2008-10-23 Planning Board Meeting Minutes

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TOWN OF BOWDOINHAM

PLANNING BOARD MINUTES

October 23, 2008

 

 

Item 1:              Call Regular Planning Board meeting to order at 7:01 pm.

Members Present: Ellen Baum, Paul Beltramini, Brent Zachau, Billie Oakes and Todd Woofenden

Alternate Members Presents: Bill Shippen and Paul Baines

Also Present:  Nicole Briand, Planner & Code Enforcement Officer

 

Baum to act as Chairperson for this meeting.  Board discussed voting for a Chairperson and Vice Chairperson at the next meeting, after review of their by-laws.  Baum was nominated as Chair and Woofenden was nominated as Vice Chair.

 

Item 2:              Consideration of the June 26, 2008 Meeting Minutes

 

Oakes moves to approve minutes as amended, Woofenden seconded and all voted in favor.

 

Item 3:              Old Business

 

                        None

 

Item 4:              New Business

 

                        Timber Harvesting & Earthmoving Application – Robert Sherwood

River Road – Tax Map R12, Lot 015

The application is for allowance to exceed the Timber Harvesting Standards and for over 100 cubic yards of earth moving to create pasture fields.

 

Briand explained that one portion of the property has already been cut and violated the Town’s Timber Harvesting Standards within the Land Use Regulation & Shoreland Zoning Ordinance.  For Mr. Sherwood to rectify the violation either the property needs to be replanted so that it meets the standards or a permit has to be obtained from the Planning Board. 

 

Board asked Mr. Sherwood to present his application.

 

Mr. Sherwood explained to the Board that he is asking for permission to exceed the Town’s Timber Harvesting Standard and move over 100 cubic yards of earth in order to convert the property back into pasture and fields as it once was. 

§         The property owner has hired him to remove the timber for taxes. 

§         He will remove the necessary trees this winter then he will re-create the fields in 3-acre increments. 

§         He will be removing topsoil to sell and pay for the project, but he will leave 6-7 inches of topsoil for hay production.

§         The project will take 3-4 years to complete.

 

Board discussed the removal of topsoil and need to inspections to ensure that too much topsoil not removed from the property. 

 

Oakes asked that the boundaries of the property be flagged prior to cutting.

 

Sherwood agreed that he would have his surveyor flag the boundaries on the portion of the property he would be cutting prior to cutting.  The surveyor has also flagged the shoreland zone. 

 

Shippen asked for a letter from the surveyor stating that the property boundaries have been flagged prior to cutting.

 

Board asked Mr. Sherwood if any cutting would take place within the Shoreland Zone. 

 

Mr. Sherwood stated he was not planning on it. 

 

Briand explained that the ordinance does allow cutting within the Shoreland Zone, but it would have to meet the standards within the ordinances.

 

Oakes asked if any cutting will take place across the railroad tracks, as a crossing or permission will have to be obtained prior to doing so.

 

Baines noted that on the application the no box was checked for wetlands or waterbodies on-site and there are waterbodies on-site.

 

 Board agreed that this change needed to be noted on the Town’s file copy of the application.

 

Board reviewed Land Use Standards within the Land Use Regulation & Shoreland Zoning Ordinance:

 

E.         Erosion and Sedimentation Control

 

Filling, grading, lagooning, dredging, earth-moving activities, and other land use activities shall be conducted in such manner to prevent, to the maximum extent possible, erosion and sedimentation of surface waters.  To this end, all construction shall be accomplished in conformance with the erosion pre­vention provisions of "Environmental Quality Handbook Erosion and Sediment Control," published by the Maine Soil and Water Conservation Commission.

 

Finding – This should be a Condition of Approval

 

N.        Timber Harvesting

 

1.         No substantial accumulation of slash shall be left within fifty (50) feet of the normal high water mark of any pond, river, or salt water body as defined.  At distances greater than fifty (50) feet from the normal high water mark of such waters and extending to the limits of the area covered by this Ordinance, all slash shall be disposed of in such a manner that it lies on the ground and no part thereof extends more than four feet above the ground.

 

2.         Skid trails, log yards, and other sites where the operation of logging machinery results in the exposure of substantial areas of mineral soil shall be located such that an unscarified filter strip is retained be­tween the exposed mineral soil and the normal high water mark of any pond, river, or salt water body as defined.  The width of this strip shall vary according to the average slope of the land as follows:

 

                        Average Slope of Land Between                       Width of Strip Between Exposed

                        Exposed Mineral Soil and Normal                     Mineral Soil and Normal High

                        High Water Mark (percent)                              Water Mark (Feet along Surface

                                                                                                of the Ground)                         

                                                            0                                                                      25

                                                            10                                                                    45

                                                            20                                                                    65

                                                            30                                                                    85

                                                            40                                                                    105

                                                            50                                                                    125

                                                            60                                                                    145

                                                            70                                                                    165

 

3.         Harvesting operations shall be conducted in such a manner and at such a time that minimal soil disturbance results.  Adequate provision shall be made to prevent soil erosion and sedimentation of surface waters.

 

4.         Harvesting operations shall be conducted in such a manner that a well ­distributed stand of trees is retained.

 

5.         Harvesting activities shall not create single openings greater than seven thousand five hundred (7,500) square feet in the forest canopy.

 

6.         In any stand, harvesting shall remove not more than forty (40) percent of the volume of trees in any ten (10) year period.  For the purpose of these standards, a stand means a contiguous group of trees, sufficiently uniform in species, arrangement of age classes, and conditions, to be identifiable as a homogeneous and distinguishable unit.

 

7.         Timber harvesting operations not in conformance with 2, 4, 5, and 6 above may be allowed by the Planning Board upon approval of a permit granted in accordance with the provisions of Section 1-112-B subsection 6, paragraphs a-i upon a clear showing by the applicant that such an exception is necessary for proper timber management.   

 

            Finding - Subsections 4, 5, and 6 above are waived in order for the property to be converted back to fields and pasture.

 

 

Board reviews application using criteria in the Land Use Regulation & Shoreland Zoning Ordinance Section 1-112, #6:

 

1.            Will maintain safe or healthful conditions.

 

Woofenden makes motion that the standards for this section have been adequately met, because the proper best management practices shall be used to ensure this criterion is met.   Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

2.      Will not result in erosion or sedimentation.

 

         Woofenden makes motion that the standards for this section have been adequately met, because erosion and sedimentation controls shall be used and a buffer shall be maintained to the steep slopes. Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

3.      Will not result in water pollution.

 

         Woofenden makes motion that the standards for this section have been adequately met, because erosion and sedimentation controls shall be used, a buffer shall be maintained to the steep slopes and best management practices for forestry/timber harvesting and soil removal shall be used. Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

4.      Will not result in damage to spawning grounds, fish, aquatic life, bird and other wildlife habitat.

 

         Woofenden makes motion that the standards for this section have been adequately met, because the project should not degrade any wildlife habitat and sedimentation & erosion controls shall be used. Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

5.      Will conserve shoreland vegetation.

 

         Woofenden makes motion that the standards for this section have been adequately met, because any cutting within the Shoreland Zone shall meet the standards in the Town’s Shoreland Zoning Ordinance. Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

6.      Will conserve visual points of access to waters as viewed from public facilities.

 

         Woofenden makes motion that the standards for this section have been adequately met, because the project will create a larger view shed from Route 24 to the Shoreland Zone. Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

7.      Will conserve actual points of public access to waters.

 

         Woofenden makes motion that the standards for this section are not applicable, because the project will not affect the actual point of public access to waters. Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

8.      Will conserve natural beauty.

        

         Woofenden makes motion that the standards for this section have been adequately met, because the proposed project will not affect the natural beauty, as the land is being converted to pasture and hayfields. Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

9.      Will avoid problems associated with flood plain development and use.

 

         Woofenden makes motion that the standards for this section have been adequately met, because no cutting or earthmoving shall take place within a floodplain. Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

Woofenden moved to approve application with the following conditions of approval:

 

1.      Best management practices for forestry & timber harvesting shall be used.

2.      Best management practices for erosion & sedimentation control shall be used.

3.      No timber harvesting or earthmoving shall take place within the floodplain.

4.      A minimum of 6 inches of topsoil shall be left on the fields/pasture.

5.      All disturbed areas shall be reseeded.

6.      Permission to cross the railroad track shall be obtained in writing and a copy shall be submitted to the Town of Bowdoinham prior to any work being conducted on that portion of the property.

7.      A letter from a surveyor shall be submitted to the Town of Bowdoinham stating that the surveyor has flagged the property lines for that portion of the property prior to any work taking place on that portion of the property.

8.      The Town’s Code Enforcement Officer shall be notified for the inspection of the property after every three acre section is complete and prior to the start of the next three acre section.  The Town may hire a third party to conduct the site inspections at the expense of the applicant.

 

Oakes seconds and all vote in favor.

 

Site Plan Review Application – AT&T Mobility

River Road – Tax Map R11, Lot 007

The application is for a telecommunication tower.

 

Mr. Barry Hobbins introduced himself; he is the agent representing the applicant for the permitting process, along with his colleague Dan Cabral.  Mr. Bob Gashlin is a consultant for AT&T and found the site.

 

Mr. Hobbins went through the project narrative with the Board. 

§         A chain-link fence will surround the compound. 

§         There will be no lighting on the tower because it is under 200-feet tall.

 

Mr. Bob Gashlin is a consultant for AT&T and found the site.  The goal of this site is to bring service/improve service for the Route 24 corridor and reviewed the coverage maps with the Board.  AT&T co-locates with other carriers whenever possible, and they are currently located on the existing towers in the area. 

 

Baum asked if the tower could be a monopole. 

 

Mr. Gashlin stated that a monopole would be difficult to do at the height proposed due to the number and size of the cables going to the top of the tower with multiple carriers co-locating on this tower.

 

Woofenden asked if the tower would be visible from the Abagadasset River.  The Board agreed that it probably would not be.

 

Mr. Hobbins went over their submission waiver request for stormwater calculations, and water quality and/or phosphorous export management provisions.

 

Board reviews the application for completeness.  Briand reads through the submission checklist.

 

Woofenden makes motion to find application complete based on the condition that the following items are submitted:

 

§         The location of the benchmark used for the topography.

§         A tie line from the corner of the property line to the corner of the leased area.

§         Letter from Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife regarding impact on wildlife habitat.

§         Letter from Maine Natural Areas Program regarding unique natural communities, natural areas, and rare or endangered plants

§         Letter from Maine Historic Preservation Commission regarding historic or archaeological resources.

 

Zachau seconds motion and all vote in favor.

 

Baum said that a public hearing for this project will be held at the next Planning Board meeting on November 20th. 

 

The Board discussed dates to schedule a site walk and decided to schedule the site walk for November 5th at 8am.

 

Briand will do the noticing for both the site walk and pubic hearing.

 

Item 5:              Other Business

 

Item 6:              Adjourn Meeting at 8:54 pm