Chichester Planning Board
Minutes of Meeting
Thursday November 9, 2017
Members Present: Chairman Stan Brehm, Dr. Kevin Mara DVM, Michael Williams, Richard Moore, Kevin Mara, Tom Jameson ex-officio, Tom Houle, Richard Bouchard and Kristy Barnouski Secretary.
Others present: Jodi Pinard, Doug Hall, Mark Blanchard, George Ryan, Mrs. Ryan, John Rokeh, Mike Patenaude of Watchfire and other members of the public.
Mr. Brehm called the meeting to order at 6:30pm.
The Board reviewed the minutes of October 12, 2017 and made some minor grammatical errors.
Mr. Willams made a motion and Mr. Houle seconded to approve the minutes of 10/12/2017 with the grammatical changes. Motion passes.
Public Hearing-Electronic Message Boards
Mr. Brehm stated that the purpose of the Zoning Amendment would be to allow for electronic message signs.
Mr. Doug Hall was the first to speak about the proposed zoning amendment. He also provided a written comments page on the subject. Mr. Hall stated that one reason to restrict signs is public safety on the highways. Mr. Hall was in favor of the electronic message boards, however, he proposed the following amendment for section 3.18, IV.1:
“Moving, fluttering, blinking, or flashing lights or signs are prohibited. The display of an electronic sign may have no animation in its display and the display may change no more often than once per day.”
Mr. Ryan of Concord Tractor stated that he would like to put up a nonhazardous sign but would like to be able to change the display every 15min to 1 hour.
Mr. Blanchard of Bobcat stated that he would like to be able to use his current electronic message sign that was grandfathered to its full potential and be able to change the sign more often.
Mrs. Pinard, the Town Administrator stated that she was in full support of the amendment. She stated that she would never want to change the rural interior of Chichester but would like to give the business owners better signage for their properties and entice new business to move to Chichester to build up Rt. 4 and Rt. 28 and build a stronger tax base. Mrs. Pinard reported that the Town has added 3.9 million dollars in assessed value and the tax rate still went up .41.
Mr. Jameson stated that he felt that the signs and lettering should be larger for safety so people are not distracted trying to read smaller lettering.
Mike of Watchfire came to the Board to discuss how he helped Laconia build their sign ordinance using language restricting the brightness referring to it being measured in knits. He stated that some sign distributors offer “zoning friendly software” that includes automatic dimming which controls brightness and intensity. He offered some advice on how many knits are appropriate to use during the daylight and night. Mr. Patenaude also stated that the federal guidelines for timing for the changing of the signs is every 8 seconds on a highway.
Mr. Moore stated that he would like to find out if there is a specific formula for speed to use to indicate what the appropriate timing should be for Rt. 4.
The Board continued the public meeting until the next regular meeting on December 7, 2017. The remaining issues will be discussed further at that time.
Mr. Williams made a motion and Mr. Houle seconded to continue the public hearing until December 7, 2017. Motion passes.
Public Hearing- Illumination of Flags
The purpose of the amendment is to not give preferential treatment to any group.
Mr. Hall stated that it is not the flag that he has an issue with but it’s the up lighting of the flag. He does want to prohibit any up lighting. Mr. Hall stated that he feels this ordinance could allow a business to up light any banner they may deem a “flag”. He stated that there are many banners on Rt. 4 used for advertisement that are not allowed that may be able to be lit up with the proposed amendment.
Mr. Jameson stated his concern that he did not want to restrict residences in the commercial zone.
A motion was made by Mr. Houle and seconded by Mr. Williams to put the proposed amendment on the ballot. Motion passes.
DBU-discussion on proposed garage
Mr. Rokeh who was representing DBU construction came before the Board to discuss whether or not the business needed a site plan review to add a storage garage. Mr. Rokeh stated that the DBU is proposing to add a 40X40 heated storage garage for equipment. Mr. Cole the Building Inspector had denied their request for a building permit sending them to the Planning Board for approval first. After some discussion the Board came to a consensus that there will be no change of impact for the property.
Mr. Williams made a motion and Dr. Mara seconds that the construction of the proposed garage is not a change of use. Motion passes.
Mr. Moore stated that he visited the USDA office to ask some questions about zoning and soil mapping. The Board then discussed changing the Chichester soil type zoning for a simpler format.
The Board asked Mrs. Barnouski to research the surrounding towns zoning, such as Loudon, Epsom and Pembroke and email it to the Board.
Adjournment- Having no further business, a motion was made by Mr. Williams and seconded by Mr. Jordan to adjourn the meeting at 8:46pm
Kristy Barnouski, Secretary
Not approved until signed.
Chairman, Stan Brehm