Category Archives: Development Review Board

Development Review Board May 24, 2021

Subject:

Minutes of Development Review Board (DRB) May 19, 2021 second session of Zoom-based hearing for natural burial ground within the Manitou project at 300 Sunset Lake Road.

Appellant Present  

Michael Mayer, representing Higher Ground Conservation Cemetery Association

Development Review Board Members Present

David Cotton Chairman; Walter Dadik, Secretary; Hendrik van Loon; Samantha Harlow

Others Present

Merle Tessier, Newfane Zoning Administrator; John and Linda Walker, abutters; Gordon and Jean Bristol, abutters; Judith A. Strom, abutter; Jane Douglas, Newfane Planning Commission, & South Newfane Cemetery Association

Supplemental Written Testimony

Michael Mayer

Background

This was a continuation of the hearing opened on April 28 and recessed until May 12.

The May 12 session was later rescheduled to May 19 because of problems using the Zoom system.

Hearing: held remotely via Zoom  from 6:30 pm to 7:48pm

Mr. Cotton said he would ask for comments from all those present.

There was considerable discussion about how responsibility for reviewing various aspects of the project is divided.  The right of way and Act 250 review were of particular interest.

Mr. Cotton noted there is disagreement about the right of way shown on the subdivision plan and asked how that would affect DRB’s decision.  Mr. Tessier said the disagreement doesn’t affect DRB or the Zoning Administrator.  It is up to the disagreeing parties resolve it.  Meanwhile, the Zoning Administrator is responsible for reviewing the subdivision plan as submitted.

Mr. Walker said he has engaged a surveyor to accurately locate the right of way.

Mr. Bristol believes Act 250 relevant yet there is no record of an application being filed.  He also asked about follow-up to make sure all requirements are met.  Mr. Mayer said he understands what is needed and preparation is well underway.

The problem of verifying all requirements have been met when responsibility is divided between several was discussed.  Mr.  Bristol said he is concerned that there is not what he considers concrete evidence that all applicable state laws and regulations are being considered and respected.  Michael Meyer said he is aware of what his project requires and will make certain the requirements are met.

Mr. Dadik said Vermont statutes do require final approval from the Board of Selectmen

and town Board of Health or equivalent before selling any plots; also, a plat showing

the location of all burial sites must be maintained and filed with the Town Clerk.

Mr. van Loon reminded he group that DRB’s responsibility is limited to matters covered by the Zoning bylaw and they are the focus of this hearing.

Mr. Mayer outlined his operational plans:

  • Minimum alteration of the area’s character
  • Concerted effort to be as non-invasive as possible to the existing landscape and forest
  • Daytime operations only
  • As little operation as possible during mud season or wintertime
  • Hand dug graves wherever possible
  • No mechanical excavating equipment stored on site

Ms. Douglas commented that cemeteries are by nature quiet and tranquil places. She also noted natural burials avoid many of the pollution problems associated with chemical embalming.

Ms. Strom said she is probably the closest neighbor to the site proposed site and sees no intrusion from the proposed burial ground.

There was discussion of parking and the ability to develop the right of way.   A 24 car parking lot accessed via a 20 foot wide right of way is proposed.  Mr. Walker questioned whether the parking lot is consistent with the area. Mr. Mayer said the parking lot sits on an area originally approved by Vermont Land Trust as a residence site which he believes would have been much more invasive.

Mr.  Dadik questioned the single lane right of way.  Mr. Mayer said the width is 20 feet which conforms to the zoning bylaw and minimizes infringement on the environment.  There is also a clear line of sight so safe passage should not be a problem.  Mr. Walker said it may not be possible to develop the full length of the right of way to a 20 foot width without serious negative environmental impact.  There was brief discussion but not enough information to resolve this point.

Mr. van Loon moved that the Board close the evidentiary portion of the hearing and enter closed deliberative session.  The motion was seconded by Ms. Harlow and unanimously passed.

Newfane Development Review Board

Walter Dadik, Secretary

Supplemental material: Written testimony by Michael Mayer, exhibit D

May 19, 2021 DRB Continuation of Public Hearing (4.28.2021) “Zoom”

Topic: DRB Continuation of Public Hearing (4.28.2021) “Zoom”
Time: May 19, 2021 06:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Newfane Development Review Board Decision January 16, 2021

Town of Newfane Development Review Board

P.O. Box 36 Newfane, VT 05345

(802) 365 7772 / Fax (802) 365 7692

January 16, 2021

 Subject:

Decision of the Development Review Board (DRB) regarding appeal of Zoning Application 20-0043

Background

Zoning Application 20-0043 is for a food takeout shed operated as a home business on a non-conforming lot at 492 Vermont Route 30 in the rural district.  The zoning administrator denied the application on November 17, 2020 and applicant appealed the decision to the Development Review Board (DRB).   The appeal was heard at a public hearing convened on December 17, 2020 and continued to January 14, 2021.   On January 14, DRB voted to allow issuance of a zoning permit for this project.

 Development Review Board Decision

Effective January 14, 2021:

Zoning permit #20-0043 is approved with the following conditions:

  1. That the food shed be situated as close as possible to the location shown on the Google map submitted in connection with this application.
  2. That the zoning administrator be notified prior to any proposed relocation of the shed.

Further, the Board specifically notes that approval of this permit constitutes granting a variance from the Newfane zoning bylaw in that the subject lot does not meet current acreage and/or setback requirements.

Findings of Law

  1. Proposed location of the shed does not comply with the Newfane Zoning Bylaw with respect to setback (35 feet proposed vs 65 feet per the bylaw) and lot area (less than 1-acre actual vs 2 acres per the bylaw).
  2. Newfane Zoning Bylaw allows home businesses and food service establishments as conditional uses in this district.

Findings of Fact

  1. The proposed location is on a main highway with some existing commercial development
  2. The applicant has developed a workable parking and traffic management plan that can be accommodated by the limited space available.
  3. The proposed use is consistent with the essential character of the neighborhood.
  4. The proposed site plan represents the least deviation from the zoning bylaw that will accommodate this project
  5. Unnecessary hardship has not been created by the applicant

 Appeal of this Decision

In accordance with Title 24 VSA, Section 4471, an interested person who has participated in the Public Hearing of this matter may appeal this decision to the Environmental Division of the Vermont Superior Court by filing a Notice of Appeal directly to the Court within thirty (30) days of the decision.

Participation in the referenced hearing shall consist of offering oral or written testimony, evidence or a statement of concern related to the subject of the hearing.

Newfane Development Review Board

David Cotton, Chairman

December 17th 2020 DRB Public Hearing Notice

The Newfane Development Review Board will hold a public hearing as a Zoom electronic meeting on Thursday, December 17, 2020 at 6:30 pm to consider appeal of the Zoning Administrator’s rejection of Zoning Permit Application 20-0043.

Applicant Alan Scott-Moncrieff is seeking approval to operate a home business providing food take-out with window service only.  The business would be located in a 48 square foot garden shed to be added to the same property as Mr. Scott-Moncrieff’s residence at 492 Vermont Route 30, parcel D-145.

The hearing will be preceded by a site visit a 3:00 pm   Facemasks must be worn and social distancing is required.  Alternately, individuals may make site visits on their own prior to the meeting.

use link below to join the hearing at 6:30 December 17th.

Join Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/j/95877620226?pwd=ODJvUDF5ZVFPMGlEYlVNZzNDczdCZz09

The application to be considered at the hearing is available for public review at the Newfane town office.   Copies may also be obtained by contacting the Newfane Administrative Assistant at:  tnewfane@newfanevt.com or 802 365 7772 extension 4 during business hours Monday thru Thursday. Participation in the public hearing portion of these proceedings is a prerequisite to the right to take any subsequent appeal.

Persons wishing to appear and be heard at the Zoom Public Hearing may do so in person, by a representative or attorney or through written comment.

 

 

 

Newfane Development Review Board

Walter Dadik, Secretary

November 23, 2020

Newfane Development Review Board Public Hearing Notice  July 30, 2020

Town of Newfane Development Review Board Public Hearing Notice

The Newfane Development Review Board will hold a public hearing as a Zoom electronic meeting on Thursday July 30, 2020 at 6:30 pm to consider appeal of the Zoning Administrator’s rejection of Zoning Permit Application 20-0001.

Applicant Kathy J. LaBombard is proposing change of use for the property at 25 Moss Hollow Road in accordance with Section 430 of the Newfane Zoning Bylaw.   The proposed change is from part time residential use to use as a wellness retreat/nature retreat.

The hearing will be preceded by a site visit at 5:00 pm.  Because of complications related to the covid-19 virus, the applicant, who resides in Massachusetts, is not expected to attend this site visit.  Attendance is optional for members of the public.   For those attending, social distancing is required and face masks must be worn.

Zoom participation in the public hearing may be by computer or telephone.  To obtain the Zoom information, e-mail or telephone the Newfane Administrative Assistant at tnewfane@svcable.net or 802 365-7772 ext 4 by July 24.

The application to be considered at the hearing is available for public review at the Newfane town office.  Copies may also be obtained by contacting the Newfane Administrative Assistant at tnewfane@svcable.net or 802 365 7772 ext 4 by July 24.

Participation in the Public Hearing portion of these proceedings is a prerequisite to the right to take any subsequent appeal.

Newfane Development Review Board

Walter Dadik, Secretary

 

Town of Newfane Development Review Board April 23, 2020

April 23, 2020

Subject

Minutes of Development Review Board (DRB) meeting held via telephone conference on April 23, 2020

Agenda

Act on a proposal that, as allowed by ACT 92, all deadlines for any permits, hearings, decisions or meetings required by law shall be extended to a date not more than 60 days from the lifting of the Governor’s COVID 19-related restrictions applying to gatherings/meetings of more than 10 people.

DRB Members Present and Voting

David Cotton, Chairman, Hendrik Van Loon, Walter Dadik

Others Present

None.   The meeting, however, was warned and notice was e-mailed to all DRB members.

Meeting

Chairman Cotton opened the meeting at 2:00 pm and noted the chair would entertain a motion to approve the proposed deadline extension.

Mr. Dadik made the following motion:

That, as allowed by ACT 92 of the Vermont Legislature, all deadlines for any permits, hearings    decisions or meetings required by law be extended to a date not more than 60 days from the      lifting of the Governor’s COVID 19-related restrictions applying to gatherings/meetings of more  than 10 people.

Mr. Van Loon seconded the motion.  There was no discussion and the motion passed by unanimous vote.

Mr. Van Loon made a motion that the meeting be adjourned. Mr. Dadik seconded the motion and Chairman Cotton adjourned the meeting at 2:09 pm

Town of Newfane, Vermont Development Review Board

Walter Dadik, Secretary

Minutes approved by attendees via mail on April 24, 2020