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Lamoine Planning Board

Minutes of July 2, 2013

Planning Board Members Present: Holt, Bamman, Gallagher, Donaldson, Tadema-Wielandt, Weber (alt), Fowler (alt)

Code Enforcement OfficerPresent: M. Jordan

Members of the Public A. LaBossiere

Members of the Press (none)

  1. Chair Holt called the meeting to order at 7:01 p.m. and called for nominations for officers for 2013-14.
  1. Consideration of Minutes
  1. Code Enforcement Officer's Report
    1. Permits Issued - Report accepted
    2. Enforcement Actions – After a brief discussion regarding the “illegal junkyard at 490 Douglas Highway”, the report was accepted.
  2. Conservation Commission

Ann LaBossiere reported that the new Chairperson of the Commission is Larry Libby and that the Commission has engaged two UMaine professors to assist in examining how Lamoine's location on the shore shapes its economy. The purpose of this latter initiative is to provide the town with information about the opportunities and responsibilities it faces that affect our economic prosperity now and into the future. The Commission is also developing an archive of its documents to put on the town website to inform the public of footpaths and other resources. 

  1. Old Business
    1. Doug Gott & Sons Site Plan Review and Gravel Extraction permit applications (Map 3 Lot 8) - S. Salsbury indicated to Holt by email that Mr. Gott is out of state and has yet to contract for the required drilling. The Board assented to Holt's recommendation that the Board continue to table the matter for another month. The Board will request that the applicant be present at the August meeting to provide information necessary for the Board to determine if it should continue to table this matter.
    2. Harold MacQuinn, Inc. Site Plan Review and Gravel Extraction permit applications (Map 3 Lots 31 & 33) - S. Salsbury indicated by email that the applicant is in the process of seeking bids for drilling the test wells. The Board will continue to await the arrival of the additional information requested on May 21, 2013.
  2. New Business - None
  3. Other Public Matters - None
  4. Ordinance Matters
    1. Development of administrative materials for the new Lamoine Gravel Ordinance - The Board will ask S. Marckoon to develop forms to use in the Completeness Review process and in the Performance Standards Review process. Holt has developed an application form consistent with the new ordinance.
    2. Ordinance Development - The Board engaged in discussion on the merits of presenting to the Select Board revisions to the current Lamoine Gravel Ordinance, pursuant to the Board meeting discussion June 19 (see minutes). The Board identified three possible aspects to revise (numbered below).

    i. Procedures for the Escrow Account. - Holt has asked Stu to submit his recommendations to the Board. Fowler reported on various ways the Town could verify the volume of materials extracted each year (which is the basis for determining the funds to be deposited in escrow for restoration). Discussion of this matter revealed how difficult it is to get a definitive measurement of material either disturbed, removed, and/or hauled into the pit area over the course of a year. The Board agreed that it will be important to document at each annual inspection of each pit that location and general dimensions of active extraction and to compare these observations from year to year. The Board discussed the possibility that the CEO could make linear measurements from fixed data points to provide some information in this regard. No decision was reached.

    ii. Setbacks and Buffers - Holt presented draft language that would add a sub-section #6 to Section 8A (see draft) that would give the Planning Board authority to reduce the buffer area to not less than 50 feet in cases where it judged that this reduction of the setback would not encroach on a residence or commercial building and not violate sub-sections 2, 3, or 4.

    Jordan suggested simply grandfathering all pits in existence on March 13, 2013, permitting them to dig to the old setback of 50 feet.

    Fowler supported this idea, pointing out that all these pits had passed through Site Plan Review to extract within defined (mapped) areas. He suggested that any Gravel Extraction permits issued for new areas (beyond those mapped and permitted as of 3/13/13) would need to abide by the current ordinance setback and buffer requirements.

    Donaldson presented draft language that would link extraction to the 50 foot setback for permitted pits as of 3/13/13 to immediate restoration requirements and depth-of-extraction limits (see draft language).

    Discussion of these ideas generated the following observations:

    1. linking restoration to a permit to extract within the buffer zone within a fixed time period (the permit cycle) will “force plans to be thought out well” by the applicant. A revision could state that any planned extraction not completed within the time period could no longer be permitted;
    2. the ordinance should require that the extraction AND the restoration steps be completed within the fixed time period;
    3. could stipulate that, if the restoration plan has not been executed by the time-limit, no further permitting of the pit would be granted;
    4. the benefit of Donaldson's proposal is that the town will get immediate restoration within the 100 foot buffer zone;
    5. relating to proposed #6, the ordinance could require that the abutting property owner must agree with allowing extraction to the 50 foot setback (giving abutters a “veto” authority);
    6. Holt's concept and Donaldson's concept are not incompatible with one another; both could be accepted in some form;

    Donaldson asked if the Board agreed that any revisions we recommend should apply only to permit holders as of March 13, 2013 and only to the areas permitted on the SPR and Gravel maps then in existence. Holt expressed some doubts about this position. Tadema-Wielandt and Gallagher wondered why we should not stand by a 100 foot setback for everyone. At the end of this discussion, it appeared that everyone present agreed with the grandfathering principle articulated by Donaldson. The Board's thinking appeared to be:

    The current 100 foot setback stands. An applicant can seek an exception to it to dig to 50 feet if:

    • The applicant has an SPR permit as of 3/13/13
    • No residence or commercial building lies within 100' of the 50' setback
    • The abutter gives permission
    • Extraction activities are linked to restoration activities within a fixed time period (see Donaldson draft).
  1. Next Meetings:

10. Adjourned at 8:59 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted,

Gordon Donaldson, Secretary