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Lamoine Planning Board

Minutes - January 6, 2015

Planning Board Members Present: Holt, Bamman, Donaldson, Tadema-Wielandt, Fowler, Legere (alternate), McMullen (alternate)

Code Enforcement Officer Present: M. Jordan

Members of the Public M. Deyling (Summit Environmental Consultants), C. Tippitt (S. W. Cole Engineering, Inc.), S. Salsbury

Members of the Press  - none        

1. Chair Holt called the meeting to order at 7:04 p.m.

 2. Consideration of Minutes

Several typographical errors were corrected in the draft minutes for December 2, 2014.  Tadema-Wielandt (Fowler) moved to approve the minutes as corrected.  Approved: 5-0.

3. Code Enforcement Officer’s Report

            a. Permits Issued  report accepted

            b. Enforcement Actions

A question was raised concerning the reasons for extending the deadline for removing the scrap yard (Map 1 Lot 81-10).  CEO Jordan reported that the owner has a contract with a hauler to remove it but that the cold weather and snow have interfered with the process.  The owner now has until June 2015.

4. Conservation Commission – no report

5.  Old Business

a. Monitoring Well Installation Report: John W. Goodwin, Jr. , Inc. gravel permit Map 1 Lot 75 (E. Lamoine Pit; 47 acres)

Holt provided a summary of the current status of the December 3, 2013 gravel extraction permit.  (See October 7, 2014 minutes: Goodwin, Inc proposal to address one remaining condition placed on the permit to operate this pit.  See “letter of application to consider amendments” submitted by S. Salsbury August 18, 2014, page 1, Condition #2.)  The Planning Board is to review well installation and water testing data to determine if the terms of the condition have been met and will report its conclusions to the Select Board for their consideration relative to the “consent agreement” between the town and the operator.

Cliff Tippitt from S.W. Cole, Inc. reported that his company has installed three new monitoring wells and presented a written report of the water quality data from five monitoring wells and the groundwater level data from a total of eight monitoring wells.  Based on these data, his company concluded:

i. that there are no hydraulic divides under this parcel, as previously thought; the groundwater flow is from east to west (so west is “downgradient”);

ii. all downgradient wells revealed “clean” measurements of water quality (see tables); the “cleanest well on the site” was GW-3, located downgradient;

iii. there is likely a perched water table at the north end of the parcel where well JJW-1 is located and that Blunt’s Pond is also located over a perched table;

iv. this well (JJW-1) showed discernible traces of EPH (the measure of diesel and other fuels), but at a level well below a “risk” level.  S.W. Cole recommends abandoning this well for monitoring purposes in the future because it is perched and, instead, drilling wells closer to the excavation area as the head moves north in order to get more accurate readings ahead of the excavation.

In response to questions from the Board, Tippitt indicated that all new wells had “lockable caps” and that only B-2 has no cap.

The Board thanked Mr. Tippitt for a clear and complete report and determined that the information required for the fulfillment of the condition on this permit was present in adequate detail (see 10/14 minutes).

Fowler (Donaldson) moved that the Planning Board find that the applicant has met Condition #2 of the permit issued December 3, 2013 and that extraction operations now are in full compliance with the Lamoine Gravel Ordinance.  Vote: Approved 5-0.

b. Monitoring Well Installation Report: Harold MacQuinn, Inc. gravel permits, Map 9 Lot 13 (Sand Pit) and Map 20 Lot 12 (Higgins Pit)

Holt provided a summary of the current status of the December 3, 2013 gravel extraction permits. [See October 7, 2014 minutes: MacQuinn, Inc. proposal to address two remaining conditions placed on the permits to operate these pits.  See “letter of application to consider amendments” submitted by S. Salsbury August 18, 2014, page 7, Condition #1 and Page 6, Condition #2.]  The Planning Board is to review well installation and water testing data to determine if the terms of the condition have been met and will report its conclusions to the Select Board for their consideration relative to the “consent agreement” between the town and the operator.

M. Deyling of Summit Environmental Consultants, Inc. reported that:

i. there are now four monitoring wells (3 suitable for quality testing and 4 suitable for water level monitoring) as follows:

         an 80’ well has been drilled south of the MacQuinn Rd., as was discussed in October (OW-3);

         a second 80’ well has been drilled at the north end of the Higgins Pit, as discussed in October (OW-4);

         existing OW-1 and OW-2 (this one is not suitable for water quality testing);

ii. groundwater flow under the site is generally north to south

iii. quality results reveal no EPH or VPH or “other issues” (see Table 1)

Legere asked why the report included results of “MW-1”.  This was, apparently, a mistake.  These should read “OW-1” and “will be corrected”.

Fowler (Tadema-Wielandt) moved that the Planning Board find that the applicant has met Condition #1 of the Sand Pit permit issued December 3, 2013 and Condition #2 of the Higgins Pit permit issued December 3, 2013 and that extraction operations now are in full compliance with the Lamoine Gravel Ordinance.  The motion further stipulated that the Board understands that the “MW-1” error will be corrected in the submitted materials. Vote: Approved 5-0.

c. Monitoring Well Installation Report: Harold MacQuinn, Inc. gravel permit Map 3 Lots 31 & 33 (Kittredge Pit)

Holt provided a summary of the current status of the December 3, 2013 gravel extraction permits. [See October 7, 2014 minutes: MacQuinn, Inc. proposal to address one remaining condition placed on the permit to operate this pit. See “letter of application to consider amendments” submitted by S. Salsbury August 18, 2014, cover page.)  The Planning Board is to review well installation and water testing data to determine if the terms of the condition have been met and will report its conclusions to the Select Board for their consideration relative to the “consent agreement” between the town and the operator.

M. Deyling of Summit Environmental Consultants, Inc. reported that:

i. one new 100’ well (MW-4) has been installed at the western boundary of the pit;

ii. in addition to this well (MW-4), his firm attempted to collect water quality data from OW-1 and OW-2, but they were unable to find water in OW-1. (See Table 1.)

iii. groundwater level data was obtained from seven wells (see data on map). 

Discussion ensued about the suitability of OW-1 for quality monitoring and there was general agreement that the site is excellent for this purpose.  Deyling remarked that “it’s a good location…downgradient… There should be a sample from OW-1.”  Without it, there is only one source of water quality data in the western end of this large area.  Salsbury suggested two options: to drill the well deeper or wait until there is water in it in the spring.  Deyling commented that drilling deeper would satisfy both quality and level monitoring, stating “the well needs to be deep enough, not silt in, and be secure.”

Holt summarized by stating that the information received from MacQuinn, Inc. “does not meet the condition” placed on this permit in December, 2013.  The Planning Board will continue to await information that satisfies the ordinance; in particular, the operator must provide valid groundwater level data from at least seven wells and valid water quality data from at least three wells, including a new OW-1. 

6.  New Business

Letter from Stu Marckoon on behalf of the Select Board inviting the Planning Board to discuss revisions to the Gravel Ordinance.

The Board discussed the purpose of such a meeting and the potential benefits of a conversation about the revisions drafted by each board.  Holt reported         that the purpose, according to Stu, is to “get the process going to get a proposal to the Town so the Town can act.”  Fowler noted that “the whole  process is confusing” and advised “keeping the two [sets of revisions] separate” until each board has completed its own.  Donaldson suggested that it would be beneficial simply to have each board explain what it has done and why.  Holt, Donaldson, and Bamman indicated that they would attend the Select Board meeting January 9 to explore these possibilities.

7. Other Public Matters – none

8.  Ordinance Matters

a. Gravel Ordinance revisions: Holt presented a version of the December draft without the confusion of the old language and notes.

b. Annual Compliance Inspection form for the Gravel Ordinance.  Holt presented a draft for future discussion.

c. Status of recreational vehicles as dwellings (BLUO and Shoreland ordinance language).  The Board discussed ideas regarding the recent case of an RV that appeared to be serving as a dwelling unit.  Members expressed some confusion over what “the problem” is: a matter of health?  Of aesthetics? Of residential density?

Bamman reported that he had examined ordinances from Castine, Bucksport, Searsport and other towns.  These tend to define any object “that has wheels and is registered with the DMV” as “not a dwelling unit”.  These towns, he said, tend “not to regulate” the use of such non-dwelling-units.

Jordan suggested, as he has in the past, that it would be preferable to revise the ordinance to read the way the Town has regulated such vehicles in the past.  That is, when a vehicle has been in place and inhabited for 30 consecutive days, it requires a permit.  He also pointed out that the state plumbing code defines a dwelling unit as having “running hot and cold water and septic”. 

Several members wondered if the Shoreland requirement (permitting such vehicles on properties for up to 120 days in a calendar year) should apply everywhere in town.

The discussion ended without conclusions.

9. Next Meetings:

February 3, 2015

March 3, 2015

10.  Adjourned at 9:28 p.m. (temperature reading -7 F.)

Respectfully Submitted,

Gordon Donaldson, Secretary