by Margo Callaghan
The subject of enforcement of zoning bylaws came up on two occasions during the Selectboard meeting on July 10. The first time was during the Citizen Participation portion to the agenda, when an audience member raised concern over Route 7 Discount Beverage’s lack of compliance with the Town’s zoning bylaws. This was mentioned in connection with the business’ signage, and it was suggested to the Board that they consider pulling the business’ liquor license in the face of continued noncompliance. Town Manager Paul Bohne said that the Town was continuing to work with the owners, and that the next step would be to file a complaint with the courts.
A second issue of zoning came as a result of the continued discussion (from the June 26 Selectboard meeting) concerning fill Marcos Llona’s had delivered and spread on his property located at 141 Pinehurst Drive. Llona’s reiterated his position that he believed he had permission from Town Zoning Administrator John Adams to bring in the fill. The Board opted to give Llona an opportunity to develop an erosion control plan for his property within 45 days. “You want me to take full responsibility for the erosion control plan,” Llona questioned, and continued, ”you are saying it is my responsibility, 100 percent even though the Town has made a mistake?” Chair Bill Smith reminded Llona that the issue was before the Board as a procedural matter, and not to determine liability. The Board voted to give Llona a 45 day time frame to develop and submit the plan.
The Board also reviewed proposed changes to the Town’s Zoning Ordinance at the public hearing portion of the meeting. Members of the Planning Commission, as well as the Development Review Board were on hand for the review of the changes. Planning Chair Brian Precourt suggested that the Commission would not be surprised to have some of their proposals returned to them for further review, and that the Committee would like to have more time to discuss proposed changes. Mark Sammut from the DRB, in discussions of the Lake Shore District changes acknowledged, “This is stop gap; we don’t have consensus on how the Lake Shore District should be handled.”
The following proposed ordinances were returned to the Planning Commission for further discussion and edification:
• 2020.2 permits required for small areas and volumes of fill.
• 1750.2 Exclusion of basements spaces as a primary building component in the Lakeshore Overlay.
The Selectboard approved the proposed changes to the following ordinances:
• 430.1B Reducing Frontage for single family homes in the Village Residential District
• 1970.3 Period allowed for temporary signs
• 1970.11 Sign requirements in the Shelburne Falls Zoning District
Village Green and Parade area landscape plans (PDF of PLAN)
Michael Buscher of T.J. Boyle and Associates presented three plans updating the master plan for Shelburne’s Village Green and the Parade. The future visions for the Parade incorporated plans for a Veterans memorial, in addition to feedback gleaned from earlier meetings. The three plans include the addition of a screen hedge along the northern edge of the property and updated tree plans. The second set of plans includes a sidewalk along Church Street, with additional walkways and seating area around the memorial. The final plan Buscher presented called for a green strip between the sidewalk and Church Street parking and incorporated a band shell with the Veterans memorial. Audience member David Webster voiced his opinion, saying, “I think less is more” and went on to say that he would be in favor of fewer structures. Other overall comments regarding the plans included:
• consider landscaping to promote access to the Farmers Market
• keep tree umbrella minimal to improve visibility of shops along Falls Road
• make sure that plans call for minimal maintenance and upkeep
• determine whether tables to promote on site eating is desirable
Town Planner Dean Pierce said he will conduct a survey to gauge public feedback on the proposed plans, and to collect additional ideas for the areas.
Smith read a letter from Wake Robin CEO Allie Stickney and President of the WR Association Nancy Goodrich which was written in response to the June 26 SSTA /CCTA budget discussion, and referred to quotes made by Selectboard member Gary von Stange concerning WR residents use of SSTA subsidized transportation. The letter pinpointed that the number of WR residents utilizing the SSTA service was 17 out of 335, and that each of those riders averaged two trips per week. Following the reading, von Stange stated that the issue he raised was with the premium services offered by CCTA without knowledge of the Selectboard.