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Minutes of Zoning Commission, 01/25/2017

AGENDA: Zoning Commission

RECEIVED 01/26/2017 3:40pm

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Redding Zoning Commission
Public Hearing and Regular Meeting Minutes
January 25, 2017 – 7:30 p.m.
Town Hall Hearing Room
100 Hill Road, Redding, Connecticut

Present:  Chairman Gerry Casiello; Secretary Amy Atamian; Commissioner Ted Ogonek, Commissioner
Matt Lecher; Alternate Gary Miyashiro.
Also Present: Aimee Pardee, Zoning Officer; Applicant Annie Evans.

The Chairman called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.; regular commissioners in attendance were seated; the Chairman seated Mr. Miyashiro for Commissioner Paul Scholl.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

1.      Application 16 – 23Z:  77 Topstone Road (Assessor’s Map and Lot No. 19 – 40); Owner Martin P. Robinson and Annie Evans.  Request for a Special Use Permit for an in-house accessory apartment, in accordance with Section 5.12 of the Redding Zoning Regulations.  Received December 14, 2016; Public Hearing January 25, 2017.

Ms. Atamian read the call for the hearing.  On the motion of  Mr. Ogonek, and the second of Mr. Lecher, the Commission voted unanimously to accept the call and open the hearing at 7:30 p.m.

The Chairman asked the applicant, Ms. Evans, to speak regarding the application.  He asked her the size of her property, which she replied was over four acres.  She stated that the apartment was in the house when her husband purchased the property but the fact that was not legal only recently came up during the process of re-financing the house.  The Commission reviewed the plans for the apartment, noting that the size of the apartment and available parking are in accordance with the regulations.  The Chairman reviewed comments from Health Official Doug Hartline, and from the Planning Commission.

Hearing no further comments or questions, Mr. Ogonek moved that the hearing be closed.  Ms. Atamian seconded the motion and the Commission voted unanimously to close the hearing at 7:35 p.m.

2.      Application 16 – 24Z:  Commission initiated revision of the Redding Zoning Regulations Section 5.12 controlling accessory apartments.  Received December 14, 2016; Public Hearing January 25, 2017.

Ms. Atamian read the call for the hearing.  On the motion of  Mr. Ogonek, and the second of Mr. Lecher, the Commission voted unanimously to accept the call and open the hearing at 7:35 p.m.

The Chairman recapped the discussion from the December meeting when the Commission decided to put forward the new regulations regarding accessory apartments.  He noted that the Town Plan of Development has always supported accessory apartments for a number of reasons, including that they can support residents “aging in place”.  The revised regulations hope to further support that process by allowing the home owner to live in either the primary dwelling or the accessory dwelling.  The revised regulations also increase the allowed size for an accessory dwelling, making it more attractive for a couple, and also removed the need for a lot size 50% larger than normally required in a zone in order to have a detached apartment.

There was a discussion regarding conforming lots; Mr. Ogonek asked about one acre lots in town.  Ms. Pardee noted that the vast majority of those lots, except for some in the Georgetown area, are pre-existing, non-conforming and therefore would still not be eligible to have a detached accessory dwelling.

The Commission reviewed correspondence received.  The Chairman read a memo that had been received from Planning while noting that substantive change could not be made to the revised regulations since they have already been published for the hearing.  The Commission discussed the Planning Commission objection to the removal of the requirement of the applicant to provide a list of property owners within 500 feet of the subject property.  The Chairman noted that this provision is being removed simply for housekeeping as the list is not actually used; the Special Permit process for having an apartment requires only the notification of abutting property owners.  Ms. Pardee also stated that she believes this is in keeping with the State Statutes.  The need to require applicants to provide separate electric and phone service for the apartment was also considered; the consensus was that it was not zoning’s purview to decide how the homeowner wishes to manage their electric service, and that hard wire phone service is growing obsolete.

Hearing no further comments or discussion, Mr. Lecher moved that the hearing be closed.  Ms. Atamian seconded the motion and the Commission voted unanimously to close the hearing at 7:45 p.m.

REGULAR MEETING (immediately following Public Hearing):

Regular commissioners in attendance were seated; the Chairman seated Mr. Miyashiro for Commissioner Paul Scholl.

1.      Approval of Minutes: Regular Meeting December 14, 2016
On the motion of Ms. Atamian, and the second of Mr. Ogonek, the Commission voted unanimously to accept the minutes of the meeting of December 14, 2016, as written.

2.      Application 16 – 23Z: 77 Topstone Road (Assessor’s Map and Lot No. 19 – 40);
Owner: Martin P. Robinson and Annie Evans.  Request for a Special Use Permit for an in-house accessory apartment, in accordance with Section 5.12 of the Redding Zoning Regulations.   If public hearing is closed, for discussion/action.
After a brief discussion, Mr. Lecher moved that the Commission approve application 16 -23Z.  Mr. Ogonek seconded the motion and it was carried unanimously.

3.      Application 16 – 24Z: Commission initiated revision of the Redding Zoning Regulations Section 5.12 controlling accessory apartments.   If public hearing is closed, for discussion/action.
The Commission again discussed the comments from the Planning Commission.  At the conclusion of the discussion, Ms. Atamian moved that the Commission adopt the revised regulations as written.  Mr. Ogonek seconded the motion and it was carried unanimously.  The Chairman noted that it is unclear how the Commission should consider the letter from Planning in terms of voting since it stated that the revised regulations were endorsed by Planning, excepting three points noted in their letter of January 25, 2017.  However he further noted that, since the regulations were adopted in a unanimous vote of 5 members, the vote overrides any concern regarding the endorsement.

4.      Application 17- 01Z – 11 Wayside Lane (Assessor’s Map and Lot No. 36-69): Owner: Daisy Shelley, Request for a Special Use Permit for an accessory apartment in accordance with Section 5.12 of the Redding Zoning Regulations. To receive/schedule public hearing.
The Commission briefly reviewed application 17-01Z, noting that it requires a public hearing.  On the motion of Ms. Atamian and the second of Mr. Ogonek, the Commission voted unanimously to accept the application and set the public hearing for the second meeting in February [February 22, 2017].

5.      Application 17-02Z – 37 Lonetown Road (Assessor’s Map #21 & Lot 42A): Owner: Town of Redding,  Applicant The Mark Twain Library – In accordance with Section 5.11.2 of the Redding Zoning Regulations request for a Limited Duration Special Permit for the Mark Twain Library’s 22nd “Annual Frog Frolic” to be held at the Redding Community Center, on Saturday April 29, 2017 from 10:00am through 4:00pm.  Previously held on April 30, 2016.   For discussion/action.
The Chairman stated that this event has been held for many years: the event is well run and loved by the community.  On the motion of Mr. Lecher and the second of Ms. Atamian, the Commission voted unanimously to grant Limited Duration Special Use Permit 17-02Z.

6.      Application 17-03Z – 101 Marchant Road (Assessor’s Map #12 & Lot 79): Owner New Pond Farm Foundation, Applicant John McCleary – In accordance with Section 5.11.2 of the Redding Zoning Regulations request for a Limited Duration Special Permit for New Pond Farm’s annual “Run for the Cows” on Saturday May 7, 2017.  Previously held on May 1, 2016.   For discussion/action.

The Chairman stated that this event has been held for several years.  The applicant coordinates the run with the Redding Police Department and there have been no issues with the event.  On the motion of Ms. Atamian and the second of Mr. Lecher, the Commission voted unanimously to grant Limited Duration Special Use Permit 17-03Z.

7.      Discussion:
Ms. Pardee noted upcoming land use training, by members of the Connecticut Bar Association, at Wesleyan University in March.
Ms. Atamian brought up an application that had appeared before the WPCC for a “brewpub” on Main Street, in the building previously occupied by the restaurant “Aranci”.  The Commission held a brief discussion regarding “brewpubs” and what associated activities may be subject to their review.

8.      Future Agenda Items:
Application 17-01Z: Public Hearing February 22, 2017.
Ms. Pardee also noted that the Mark Twain Library will be looking for a Site Plan Revision in order to replace permeable pavement that is not wearing well in their recently completed parking lot.

9.      Communication:
The Chairman read into the record a letter from Alternate Steve Gagnon resigning from the Commission.

10.  Adjournment:
On the motion of Ms. Atamian and the second of Mr. Ogonek, the Commission voted unanimously to adjourn the meeting at 8:05 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted,

Aimee Pardee

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