Planning Commission Meeting Minutes 5.18.23



Minutes of Meeting – Thursday May 18, 2023

Members Present: Garret Siegel, Elliott Nachwalter, Sebastian Massey, and Michael Murno

Other Attendees: Joan Nash (Land Use Administrator)

Attendance Formats: Town Hall, Zoom Video Conferencing or Phone

The meeting was called to order at 7:08 pm by Chairman Garret Siegel.

Approval of the meeting minutes of our special meeting of May 11, 2023, and the previous meeting (April 27) was postponed until the next meeting.

Public Comments Unrelated to the Agenda

There were no public comments.

New Business

There was no New Business

Old Business

We continued with revisions to the Bylaw, and Chairman Siegel suggested that we focus on Article 6, Definitions for this meeting. Looking specifically at the second sentence in Section 6.1 Terms and Usage, Garret questioned the term “”Rules of Construction, intent and usage” as it seemed to imply hardcore rules for constructing structural elements, such as in building construction. We all agreed the use of the phrase was inappropriate in context and should be revised. Sebastian Massey suggested striking the word “construction and using the phrase “guidelines of intent, and usage”. We all agreed with the change. In Section 6.1.2 Garret questioned the meaning of the phrase “natural construction”, the term seemed inappropriate. Sebastian Massey suggested that the phrase be stricken and replaced with “context”. In Section 6.1.11, the term “commonly accepted” seemed vague to some, but was kept on the basis that the governing jurisdiction has the final decision as to the intended meaning of the definitions in this section. The right of appeal is always available to the applicant.

We moved to Section 6.2 Definitions. With regard to Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU), the requirement in the last sentence “provided that the property is owner occupied” was questioned by Garret Siegel as to why this is necessary. There was some discussion and the commission noted that since the text was new (shown in red type), and there may have been some reason BCRC added the provision, it was agreed to inquire with BCRC if this is, in fact, necessary. Next we moved to Bed and Breakfast. Garret questioned whether there is the need for the lastsentence “Employees shall not exceed three full-time equivalents in addition to the owner”. We all felt that it was restrictive and not necessary and agreed to strike it from the text. With regard to the definition of the term “Business”, Garret thought it was confusing. After reading it more closely, we agreed with Sebastian’s suggestion to change the word “occupant” to “usage” and to place parentheses around the phrases “such as a charity” and “such as a credit union”.  For the definition for Farm Stand, it was agreed the phrase “seasonally used” be hyphenated to read “seasonally-used”, as this clarified the definition. With regard to the definition for “Hotel”, Garret questioned the restriction noted in the last sentence: “kitchen facilities may be included in rooms, but occupancy for more than two consecutive months shall not be permitted”. As this is new text (shown in red), it was agreed to pose the question to BCRC. For the definition for “Inn”, Garret questioned why inns are restricted to no more than 25 rooms. Again, it was decided to pose the question to BCRC. For “Junkyard”, there was a question about the use of the word “deposit” in the first sentence. It currently reads “Any place or facility of outdoor storage or deposit for storing, keeping, processing, or selling junk or as a scrap metal processing facility”. Sebastian suggested rewording it to read “Any place or facility of outdoor storage or deposit used for storing, keeping, processing, or selling junk or used as a scrap metal processing facility”. We agreed to get clarification from BCRC regarding the use/meaning of the word “deposit” in this context. For On-Farm Business, the definition includes the term “qualifying products”. Garret raised the question of what are “qualifying products?” We all agreed that a definition for qualifying products is necessary and the question will be posed to BCRC. For the definition for Open Space, there was some discussion whether commas were needed between the words “homeowner” and “community”. After some discussion, it was agreed the intent of the definition was to state “homeowner community” as a single entity. The text as suggested by BCRC was unchanged. For “Retail”, it was agreed to include after the phrase “where the principle use or purpose of which is the sale”, the word “or rental” as rental equipment is offered at retail facilities.

There was some discussion regarding Tiny Homes and Manufactured Homes and the differences between, but the topic was reserved for our next meeting. It was also noted that we should give some thought regarding Tiny Homes and whether minimum sizes and or limitations need to be considered when defining them. Currently there is no definition for a Tiny Home.

It was also noted that a “to date revised edition to the Bylaw” will be assembled by Nick Zaiac and distributed to APC members at our next meeting.

As we were approaching our meeting time limitation of 9:00 pm, we agreed to resume discussions on Section 6.1 Definitions with Storage Units at our next meeting. Michael Murno made a motion to adjourn; seconded by Elliott Nachwalter. Motion carried. Meeting adjourned at 9:00 pm.

The next APC Meeting will be held on June 8, 2023 at 7:00 pm.

Respectfully Submitted By Michael Murno

Land Use Administrator’s Report for APC meeting of  5/18/2023

Date range: 5/17/2023 – 5/17/2023

Permits issued:

3372    PAUL SECOY                            0 Salter Hill Rd Ext                   R          18-2-07            New residence

3373    ROBERT & PAM BARBER         1398 Old West Road               R          9-2-10              Garage, decks, permit renewal.

3374    KELLY KENNEDY                      3470 Route 7A                        CR        17-1-20            Accessory Building removal, new accessory building to be

constructed in a different place.

Pending Permits:

MICHAEL CRAWFORD                         279 Laver Rd                           R          06-2-03            Needs site plan for addition on mobile home showing lot

dimensions, setbacks, septic, water, etc.. The sketch submitted is insufficient.  Emailed and spoke on phone.  Appears that there are a lot of mobile home/ shed on the lot, and one clearly not in compliance with setbacks


                                                                                                                                                5/17/23 No further word on this.

Permits Pending APC: None

Permits Pending ZBA:

3366    DOUG MCCAULEY                   1311 East Arlington Rd           CI         19-02-01          Garage addition ZBA scheduled 5/23/23

Violation letters:

3358    KIMBERLY BARNES                  3383 VT Route 313 West        R          03-3-02            4/3/23 Select Board letter upheld LUA violation

5/11/23 Sent letter recognizing that the commercial appears to have ceased, equipment selling/sold. We can cease fines if Barnes signs the memo of understanding.

3354    KIRSTEN HALGREN                  5827 VT Route 313 West        R          01-1-10            Informal violation letter to remove cross in

Floodway per the E Court verdict.  Halgren appealed to VT Supreme court re: both the base of operations conditions and the river determination re the cross.  Violation in LUA office paused for these appeals. 

The Vermont Supreme Court rejected the Battenkill River Determination Appeal as Halgren filed is a day too late.

The Vermont Superior Court Environmental Division has acknowledged the appeal on the base of operations conditions that were approved by the ZBA.

3311    SHERRY SALLISKY                    1027 VT Route 313W              R          12-3-01            5/4/23 Sent letter on violation to Sallisky

5/16/23 Steve Sallisky (father) visited my office to review the situation, and was convinced that the permitted locations for the RV was incorrect.  Insisted that I walk the property with him to review why he feels this way.

5/17/23 Walked the property and reviewed the situation with Steve Sallisky.  Clearly he had not measured out correctly in several ways, including the current location of the porta-potty, that I brought to his attention.  I emphasized that he / Sherry Sallisky needs to work with ANR to get the location for the concrete pad exactly right  and at the right elevation. I emailed him copies of the APC and ZBA minutes as well as excerpts of bylaws quoted in the latter. 

TSCHORN, DOUGLAS & NANCY          3351 VT Route 313 West        R          03-3-03            Operating Kayak business w/o permit

Tenant: Josh Enzensperger                 3353 VT Route 313 West        R          03-3-03            1/17/23 Letter to confirm no longer doing business

5/17/23 I’ve been keeping an eye on this situation.  Enzensperger never contacted me to confirm no longer doing business, so I’ve been watching.  There were a lot of Canoes / Kayaks on the property in April (maybe to sell them?), but since then fewer, and no movement.  Will continue to monitor.         

3337    ED & BRENDA PIKE/                1803 Maple Hill                       R          13-2-15            Continuing to follow-up on the sawmill situation in wetlands area. Since last year waiting for a wetland delineation to be completed.  Gervais now

            JOE GERVAIS                                                                                                               has a contract with Otter Creek Engineering, who will be working on this through July 2023.

Certificate of Completion issued:

3280    CHRISTINE JENNE                    3117 VT Route 7A                   VR        22-1-13            Mudroom

3261    DAVID ELWELL            186 Windy Knoll                      R          13-2-34            Pool and pool house/office

3285    CLAY BARTLET                         1049 Maple Hill Rd                 R          13-1-24            Modular Home (also discovered 3 car garage and porch

unpermitted.  Permits for these are in process now)

3297    MELANIE SIMCOX                   164 Hollerith Rd                      R          12-2-08            2 Tiny Homes

3295    JOHN KANTOR                        933 River Road                        R          12-2-05            Deck

3301    JOHN KANTOR                        933 River Road                        R          12-2-05            Balcony

3290    KATE JONES                             1678 Old West Rd                   R          09-2-01            Greenhouse

3314    SCOTT GOEZ                           29 Sugar Shack Lane               CRR     06-3-13            Additions to Ramuntos commercial kitchens

Zoning Compliance Letters Issued: none


TOM PELHAM                                     0 VT Route 313W                    R          03-3-12            Considering subdivision or PUD

CHARLENE LAMBERT                          171 Doberman Lane               R          13-2-34            Considering kennels base of operations

ANDREW BRAINERD                           128 Munn Terrace                  VR        16-2-12            Considering a customary home business bread bakery

DEBBIE GARDNER                               102 Glebe Lot Road                R          05-2-16            Discussion of use of logging trail on property with no ROW in deed

JOYCE LONERGAN                               194 Cemetery Rd                    R          14-1-03            Home building / mobile/ tiny options

RABLOGAN CASTLE                             5187 VT Route 7A                   CRR     06-3-23            Discussed enclosing existing porch.

KATELYN PEMBROKE                          559 Berwal Road                     R          02-2-14            Applying for a rear deck.

GREG KAPOSKY                                                                                                                       Looking to build apartments. Discussed options.