THESE MINUTES ARE PRESENTED IN DRAFT FORM AND HAVE NOT
BEEN FORMALLY APPROVED BY THE ENFIELD PLANNING AND
ZONING COMMISSION. OFFICIAL COPIES OF MINUTES, WHEN APPROVED,
CAN BE OBTAINED FROM THE TOWN CLERK OR PLANNING OFFICE.
ENFIELD PLANNING AND ZONING COMMISSION
MINUTES OF A REGULAR MEETING
MARCH 1, 2012
A Regular Meeting of the Enfield Planning and Zoning Commission was held on Thursday, March 1, 2012 in the Council Chambers, Enfield Town Hall, 820 Enfield Street, Enfield, Connecticut. Chairman Duren called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.
Commissioner Falk took the roll.
PRESENT: Chairman Charles Duren and Commissioners Lori Longhi, Charles Ladd, Jr., Peter Falk, Elizabeth Ballard, Nicles Lefakis, Alan Drinan, and Dominic Alaimo (arrived at 7:45).
ALSO PRESENT: José Giner, AICP, Director of Planning and Kathleen DeGray, Recording Secretary.
ABSENT: Commissioners Kathleen Sarno and Ronald Gregory, Sr.
Commissioner Alaimo arrived at 7:45 and will be voting for absent Commissioner Sarno. Commissioner Drinan voted for Commissioner Sarno during Commissioner Alaimo’s absence.
FIRE EVACUATION ANNOUNCEMENT
Chairman Duren made the fire evacuation announcement.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
February 13, 2012 Special Meeting – Solar Energy Field Trip
Commissioner Ballard made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Lefakis, to approve the minutes of the February 13, 2012 Special Meeting.
The motion was carried with a 7-0-0 vote.
February16, 2012 PZC Regular Meeting
Commissioner Ballard made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Lefakis, to approve the Minutes of the February 16, 2012, PZC Regular Meeting as amended.
The motion was carried with a 7-0-0 vote.
Amendments to the minutes are as follows: Page 12, Paragraph 2, Line 4, change utilities to companies; Line 5, change utilities to uses; Page 20, third paragraph up from the bottom, Line 3, change fids to finds; Page 22 Paragraph 1, Line 3, change fids to finds; Page 23, second paragraph up from the bottom, Line 2, change industrialization to commercialization.
a. Town Attorney (In Writing)
Chairman Duren asked if anyone had any questions for the Town Attorney through Mr. Giner. There were none.
Chairman Duren mentioned The Villages, LLC v. Enfield PZC (PH #2681), which is scheduled for a pretrial on March 2, 2012. He asked Mr. Giner if he had heard anything. Mr. Giner said he has not heard anything, but he will try and find out what happened before the next meeting.
b. Zoning Enforcement Officer (In Writing)
Chairman Duren asked if anyone had any questions for Ms. Higley through Mr. Giner. There were none.
c. Property Maintenance (In Writing)
There was no Property Maintenance Report available. Mr. Giner said he would find out why and hoped to have a report for the next meeting.
d. Director of Planning (In Person)
Mr. Giner told the Commission that the Town Council has invited the PZC, the ZBA, and the IWWA to a meeting that will take place Monday, March 5, at 5:30, in the Enfield Room, to discuss the recommended Fines Ordinances for both Planning and Zoning and Wetlands. Mr. Giner said he sent everybody an email informing them of this meeting and attaching the final copy of the Fines Ordinance that has been reviewed and approved by the Town Attorney.
Mr. Giner next talked about UConn’s CLEAR (Center for Land Use Education and Research) and the advanced and basic training programs that are being offered. He told the Commissioners that there was money in the PZC budget for professional development activities, and to let him know if anybody wanted to attend any of the upcoming sessions.
Mr. Giner reminded the Commission that the next PZC meeting on March 15th would be the annual federation workshop to be held in Southington. He said he would send everyone an email as a reminder and to discuss carpooling.
Mr. Giner referenced the Special PZC Meeting tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, March 21st to take care of any outstanding business, because there will not be another regular meeting until April 5th.
Chairman Duren said if the Commission could finish the Solar Regulations tonight, that the special meeting may not be necessary. Mr. Giner said there were a few applications to be received, but it was up to the Commission whether or not they wanted to have the special meeting.
Mr. Giner next mentioned training that the Commission has been trying to get set up with the Town Attorney’s office. Mr. Giner said that the Council Chambers is available on March 29th and that he spoke with the Town Attorney’s office and a combined workshop for PZC, ZBA, and IWWA could be scheduled for this date.
Chairman Duren asked if this was with the Town Attorney or was it what the Commission asked for, with one of the outside attorneys offering this training at no charge. Mr. Giner said that the Town Attorney could make the arrangements to have other people come. Mr. Giner asked the Commissioners if they had any specific questions they would like answered. Chairman Duren said he had no questions, but that he had been to sessions provided by Attorney Byrnes in the past and he was hoping to have the same type of thing.
Mr. Giner said that it is protocol to have these arrangements made by going through the Town Attorney’s office. Chairman Duren said as long as the Town Attorney was arranging to have Attorney Byrnes or someone from the Bar Association come in that was fine. Mr. Giner said if the Commission wanted to have someone from the outside come in to do the training that was up to them. Commissioner Longhi pointed out that the Commission had been asking for something to be scheduled with Attorney Byrnes or the Bar Association for quite some time.
Mr. Giner said he would book the room for the 29th and have the Town Attorney set something up. Chairman Duren said to see what the Town Attorney arranges and then determine if it will meet the Commission’s needs.
Mr. Giner next referenced the Pending Project Status spreadsheet that he created for the PZC. He pointed out that the spreadsheet identifies which projects have been administratively approved, which have been started or not yet started, which are ongoing, which are partially complete or in progress, and which are completed. Other status information, such as waiting for State Liquor Control Commission, is also included. Mr. Giner explained that once a project was completed, it would remain on the spreadsheet for one more meeting, and then it would be removed.
Chairman Duren mentioned to Mr. Giner that the Royal Buffet sign is still up in Big Y Plaza, and Bernie’s, which has been gone for some time, still has signage up that can be easily seen from the highway. Mr. Giner said that he would talk with Ms. Higley to see what is going on with these and ask her to send something to both parties if she has not done so already.
Commissioner Drinan asked Mr. Giner if the only reason for the March 21st special meeting was to discuss and finish Solar Regulations. Mr. Giner said Solar Regulations and any Site Plan Reviews.
The Commissioners agreed that if the Solar Regulations could be finalized tonight, there would be no need for a special meeting on the 21st.
Mr. Giner next referenced a memorandum to CRCOG from The Town of East Windsor Director of Planning and Development discussing proposed changes to the Plan of Conservation and Development and Zoning Regulations regarding Route 140 development. Mr. Giner provided Commission members with a copy of the memo and the proposed changes for their information and review, as the Town of East Windsor borders Enfield. Chairman Duren thanked Mr. Giner for staying on top of this and for providing the information to the Commission. He asked the Commissioners to take the packet home and review it to see if there were any questions or concerns about the impact of the proposed changes on Enfield. He asked the Commissioners to refer any questions to Mr. Giner. Mr. Giner said he would do his best to get answers to any questions the Commissioners had after reviewing the packet. Mr. Giner said that the hearing for the East Windsor changes is sometime in April. Chairman Duren said that someone from PZC might need to go.
Chairman Duren opened the floor for public participation. No one came forward to address the Commission
Chairman Duren referenced the following correspondence:
CLEAR Land Use Academy Spring 2012 Schedule; the Town of East Windsor packet previously discussed; CRCOG Summary of Zoning, Subdivision and POCD Referrals Received Report – Chairman Duren mentioned the addition of three proposed changes in South Windsor; Minutes of the IWWA February 7, 2012 regular meeting; CLEARscapes’ Winter 2012 Newsletter detailing their Geospatial Training Program (GTP); and a letter from Gary Williams, 14 Cranbrook Boulevard, asking to be put on the agenda for an informal discussion regarding the zoning classification of 14 Cranbrook Boulevard;
Chairman Duren asked Mr. Giner if he had met with Mr. Williams. Mr. Giner said he had, and that there are a few possibilities Mr. Williams would like to run past the Commission. Mr. Giner said that there are really no clear-cut solutions to Mr. Williams’ problem. Most of what has been done along Cranbrook Boulevard has been done by variance. Mr. Williams is in a Business Local Zone, and what he is looking to do is not allowed as one of the uses. He is not large enough to be considered Business Regional. There is not an easy solution, and he would like to find out what options may be available. Chairman Duren said it sounds like the only real option available would be for the Commission to change the Zoning Regulations. Mr. Giner said that is true, and Mr. Williams wanted to come in to discuss that option. Chairman Duren said that the Commission seems to get a lot of specific requests to change the Zoning Regulations, and something like this is really spot zoning. Mr. Giner said that State Legislation allows for individuals to come in for informal discussions that are non-binding to the Commission.
The Commissioners agreed to have Mr. Williams come before the Commission for an informal discussion, limited to 15 minutes, at the April 5, 2012 PZC meeting.
There was no Commissioner’s correspondence.
There were no bond releases on tonight’s agenda.
PUBLIC HEARINGS – CONTINUED FROM FEBRUARY 16, 2012
a. PH #2733 – Special Use Permit/Site Plan review to allow the reconstruction of a non-conforming barn destroyed by natural causes and to permit a construction operation for premises located in an Industrial District at 463 Taylor Road, Map 100, Lot 9, Jeffrey R. Starr Real Estate, LLC, applicant/owner.
Chairman Duren recused himself from this hearing. Commissioner Ballard, Vice Chair, ran the hearing. Commissioner Drinan is sitting in and voting for recused Chairman Duren.
Commissioner Falk took the Roll. Present were: Commissioners Lori Longhi, Charles Ladd, Jr., Peter Falk, Elizabeth Ballard, Nicles Lefakis, and Alan Drinan. Absent were: Chairman Duren (recused), Commissioners Kathleen Sarno, Dominic Alaimo and Ronald Gregory, Sr.
Commissioner Ballard read the following letter from Dana Steele, P.E., J.R. Russo & Associates, LLC, to Mr. Giner, dated February 28, 2012, into the record:
Re: Jeffrey Starr – 463 Taylor Road (PH#2733)
Jeffrey Starr has decided to withdraw the above-referenced special permit application. Please thank the Planning and Zoning Commission for their input. The applicant intends to further investigate alternative development options and looks forward to submitting a new application in the future.
If you have any questions, I can be reached at 860-623-0569.
Dana Steele, P.E.
J.R Russo & Associates, LLC
Commissioner Drinan made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Longhi, to accept the withdrawal of PH #2733 – Special Use Permit/Site Plan review to allow the reconstruction of a non-conforming barn destroyed by natural causes and to permit a construction operation for premises located in an Industrial District at 463 Taylor Road, Map 100, Lot 9, Jeffrey R. Starr Real Estate, LLC, applicant/owner.
The motion was carried with a 6-0-0 vote.
b. PH XZA #11-26 – Proposed Amendment to the Zoning Regulations to provide standards for permitting small-scale and large scale solar energy systems, Town of Enfield Planning Department, applicant.
Commissioner Falk took the Roll. Present were: Chairman Charles Duren and Commissioners Lori Longhi, Charles Ladd, Jr., Peter Falk, Elizabeth Ballard, Nicles Lefakis, and Alan Drinan. Absent were: Commissioners Kathleen Sarno, Dominic Alaimo and Ronald Gregory, Sr.
Chairman Duren said that the Commissioners received the proposed amendments to the Solar Regulations draft at the February 16 meeting for their review. Tonight the Commission will go section by section to make any needed changes. The Commission hopes to finalize the regulations tonight.
Chairman Duren went through the proposed regulations section by section, asking the Commissioners if they had any comments, questions, and/or suggested changes:
Section 8.80 Solar Energy Systems, Sections A and B: No changes
Sections 8.80.1 Small Scale Solar Energy System and 188.8.131.52 Energy – No changes
Section 184.108.40.206: Chairman Duren referenced the very end of the paragraph where (Application) is referenced. He asked why it reads, has received a complete Interconnection Request (“Application”), and not a complete Interconnection Request approval. Mr. Giner said that Mr. Herz explained to him that it might take months for the energy company to approve the connection; their timetable may not coincide with the Commissions’. There needs to be an application or some form of acknowledgement that the Interconnection has been applied for. Nothing can go forward without the electric company approving it, which takes considerable time. The Commission would just need proof that a complete Interconnection Application has been applied for.
It was agreed to leave Section 220.127.116.11 as is.
18.104.22.168: Chairman Duren referenced section a, the very last sentence. He said that side yard, as referenced, could go all the way to the street, and said this wasn’t specific enough. Mr. Giner agreed, and suggested specifying the side yard “behind the front building line”, rather than just “side yard”.
The Commissioners agreed to this change.
Next discussed was 22.214.171.124, part b. Commissioner Lefakis referenced the arborvitae or similar evergreen hedge planted six feet on center. He said that there is no reference to height. Mr. Giner explained that there is a separate section of the PZC Regulations that states that any required evergreens must be at least six feet tall. Mr. Giner said that he tried to avoid repeating what was already in the regulations as much as possible. Height of evergreens is addressed under Landscaping Standards, Section 10.20; he did not think it was necessary to address it again here.
Chairman Duren said that the “planted six feet on center” is a repeat of the existing regulations, so why not height. Mr. Giner read a portion of Section 10.20, Landscaping Standards, for the Commission. He said that the six feet on center is not specifically mentioned as a standard, but the height requirement of six feet is.
Chairman Duren asked what the consensus of the Commissioners was. Commissioner Ballard suggested saying six feet on center and six feet tall. Mr. Giner again stated that the height requirement is specified in the regulations already and does not need to be restated. Regulation 10.20, Landscaping Standards, which includes a height requirement of six feet for evergreen trees, will apply to solar energy systems.
The Commission agreed to leave Section 126.96.36.199, part b. as is.
Section 188.8.131.52, parts a – f: No changes.
Section 184.108.40.206 – Roof Mounted Small Solar Energy Systems: Commissioner Longhi said that she brought in a photograph of a roof-mounted system she saw in Coventry and there were an odd number of panels. She said it didn’t look right, and maybe an even number of panels should be required for aesthetic reasons.
The photograph was passed among the Commissioners.
Commissioner Ladd pointed out that some applicants may only need one panel, and this would be an odd number.
Commissioner Lefakis said it might make more sense to regulate the shape of the array of panels, rather than the specific number of panels. He suggested stating that they should be arranged in a square or rectangular pattern or array.
The Commission agreed to add part d. to Section 220.127.116.11, which will read “Roof top panels shall be configured in a square or rectangular pattern.”
Commissioner Lefakis brought up wall-mounted solar panels and asked if this was something that would be included in the regulations. Mr. Giner said this was talked about and it was decided that wall-mounted panels were very rare and could be treated on a case-by-case basis. Commissioner Ladd said it was decided not to include wall-mounted panels in the regulations; if this situation did come up in an application, it could be handled with a waiver.
Commissioner Longhi asked if the Commission knew enough about wall-mounted panels to effectively write a regulation. Chairman Duren said they did not know enough, and that is why it was decided to handle this on a case-by-case basis. There can always be a zoning change if enough applicants are looking to use wall-mounted panels. Mr. Giner pointed out that no one from the industry that he spoke with considered not having regulations specific to wall-mounted panels a problem.
The Commission agreed to treat wall-mounted panels on a case-by-case basis.
Section 18.104.22.168 – part b: Chairman Duren asked if Approval of the Fire Department should be specifically stated. Mr. Giner said with any commercial property, the Fire Department would have to sign off prior to approval. He said that this section was not really geared toward residential homes, but rather commercial buildings.
The Commission agreed to leave 22.214.171.124 part b as is.
Pages 3 and 4:
Sections 126.96.36.199 – 188.8.131.52: No changes.
Section 8.80.2 – Large Scale Solar Energy System – Sections 184.108.40.206 -220.127.116.11: No changes.
Section 8.80.6 – Utility Notification: Chairman Duren asked about the second to the last line that reads, interconnected customer-owned generator. He asked if generator is correct or if Mr. Giner meant solar energy system. Mr. Giner said that it should be solar energy system, not generator.
18.104.22.168 part a: Chairman Duren asked for verification on the distances in i, ii, and iii just to be sure all the Commissioners were in agreement. They were. Chairman Duren asked about the last line in subpart iii. He asked if “side yard” should be changed to “rear yard”, as it was confusing as written. Mr. Giner said that it should be rear yard and would make the change.
22.214.171.124 part b: No changes.
126.96.36.199 part c: Commissioner Drinan said he still has concerns about height. Chairman Duren said the Commission agreed last time to a height range of 8-12 feet. Commissioner Drinan said that based on what he has learned, a nine-foot maximum height should be more than enough. This way, the industry is not inhibited, but the view line of the residents is protected. Mr. Giner said that he has no problem with nine feet if that is what the Commission wants to do, but he wants to be sure that height requirement will work with the industry. Commissioner Falk said that if the Commission found that nine feet was not working, they could always change it. Commissioner Drinan said he would rather start with a more conservative height maximum than 12 feet. The Commission agreed to make the maximum height requirement nine feet.
Commissioner Alaimo arrived at this point in the meeting. The Commission agreed that since Commissioner Alaimo had missed much of the discussion of the Solar Energy Regulations, for this public hearing Commission Drinan would vote for absent Commissioner Sarno.
188.8.131.52: No changes.
184.108.40.206 – parts a – c: No changes.
220.127.116.11 – part d. Screening: Commissioner Longhi asked about fencing used for screening and pointed out that there is a six-foot height requirement on fencing now. She said eight-foot fencing might be necessary for both screening and security reasons, and that maybe this should be specified in the regulation. Chairman Duren expressed concern with opaque fencing. He said the wind deteriorates it and nothing is usually done to maintain it. He asked for that to be excluded completely. It was agreed by the Commission that the last four lines of this section would read “The Commission may allow additional or alternative screening methods when it is determined that such alternatives are more appropriate for the particular site. The commission may also allow fencing up to eight (8) feet in height where deemed appropriate.” Commissioner Falk pointed out that in line 3, perimeter was misspelled and should be corrected.
Section 18.104.22.168 parts a-b: No changes.
Section 22.214.171.124 parts a-b: No changes.
Section 126.96.36.199 part a, subsections i-ii: No changes.
Section 188.8.131.52 part a, subsection iii: Chairman asked that the words “return to its natural state” be added, and suggested adding an item iv. He said there might be a better way to word it. Mr. Giner suggested adding item iv, to read, “A stabilization/re-vegetation plan shall be submitted along with the Site Plan application.” This way something like “natural state” would not be left open to interpretation.
Section 184.108.40.206 part b: Chairman Duren asked to add at the very end the wording “and charge expenses to the owner.” The Commissioners discussed this, and it was decided that the language would not be necessary and the regulation could stay as written.
8.30.2, part a, subsections i-iv: No changes.
There were no changes proposed to the tables on pages 8-10.
Chairman Duren opened Public Hearing XZA #11-26 to the public and asked if any one in the audience would like to come forward to speak for or against this application. No one came forward to address the Commission.
Chairman Duren closed Public Hearing XZA #11-26.
Commissioner Ladd made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Ballard, to approve PH XZA #11-26 – Proposed Amendment to the Zoning Regulations to provide standards for permitting small-scale and large-scale solar energy systems, Town of Enfield Planning Department, Applicant, version 02-15-12, as amended, effective March 19, 2012.
Commissioner Falk commented that this was a good opportunity for Enfield to get on board with solar energy. He said it would be good for the town. Commissioner Drinan said that the Commission handled this in a very responsible way, citing the site visits taken in February as an example. Chairman Duren thanked the Energy Commission for all of its help and also thanked the PZC members and Mr. Giner for all of their efforts in getting this done.
The motion was carried with a 7-0-0 vote.
PUBLIC HEARINGS – NEW
a. PH #2738 – Special Use Permit for the demolition of a garage, attached brick building, and underground boiler room at 64 Pearl Street in a TVC District, Map 24, Lot 101; St. Patrick’s Church Corporation of Enfield, applicant/owner.
Commissioner Falk took the roll and read the legal notice. Present were: Chairman Charles Duren and Commissioners Lori Longhi, Charles Ladd, Jr., Peter Falk, Elizabeth Ballard, Nicles Lefakis, Alan Drinan, and Dominic Alaimo. Absent were: Commissioners Kathleen Sarno and Ronald Gregory, Sr.
Chairman Alaimo will be sitting in and voting for absent Commissioner Sarno.
Chairman Duren opened Public Hearing #2738 and invited the applicant to come forward to address the Commission.
Denis O’Sullivan, P.E., State of Connecticut, came forward to address the Commission on behalf of St. Patrick’s Church.
Mr. O’Sullivan explained that St. Patrick’s Church is requesting permission to demolish two buildings that were damaged by snowstorms in January and February 2012. He said that one building was a wooden garage where the roof caved in and the other was a brick building, which also had the roof cave in. He further explained that there is an underground boiler room, above which the Parish has a garden, which the applicant also wants to remove.
Mr. O’Sullivan said that the boiler used to provide steam heat for St. Patrick’s Church and surrounding buildings. He said it is no longer used, and has not been used for many years.
Mr. O’Sullivan said that the facilities below grade were found to be contaminated by asbestos. He said the Church had consulting engineers come in and identify the asbestos and then qualified contractors came in and safely removed it. He said that the facilities were now clean and asbestos free.
Mr. O’Sullivan said that what the applicant wants to do is as follows: Demolish the damaged structures; remove all organic material; remove the boiler and all associated steel; bring the grade of the existing foundations down five feet; penetrate the slabs that are below grade to ensure proper drainage; and bring in clean fill including drainable material such as pieces of concrete and brick. He said the project would take about one-month to complete.
Mr. O’Sullivan said that the plan is to leave the site 12 inches below grade because the Parish would like to bring in its own topsoil so that it can replant its garden.
Chairman Duren said that both the Fire Department and the Revitalization Committee were okay with the project. Chairman Duren referenced Mr. Cabibbo’s February 24th email to Mr. Giner saying he wanted to be sure that the demolition work should not go further that the back edge of the public sidewalk and that the conduit under Pearl Street be bulk headed near the property line. Chairman Duren said that these items should be added to Mr. Giner’s conditions of approval.
Mr. O’Sullivan said that these issues were addressed with the Town. The applicant requested that the conduits under the street be abandoned in place. If they have to be removed sometime in the future, St. Patrick’s will pay the expenses for the removal. An agreement was made with the Town. Mr. O’Sullivan will send this agreement to Mr. Giner for the file.
It was agreed that two conditions would be added to Mr. Giner’s February 23rd memo to cover Mr. Cabibbo’s concerns. Condition 9 would read: “The proposed demolition work shall not go further than the back edge of the public sidewalk”. Condition 10 would read: “The conduit shall be bulk headed near the property line.”
Chairman Duren asked the Commissioners if they had any questions for the applicant.
Commissioner Falk asked about the pipes under the ground and if they would be removed. Mr. O’Sullivan referred the Commissioners to the drawings showing where they had bulk headed the pipes that had been used to supply the boiler. Commissioner Falk mentioned other pipes on the drawing and asked if they would be removed. Mr. O’Sullivan said that most of the pipes shown in the drawing have been capped. He said that the rest of them had been previously demolished and the only pipes they found were those shown on the drawings.
Chairman Duren opened Public Hearing #2738 to the public and asked if anyone in the audience would like to come forward to speak for or against this application. No one came forward to address the Commission.
Chairman Duren closed Public Hearing XZA 2738.
Commissioner Falk made a motion, seconded by Commission Ballard to waive the full submission requirements of Section 9.10.2 because the Commission finds that the information is not necessary in order to decide on the application’s conformance with these Regulations.
The motion was carried with a 7-0-0 vote.
Commissioner Falk made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Ballard to approve PH #2738 – Special Use Permit for the demolition of a garage, attached brick building, and underground boiler room at 64 Pearl Street in a TVC District, Map 24, Lot 101; St. Patrick’s Church Corporation of Enfield, applicant/owner, subject to conformance with submitted plans and the following eight conditions as outlined in Mr. Giner’s February 23, 2012 memo to the PZC, as well as two additional conditions, conditions 9 and 10, as discussed above.
Conditions to be met prior to the issuance of permits:
1. This approval will become effective upon the filing of a Special Use Zoning Certificate signed by the Commission Secretary on the Land records by the owner of the property. Proof of such filing shall be in the file prior to the issuance of any permits.
Conditions, which must be, met prior to the Issuance of a Certificate of Compliance:
2. No Certificate of Occupancy or other final approval may be issued until the Zoning Enforcement Officer has signed off on the final work. When minor site work cannot be completed because of weather or other pertinent reason, a conditional approval may be issued for a period not to exceed 180 days, providing satisfactory surety shall be posted with the Town of Enfield in an amount sufficient to complete the site work and with surety acceptable to the Town Attorney and Finance Department.
3. A request for final project review from the Planning Department must be made at least 10 days before a Certificate of Occupancy or other final approval is requested from the Building Official.
4. The area of demolition shall be filled in completely, graded and suitably landscaped.
5. This approval is for the specific use and structure identified in the application. Any change in the nature of the use or the structure will require new approvals from the Enfield Planning and Zoning Commission.
6. This project shall be constructed and maintained in accordance with the referenced plans. Minor modifications to the approved plans may be allowed in accordance with the regulations, subject to staff review and approval.
7. All work associated with the construction of facilities as approved must be completed by March 1, 2017 or this approval shall be rendered null and void, unless an extension is granted by the Commission.
8. By acceptance of this permit and conditions, the applicant and owner acknowledge the right of Town staff to periodically enter upon the subject property for the purpose of determining compliance with the terms of this approval.
9. The proposed demolition work shall not go further than the back edge of the public sidewalk
10. The conduit shall be bulk-headed near the property line
The motion was carried with a 7-0-0 vote.
b. PH #2739 – Petition for a Text Change to the Zoning Regulations to create a new Highway Service Zoning (HSZ) District with corresponding regulations and standards, Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores, Inc., applicant.
Before the start of Public Hearing #2739, Chairman Duren read the following into the record:
The applicants submitted a prior proposal under PH #2714 in March 16, 2011, which was first heard on April 21, 2011. After a series of hearings the Public Hearing was closed on June 2, 2011. The application was later denied on July 21, 2011.
Sec. 8-3. (Establishment and changing of zoning regulations and districts) of the CT General Statutes states, in part, that
“(c) All petitions requesting a change in the regulations or the boundaries of zoning districts shall be submitted in writing and in a form prescribed by the commission and shall be considered at a public hearing within the period of time permitted under section 8-7d. The commission shall act upon the changes requested in such petition. Whenever such commission makes any change in a regulation or boundary it shall state upon its records the reason why such change is made. No such commission shall be required to hear any petition or petitions relating to the same changes, or substantially the same changes, more than once in a period of twelve months.” (Emphasis added)
Consequently, we are first going to ask that the applicant come forward and briefly describe the changes between the previous application and this one. This part of the proceedings is not part of the Public Hearing. Once the Commission hears what the applicant has to say about the changes between the two applications, we will then determine whether or not this application is the same or substantially the same as the one previously heard. If the Commission determines that this is not the same or substantially the same, then we will open the Public Hearing.
If the Commission determines that it is the same or substantially the same, then the Commission will vote on whether we wish to hear this application within the one-year time frame. If the Commission decides not to hear this, then we will not open the Public Hearing. The applicant can then reapply when the one-year time frame from the date the application was last heard has elapsed.
If the Commission votes to go forward, then we will open the Public Hearing on PH # 2739.
Commissioner Longhi expressed concern over letting the applicant come forward and speak but not allowing the public the same opportunity. She said it is not the Commission’s policy to act on things that were provided to the Commission the night of a meeting, as there is no time to review it and make an informed decision. Mr. Giner explained that there would not be a public hearing unless the applicant could establish substantial differences between this application and their previous application. If those differences were proven, the public hearing would be opened, and the public would have its chance to speak.
Commissioner Drinan discussed his interpretation of Section 8-3, item (c). Mr. Giner said that the statute, as written, was clear and had been reviewed by the Town Attorney. It is this statute, as worded, that needs to be followed in deciding whether or not substantial differences exist. Commissioner Drinan expressed concern over the interpretation of item (c) as written, and wanted that noted on the record.
Chairman Duren invited the applicant to come forward at this time to address the Commission.
Attorney Leonard Jacobs, representing Rick Sheffield from Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores, Inc., came forward to address the Commission.
Attorney Jacobs said that indeed the Commission does not have to hear an application for a second time within a year that is not substantially different.
He pointed out that the one-year period was almost up for this application.
Attorney Jacobs said that they submitted their original application in March of 2011. He said that the Commission made at least 20 motions around that time, changing the application itself. He said that since that time, Love’s Travel has in good faith adopted the suggestions in at least 17 of those motions, and as such believes their current application is substantially different from the last one. He went on to say that he could not imagine how the Commission could not find that they were substantially different based on the changes that were made.
Chairman Duren said he has some concerns about the exhibits the applicant gave the Commission tonight, in that the Commission has not even had a chance to look at them and compare them with the exhibits from the previous application. Attorney Jacobs said that the differences were not substantive, but Chairman Duren said he has no way of knowing that until he reviews them himself.
Commissioner Drinan pointed out to Attorney Jacobs that the Commission took the time to make the 20 motions on the original application not necessarily because the Commission was in favor of the project, but because if the project was voted in, the safety, health, and welfare of the town and its residents had to be considered. Commissioner Longhi agreed.
Commissioner Longhi said that the public puts its confidence in the PZC and as such the Commission needs to do what is right by the public. She said in her opinion the applications were not that different, and the applicant should have to wait the 12 months as required.
Commissioner Alaimo asked about the first application and the 20 motions that were being discussed. Chairman Duren explained that the motions were intended to be conditions that had to be met if the project went forward. He suggested that Commissioner Alaimo excuse himself from voting tonight as he was not on the Commission when the original application was heard. Commissioner Alaimo agreed to excuse himself from voting on this application, and as such Commissioner Drinan will be voting on this matter.
Commissioner Longhi made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Ballard, that PH #2739 - Petition for a Text Change to the Zoning Regulations to create a new Highway Service Zoning (HSZ) District with corresponding regulations and standards, Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores, Inc., applicant, puts forth the same or substantially the same changes to the regulations that were put forth under application #2714, last heard on June 2, 2011.
The motion was carried with a 6-0-1 vote. Commissioner Ladd abstained.
Commissioner Drinan made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Ballard, that the Commission waive its rights under Section 8-3 (c) of the C.G.S. and allow PH #2739 - Petition for a Text Change to the Zoning Regulations to create a new Highway Service Zoning (HSZ) District with corresponding regulations and standards, Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores, Inc., applicant, to be heard within twelve months from the date of the close of PH #2714.
The motion was denied with a 0-7-0 vote – This proposal cannot be heard until after the 12-month waiting period is over, that is, after June 2, 2012.
a. Discussion of Farm Animal Regulations
Commissioner Longhi said that the Farm Animal Regulations would be given to the Commission for review before the next meeting.
b. Discussion of Alternative Energy Regulations
Mr. Giner said he would get a copy Ellington’s regulations for wind energy so that the Commission can take a look at them.
c. Discussion of Tag Sale Regulations
The intent here is to not allow tag sales in the same location to occur over and over again. Mr. Giner will draft some regulations for the Commission to review.
d. Discussion of Gift Baskets with wine bottles
Mr. Giner has not had a chance to draft regulations for this yet.
e. Discussion of Coverage Regulations
Mr. Giner will draft a formal amendment that he will show to ZBA and PZC and then submit to CRCOG.
APPLICATIONS TO BE RECEIVED
The Commissioners discussed receiving information the night of public hearings/site plan reviews. Mr. Giner explained that while the information has to be accepted, it does not have to be acted upon until the Commission has had a chance to review it.
Site Plan Reviews
SPR 1546 – Application for a 4,700 s.f. addition to the existing industrial building at 198 Freshwater Boulevard, Zoned IP, Map 55, Lot 003, John Morgan, AIA, applicant; MTA Properties, LLC, owner.
Scheduled for April 5, 2012
SPR 1547 – Application for a new 5,750 s.f. automotive parts retail store with associated site improvements to replace an existing commercial structure to be located at 699 Enfield Street, in a Business Local District within the Enfield Street Design Overlay District, Map 29, Lot 35; Gary Dayharsh, applicant; IJAN 2 CT Realty, LLC, owner.
Scheduled for April 5, 2012
FLD #034 – Request for a Development Permit within a Special Flood Hazard Area for a proposed residential addition with attached deck at 34 Wheeler Drive, Map 80, Lot 159, Thomas J. Kidder, applicant/owner.
Scheduled for April 5, 2012
NEXT REGULAR MEETING
There is no PZC meeting on March 15th, as this is the Annual CTFPZA Meeting in Southington. The Council of Chairs meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, March 21st. The Commissioners agreed that there was no need to hold a special PZC meeting on Wednesday, March 21st. The next regular meeting of the PZC will be April 5, 2012.
Commissioner Longhi made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Ballard, to adjourn. Following a unanimous vote, the Commission adjourned at 9:15 p.m.
Peter Falk, Secretary
Enfield Planning and Zoning Commission