is proposing a combined driveway for Lots 5 & 6 with access off of the new road to minimize disturbance to wetlands. All lots will be serviced by private wells and septic systems. Chesprocott has reviewed the application and the Inland Wetlands Commission is currently reviewing the proposal. A detention pond will be located at the end of the cul-de-sac for storm water runoff. The applicant received a copy of the comments from the Town’s Reviewing Engineer and Public Works and will be addressing their concerns. Chairman Hiscox stated for the public that the applicant had presented a preliminary review of the proposed subdivision at an earlier meeting. The Commissioners agreed that open space requirements would be addressed with Phase II of the proposed development. The hearing was opened to comments from the public. Patricia Geary, 31 Lee Road, noted concerns with availability of drinking water from neighboring wells, wetlands disturbance and increased traffic on Cook Road when both phases of the subdivision are completed. Eric Koch, 75 Salem Road, stated a concern with putting off addressing open space until Phase II. Mary Jane Daloia, 198 Cook Road, cited safety issues she currently has at her location regarding traffic and stated concerns with the location of the proposed new road. Ann & Louis Stein, 22 Cook Road, stated concerns with additional traffic and the impact additional houses could have on the education budget for the Town. There were no further comments from the public. The public hearing was continued to February 2, 2005 at 7:30 p.m.
a. Gazmen Murtishi, 62 Bayview Circle, Wolcott, CT. Application for a Special Permit for a Used Car Dealer & Repair Facility – 123 Union City Road. The public hearing on this application was closed on January 5, 2005. The Commissioners reviewed the Draft Resolution of Approval as prepared by Bill Donovan. Chairman Hiscox noted that Item 3 of the Resolution specifically addresses the Commissions concerns that there will be no flags, signs or banners being displayed on vehicles or the building. It was noted for the record that in the Commission’s judgment, the subject project complies with the criteria set forth under Section 12.10 – Special Findings of the Prospect Zoning Regulations. Motion by G. Graveline, seconded by T. Galvin to approve the Draft Resolution of Approval as presented for a special permit for a used car dealer and repair facility at 123 Union City Road. Unanimous.
a. Marshall Converse, 70 Seaside Avenue, Milford, CT. Application for a Change in Use/ Industrial – 123 Union City Road. Raymond Brennan, owner of 123 Union City Road, and Marshall Converse of Converse Woodworking, Inc., presented an application for a change in use within the existing industrial building at 123 Union City Road for manufacturing and assembly of furniture and related products. The Commissioners reviewed the site plan including proposed parking, lighting and signage. Motion by G. Graveline, seconded by A. Havican to accept and approve the application for a change in use for manufacturing and assembly of furniture and related products for property located at 123 Union City Road. Unanimous.
b. CJN Realty, LLC, 115 Waterbury Road. Application for a Special Permit for Construction of a Commercial Building Housing Professional Offices and Services. Attorney Edward Fitzpatrick and Steve Guidice, professional engineer, represented the applicant and presented a plan for a 14,000 square foot building on 2.3 acres to house professional offices and services on the main level and warehouse storage in the basement. The Commissioners asked that the applicant provide a listing of the types of storage being proposed in the basement. The building would be serviced by city water and septic system. A total of 46 parking spaces are being proposed. The Inland Wetlands Commission is currently reviewing an application. Discussion was held on appropriate fees due. Fees will be paid prior to the public hearing. Motion by A. Havican, seconded by D. Pomeroy to accept the application for a special permit for construction of a commercial building for property located at 115 Waterbury Road and set a public hearing for February 2, 2005 at 8:00 p.m. Unanimous.
c. Jerry Gibson, 47 Morris Road. Application for Earth Deposition & Re-grading Activities. Jerry Gibson reviewed a site plan for filling and re-grading his property at 47 Morris Road. Mr. Gibson stated that the filling has already been completed on his property but that he was unaware that a permit was necessary. Mr. Gibson wishes to address any concerns the Commission may have and obtain the proper permit for these activities. Bill Donovan referred the Commissioners to Section 4 of the Regulations – Earth Excavation, Deposition and Re-Grading, which requires a zoning permit for re-grading activities when more than 400 total yards of fill is brought in. Mr. Gibson is required to present a site plan indicating that the activities will not impact neighboring properties. The total amount of fill brought onto Mr. Gibson’s exceeds 400 cubic yards. Bill Donovan stated that a slope of 3 to 1 or a retaining wall be required on the northerly boundary of Mr. Gibson’s property to prevent soil from eroding onto the abutting property. B. Donovan stated that Mr. Gibson’s site plan shows that appropriate measures are being taken to prevent such erosion. G. Graveline confirmed with the applicant that storm water would not drain towards the street. Motion by D. Pomeroy, seconded by T. Galvin to accept and approve the application for earth deposition and re-grading activities for property located at 47 Morris Road. Unanimous.
d. 2005 – 2006 Proposed Budget. Chairman Hiscox reviewed the current Planning & Zoning Budget and suggested an increase for Review of P & Z Regulations in the amount of $1000.00 in order to make necessary technical changes to the Regulations. The proposed 2005 – 2006 Proposed Budget would be as follows: 5600-00, Engineer, $7000.00; 5600-01, Clerk/Clerical Asst., $5000.00; 5600-02, Supplies, $200.00; 5600-03, Meetings & Seminars, $350.00; 5600-04, Review Plan. Dev. & PZ Regs., $3,000.00. The total proposed budget would be $15,550.00. Motion by T. Galvin, seconded by A. Havican to submit a total proposed budget for the Planning & Zoning Commission for 2005-2006 in the amount of $15,550.00 as discussed. Unanimous. Chairman Hiscox stated his cover letter to the Mayor would indicate that the Commission fully supports changing the part-time clerical assistant in the Land Use Office to a full-time position. D. Pomeroy stated it should be understood that a full-time clerical assistant in the Land Use Office would be dedicated to land use issues, not splitting time helping with duties for other offices.
b. Zoning Enforcement. Chairman Hiscox indicated that storage pods have appeared in Town and suggested that the process for technical amendments to the Regulations be started at the second meeting in February. Chairman Hiscox stated that he met with Bill Donovan to review the listing of zoning enforcement actions and asked Bill to prepare an update with specific dates for the Commissioners. The Commission will review the update and discuss with Bill the timetable for fines being imposed for zoning violations.
c. Amendment to Prospect Zoning Regulations – Storage Pods & Technical Changes. No discussion was held regarding specific amendments.
Land Use Inspector’s Report: Bill Donovan stated that the Commissioners should be aware that a resident who was issued a Cease & Desist for zoning violations concerning commercial vehicles in a residential area has indicated that an appeal will be made to the Zoning Board of Appeals for relief similar to a previous application approved by the Zoning Board of Appeals for John Schieffer. The Commissioners agreed that the Planning & Zoning Commission and Bill Donovan would continue to enforce the Regulations in an appropriate and equitable manner. Bill indicated that he has contacted a Marshall to serve a fine for a zoning violation at the full amount of $150.00 per day. Chairman Hiscox asked Bill to provide a copy to the P & Z Chairman and/or the Commission of any issuance of fines and/or Cease and Desist letters. Motion by T. Galvin, seconded by G. Graveline to accept the Land Use Inspector’s Report. Unanimous.
Public Participation: Attorney Edward Fitzpatrick, John Mancini of BL Company and Bob Robertson of Toll Brothers reviewed a proposal for a 55 and older project to be located in the Commerce Park Zone off of Scott Road. The property is approximately 179 acres. Attorney Fitzpatrick, Mr. Mancini and Mr. Robertson have met with Town Staff and revised the plans in an effort to reduce disturbance to wetland areas while still maintaining a viable project. It is anticipated that land coverage would be less than 33% leaving approximately two thirds to open space. Some issues still need to be worked out regarding set offs and the length and height of proposed units. The applicants will be asking the Commission for reconsideration of the requirement that 30% of the units be designated as affordable housing due to the size of the project. Also, the affordable housing units being proposed are multi-story units that would exceed the maximum 35-foot height restriction. Attorney Fitzpatrick asked if consideration could be given to allowing a design that would be consistent with a suburban type corporate park development as this property is located within a commerce park zone, not a typical residential neighborhood. The project is scheduled to be serviced by city water from Route 69 via Maria Hotchkiss Road, however the Connecticut Water Company may allow the city of Waterbury to provide water service. The applicant would be seeking approval from the City of Waterbury for sewer connection. Bob Robertson described a similar project being developed currently by Toll Brothers. The Commission suggested that the Fire Marshall be consulted regarding this project, particularly addressing the height of the units. Attorney Fitzpatrick indicated that they would be requesting some minor amendments to the Regulations in relation to this application.
Motion by A. Havican, seconded by T. Galvin to adjourn the meeting at 10:00 p.m. Unanimous.
Robert Hiscox, Chairman