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Board of Appeals Minutes 06/01/10
Town of Buxton  
Board of Appeals
June 1, 2010 Minutes

Board members in attendance:  Stephen Heroux, Charlene Libby, Jack Hanna and Penny Booker
        
Others in attendance: Linda Hunt, Don Estes  and Fed Farnham

Stephen Heroux called the meeting to order and welcomed new member Penny Booker, who replaced the vacancy from Dennis Sweatt.

"       Charlene motioned to opened the meeting at 7:06pm, the motion was seconded by Jack and passed with a 4 - 0 vote.
Public Hearing:  Linda Fuller is requesting a variance to allow an 18' x 72' addition to the back of an existing hay barn located in the Shoreland Zone at 29 Spruce Swamp Road.  Tax Map 8, Lots 12.
Linda Fuller is requesting to build an 18' x 78' extension to the backside of an existing barn to store hay and trailers.   Code Officer Fred Farnham informed Ms. Fuller the addition could only issue a permit for 14 feet wide in order to meet the 75' setback from the river.  Ms. Fuller said the hay trailer will not fit in a 14 foot and is requesting a four-foot variance from the river.  Most of the barn is within the setback, there is one section approximately 3 ? feet by 4 feet that does not meet the requirement due to the arch or the river.

Questions from the Board:
Penny Booker asked if the impact location of 3 ? feet is in the middle of the proposed addition.  Ms. Fuller indicated on the photo the location of the encroachment was in the middle due to the bend in the river.
Charlene asked if the DEP information submitted with the packet was for this project.  Ms. Fuller said it was from a previous project, which was fill for the road and the access ramp.  She also points out that the drawing from the FEMA map indicates the location of the wetland area in relation to the barn.  Ms. Fuller said the barn is located 10 to 12 feet above the river.
Code Enforcement Officer Fred Farnham clarifies that there is a 75' setback from the river for any structure.  The proposed addition does not meet the setback from Little River due to the bend in the river.  The existing 42' x 80' steel metal barn built in 1989, which is parallel with Spruce Swamp Road.  A permit-by-rule from DEP was permitted to Ms. Fuller for the access road that goes around behind the barn.  Fred needed to plot the relation from the river to the proposed addition.  He first measured from the river to both corners of the proposed addition.  They were both within the 75' setback, but because of the bend in the river, the middle of the addition encroached into the setback by 3 1/2 feet.   Fred was unable to issue a permit for the 18 feet and recommended narrowing the proposed addition to 14 feet wide.  Stephen asked how DEP allowed building the road and having fill brought in.  Fred said it was through a Permit-by-rule with DEP and he did not have any of the findings.  
Charlene asked if the floor was cement, Ms. Fuller said it would be.  Charlene asked Fred to explain the FEMA.  Fred explained the map indicated the flood level area, how high the river would rise in the event of a 100-year flood.  
Jack said the last rainstorm did not damage the driveway that goes behind the barn, but a section of Spruce Swamp Road was washed out.   Fred agreed.
In a discussion with the Board members, Charlene asked what authority the Board has with the Shoreland Zone.  The Board discussed meeting the four hardships.

Public comments:  
Don Estes an abutter to the Fullers, has no problem and they are very good neighbors.  
Dennis Santolucito asked what the Board has to look for in a hardship process.  Stephen explained the process and read the four hardship questions.  Dennis said it seems like it would be fine since DEP allowed the road.  
"       Stephen Motion to close this portion of the public hearing seconded by Charlene a unanimous vote.

Discussion: All four hardships would have to be met.  Charlene recalls something about a 30% expansion within the shoreland.  Fred confirmed that there is a 30% expansion provision but the expansion cannot go closer to the water.  Penny suggested changing the location of the addition - to offset in another direction.  Jack does not have any comments
"       Stephen motioned to re-open the public hearing, seconded by Charlene the motion passed with a 4 - 0 vote.

Stephen asked Fred if this boundary goes to the further edge of the roof.    Fred said it could if DEP considers it the structure.  Fred read the DEP definition of a structure.  

Ms. Fuller said that adding on to the back does not change the appearance or the character of the barn and adds they are not getting the young helpers to work, as they use too.  They need some place to store the long, tall loaded hay wagons.  It is the least impact on an agricultural barn that sits on a knoll.  Penny confirms width and height of the request.
Jack said he understands what she is trying to do -protecting the trailers loaded hay from the weather.  And adds there are no chemicals or anything harmful to the land being an all natural product it will not harm the environment.  Penny asked how many trailers could fit; Ms. Fuller confirms that three loaded trailers will fit into this proposed space and nine to twelve in the existing barn.
"       Stephen moved to close the public hearing, seconded by Charlene.  The motion passed with a 4 - 0 vote.

Hardships:
1.The land in question cannot yield a reasonable return under the requirements of this ordinance -   Ms. Fuller stated they need more trailer space that is completely enclosed to protect the hay crop and equipment during unloading and often times without labor help.  The hay needs to be protected from wind driven rain and sun, as both will deteriorate and ruin the quality of the hay.  Motion made by Stephen that Ms. Fuller meets the first criteria of hardship, the vote passed with 3 in favor, 1 against.

2.The need for a variance is due to the unique circumstances of the property and not the general condition in the neighborhood - Ms. Fuller stated the barn is in a wooded location that was cleared for the existing barn 25-years ago.  It would not take away from productive hayfields nor impact the environment as its already a driveway used for outdoor storage.  Stephen added that the river is unique to this local.  Stephen took a show of hands as to who thinks the application meets criteria for the second case of hardship, the motion passed with a 4 - 0 vote.

3.The granting of a variance will not alter the essential character of the locality.  Ms. Fuller states there will be no change of appearance to barn from the road view.  Jack said it was a secluded area and you will not even notice if an addition was added.  Stephen asked for a show of hands if you feel she meets the criteria for the third hardship.  The vote passed with a 4 - 0 vote.
4.These conditions are not the result of action taken by the applicant for a variance or a prior owner.  Ms. Fuller stated, no.  
                     
       Charlene said that Fred's letter summarized that the river has met some erosion within the past 25 years, so with that she does feel Ms. Fuller meets the criteria.      Stephen asked for a show of hands if Ms. Fuller meets the fourth hardship, the vote passed with a 4 - 0 vote.

Passing all four cases of hardship Stephen motioned to grant Linda Fullers application for a variance 4-foot setback from the little river.  Seconded by Charlene the motion passed with a 4 -0 vote.

Approval of Minutes:    
September 1, 2009
"       Motioned by Stephen to approve as written , seconded by Charlene, the motion passed with 3 in favor and 1 abstained.

December 1, 2009 - note able to approve, hold for next meeting.

January 5, 2010  
"       Stephen motioned to approve as written allowing for Jack I to vote and revisit at the next meeting if there are any amendments by Dennis.  Seconded by Jack, the motion passed with 2 in favor and 2 abstaining.   

CEO Report -  none

Approval of bills: Portland Press Herald in the amount of $26.10.    Charlene motioned to pay 26.10, seconded by jack the motion passed with a 4 -0 vote.
        
Communications
Maine Townsman -issues from Jan - May
Resignation letter from Dennis Sweatt.
SMRPC annual meeting notification

Other Business
"       Election of officers:
Jack nominates Charlene for Vice Chairman, seconded by Stephen, a unanimous vote.     Charlene accepts.

Adjourn - Stephen moved to adjourn at 7:53pm, Charlene seconds the motion with a unanimous vote.  
 
                                                        Respectfully submitted,
                                                        Krystal L. Dyer


Approval Date:          

____________________________________________            __________________
Stephen Heroux, Chairman                                        Signature Date



 
Town of Buxton
  185 Portland Road, Buxton, ME 04093 (207) 929-5191
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