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Planning Board Minutes 01/08/2015
Chichester Planning Board
Minutes of Meeting
Thursday, January 8, 2015

Members Present:  Vice-Chairman Tom Jameson, Ex-Officio Jeffrey Jordan, Stan Brehm, Thomas Houle, Allen Mayville, Richard Moore and Secretary Jamie A Pike.

Others Present: Don Peterman, Donna Chagnon, Doug Hall, Dennis Nolin, Web Stout, Kate Hall, Mark McIntosh

Vice-Chairman Jameson called the meeting to order at 6:35pm.

The minutes of December 4, 2014 were reviewed.  A motion was made by Mr. Jordan and seconded by Mr. Houle to approve the minutes as written. Motion passes.

Lot Line Adjustment:  Dennis Nolin and Dennis & Kathy Nolin, Map 6 Lots 20 & 22 respectively located on Canterbury Road.

Dennis Nolin, Owner, and Webb Stout, surveyor, were present to speak on the merits of the proposal.

The purpose of this application is to transfer 10.06 acres from Map 6 Lot 20 to Map 6 Lot 22.  The remaining portion of Lot 20 encompasses 5.871 acres and has 300 feet of frontage on Canterbury Road and is located in the Rural-Agricultural Zone. The lot supports an existing single-family home, with existing well and septic.  A letter certifying that there are no jurisdictional wetlands upon the lot has been submitted by Schauer Environmental Consultants.  The receiving lot, Lot 22, will encompass 64.1± acres, and was previously found to be conforming in a subdivision duly recorded at the Merrimack County Registry of Deeds as Docket# 201400008796, and approved by the Planning Board on June 2, 2014.

Being no further discussion, a motion was made by Mr. Mayville and seconded by Mr. Jordan to accept the application as complete.  Motion passes.

Vice-Chairman Jameson opened the public hearing upon the above application.

There were no abutters present.

Without further discussion, a motion was made by Mr. Brehm and seconded by Mr.  Jordan to approve the application as presented.  Motion passes.

Zoning Amendment #1:  Signage Ordinance

Vice-Chairman Jameson opened the public hearing upon the ordinance.

Mr. Jameson explained to the public present that the Board remains in favor of the ordinance as presented last year and has brought it back for consideration again.

Mr. Moore reviewed his comments previously distributed by email.  

Art 3, Section 7 : Signs.
1.      This version looks a little different than I recalled from last year.  I thought we had some items about a banner for every 50 ft of road frontage, …. and some other different items that elude me at the moment.
2.      I am relatively ok with most items in this version – some minor items are listed below:
a.      Can we increase the font size for each numbered section and maybe use bold font or some technique to highlight the sections?
b.      Sect 3 I   -   do we need to define holidays to avoid some self made holiday that would be used to display something that most of the Town would prefer not to display?  I do not have any examples.
c.      Sect 3 n  - I am not real comfortable with any of the banner section, size, 5 per parcel, …  - can we brainstorm at our meeting?
d.      Sect 5 f --  not sure I am clear on the restriction of signs on trees and rocks
e.      Sect 7 – should we adjust the title, the computations actually appear to be in section 8
f.       Sect 8   b   8  - do we need this reference to class IV and class V roads in the CI/MF zone?

Art 3   Sect 18  Outdoor lighting
This looks a little different than my recollection of last year too.  Did last years version include something about allowing flags to be lit at a residence in any or all zones?  Probably some other loose ends that I do not recall at the moment.  Some misc items in this version include:
1.      Section B – we do not define a lumen but we refer to a lumen in the foot-candle definition
2.      Sect II  2)   why do we allow 0.2 ft candles of trespass instead of zero
3.      Will flags be allowed to be lit from the ground?

Mr. Brehm recommends that the section regarding banners be removed completely and added to the section covering signs that are not permitted.  Mr. Houle rebutted that the business owners have expressed the desire to have the ability to use banners to advertise or draw attention to their commerce space.  Mr. Mayville concurs with this statement.  Mr. Jameson expressed his concern over the limit of 5 banners per parcel, where some businesses with excess frontage may be at a disadvantage by not being able to utilize all their frontage.  Mr. Moore feels the parcel limitation is appropriate. Mr. Peterman, owner of SparksFly Fireworks, stated that he felt the presented banner language is appropriate and satisfies the needs of the businesses. Ms. Hall does not feel that banners are of value to businesses.  Mr. Hall stated that he is opposed to the amendment in its entirety.  Mr. Hall feels several items need clarification.  Mr. Hall submitted a lengthy document outlining his comments.  He furthered that several terms need specific definitions, such as portable, banner, tenant, and principle use.  He furthered that the Board appears to be amending the ordinance to catch up with the ZBA in their actions of granting variances.  Mr. Hall also stated that he does not object to EMC’s but does not agree with the amount of time between frames.  Mr. Moore acknowledges that the ordinance may have flaws, as well does the rest of the Zoning Ordinance, but is consistent with what has been approved in the past and is a major improvement over the existing ordinance.  

Mr. McIntosh stated that he felt some of the confusion at the last election is the interpretation of the Commercial Village and what is expected of the long-term development of the area.   Mr. Brehm explained that the idea behind the zone was that it increased density and create a slowdown or traffic calming effect.  It was designed for smaller compact business types.  

Mr. Jameson stated that the trend with the DOT is encouraging larger typefaces for the aging population, and feels that the standard 64 sq/ft as currently allowed does not provide adequate space to transmit a message.
Mr. Hall stated that the Board should not be drafting an ordinance for the purpose of satisfying the demands of the business community but to satisfy the needs of the entire community as a whole.  

With respect to banners, Mr. Peterman explained that his property is small with limited frontage, the sign is partially obstructed from vehicles travelling west, and was limited in architectural design based on the type of business, and therefore his banners are essential for attracting summer business and letting the travelling public know where his business is located. He stated he does not use his banners in the winter.  

The Board members engaged in discussion about if any changes to the presented ordinance was necessary.  The Board discussed the size limit of EMC’s and felt that the maximum limit of 132 square feet was excessive.  A motion was made by Mr. Brehm and seconded by Mr. Jordan to amend the ordinance to include language limiting any EMC to not more than 32 square feet.  Motion passes.

Zoning Amendment #2:  Impact Fee Ordinance

Vice-Chairman Jameson opened the public hearing upon the ordinance.

There was no discussion upon the amendment.

The Board was in agreement that both amendments shall move forward as presented and/or amended during this public hearing.  The Zoning Amendments will be presented to the Town Clerk for inclusion in the upcoming election on March 10, 2015.

Without further discussion, a motion was made by Mr. Mayville and seconded by Mr. Houle to adjourn the meeting at 8:51pm.  Motion passes.

Respectfully submitted,

                                                        Not approved until signed.

Jamie A Pike

Thomas Jameson, Vice Chairman

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