TOWN OF WEATHERSFIELD, VERMONT
MINUTES OF PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING
Monday, August 27, 2018
- Call to Order - Chair, Nancy Heatley called the meeting to order at 7:03pm.
Introductions: Sven Fedorow (Land Use Administrator), Nancy Heatley, Paul Tillman, Michael Todd, Julia Lloyd Wright (Energy Coordinator, ex-officio)
Visitor: Ed Morris, Town Manager
- Agenda Review - 27 August, 2018, no additions/changes
III. Approval of Meeting Minutes - 13 August, 2018
A motion was made by Paul Tillman to accept the Minutes of 13 August, 2018, seconded by Michael Todd. Voted: Unanimously .
- Review of Land Use Administrator Tasks/Role
- Possible Executive Session as per 1 V.S.A. s/s 313 (3) (Land Use Administrator Evaluation)
Open discussion focused on the work Sven Fedorow has accomplished for the Planning Commission since he joined the Town Office staff and his handling of the updated and rewritten current bylaws. All comments were positive and the Planning Commission appreciated the progress to date. Ed Morris said that funding is available to hire a full time person and the Town has been looking at other tasks that will lead to a full-time job for the Land Use Administrator.
Michael Todd said that based on performance and work ethic he would very strongly recommend Sven Fedorow for such a position.
A motion was made by Paul Tillman to switch the Land Use Administrator job to a full-time position based on reviews and the Town Manager recommendation, seconded by Michael Todd. Voted: Unanimously.
There was no Executive Session.
- Zoning Bylaw Sections
- Maximum Building Height
- Exceptions for certain structures
The Commission agreed to review the existing definition for a building or structure height. Various descriptions from several towns were discussed, including exceptions to height limits and the maximum percentage of the height limit. Sven Fedorow will rewrite the bylaw for discussion at the next meeting.
- Formatting of bylaws
- Examples from other municipalities
Several examples of formatting were discussed from various Vermont towns to simplify requests for permits. Tables reviewed were designed for Permitted Uses, Conditional Uses and specify dimensional requirements for lot size, width, setback, height, envelope and coverage, etc. Sven Fedorow will write up a remodel patterned from examples for the next meeting.
- “One principal use”
- Potential amendment to rule
Varying descriptions and examples taken from other towns were discussed and the definition of principal use with accessory uses. Restrictions were also discussed with multiple use. Sven Fedorow said he would like to avoid the fee for conditional use. He will further research other sources considered and write up a draft to discuss at the next meeting.
- Top of Bank/Top of Slope recap
- Current definition & use of diagrams
Sven Fedorow met with John Broker-Campbell (DEC Watershed Management Division, Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, Rutland). For Top of the Bank measurement John Broker- Campbell said his agency could produce a temporary overlay of the district from the Connecticut River. This area should be specific to the river corridor. Sven Federow will get State guidance and river corridor advisory to designate a river corridor and add the State language with the wording.
The State process could provide more funding in an emergency.
Paul Tillman asked if there is any material to share and voiced his concern on riverbank use for Vermont home owners with property abutting the river.
- Development without permit
- Fee/fine approach
The Planning Commission will review penalties to be levied for violations involved with ‘after the fact applications’.
- Proposal to expedite adoption process of certain bylaws
This will appear on the next agenda
The next meeting will take place on Monday, September 10, 2018
Zoning Bylaw Sections: Maximum Building Height; Formatting of Bylaws; “One principal use”; Development without permit; Proposals to expedite adoption process of certain bylaws. (How many bylaws can the selectboard receive for discussion at their public meetings; 1-2 or 3-4.) Sven Fedorow will prepare a list of bylaws and priority for selectboard review.
A motion to adjourn at 9:23pm was made by Paul Tillman, seconded by Michael Todd. Voted: Unanimously.