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Welcome to the Town of Chilmark, MA
Conservation Commission Minutes 12/19/12
FINAL
Present for the Conservation Commission and attending the meeting were:  Pam Goff, Chairman, Sandy Broyard, Vice Chairman, Wesley Cottle, Joan Malkin, Candy Shweder and Chuck Hodgkinson.  Chris Alley, Tom Tate, John Abrams, Reid Silva, Adam Moore, Patrick Crosgrove, Rebecca Gilbert, Bill Bennett and Joe Tierney also attended.   

The meeting came to order at 12:30 PM.  Ms. Goff welcomed new Associate Commissioner Candy Shweder and appointed her as a voting member for the day’s agenda.  The site visits were made on December 18.   

NOI SE 12 – 672; CHRIS ALLEY FOR ADAM ZOIA; 18 Point Inner Way;          AP 33-114:  Ms. Goff opened the public hearing at 12:30 PM.  Mr. Alley reviewed the plans to 1. Add two granite posts and an entrance gate to the driveway.  2.  Rebuild the pre-existing, non-conforming five-sided gazebo that has a closet, daybed and desk by:  stripping the building to it’s existing framing; re-sheath, re-shingle, re-roof, install a vapor barrier under the floor; the size, roof height and footprint will not change; new windows will be installed in the existing openings; no water, heat, insulation or A/C will be installed; power service will be maintained.  3.  Rebuild the existing boathouse by:  stripping the building to its existing framing; replace the exterior sheathing with natural, vertical wooden boards as currently exist and install a new roof.  The size, height and footprint of the structure will not change; new windows will be installed in the existing openings; no water, shower, heat, insulation or A/C will be installed; power service will be maintained; the exterior lighting will be improved to minimize night sky light pollution; the existing cinder-block foundation will remain as is.  4.  Replace the existing stairway down the bank to the dock and add a boardwalk.  No lighting will be installed on the stair, walkway or boardwalk.  The activity is within the 100-foot buffer zone of the Quitsa Pond Coastal Bank and within the 100-foot buffer zone of a Bordering Vegetated Wetland.

Ms. Goff suggested the Commission hear each proposal in sequence.  1.  The entrance gate:  Mr. Alley said the gate will be manually operated – not electronically and it will not have any lights.  It is 94 feet from the wetland edge that is on the far side (east) of Point Inner Way.  2.  The Gazebo:  Mr. Alley added the tree that is between the gazebo and the stone wall will need to have the two limbs overhanging the structure pruned.  The tree will be left in place.  3.  The boathouse:  The new roof will be made of cedar shingles instead of asphalt which are currently on the roof.  All work will be done by hand and the debris will be removed from the site daily.  The Commission suggested placing ground tarps on the pond side (down slope) of the structure and to the east to capture any smaller debris.  Mr. Alley agreed.  4.  The walkway and stairs down the bank to the dock:         Mr. Alley explained the preferred method for the stair supports is a helical support system that will be hand-screwed into the bank.  If sub-surface boulders are found, they propose using a diamond pier system with anchor pins.  The Land Bank uses this system on many of its walkways.  He added the owner may want to add ground lighting for the stairs.  No new trenching for power conduit or lines would be needed.  The Commission suggested returning to the Site Review Committee to discuss the ground lighting – if pursued.  In discussion the Commission thought the proposed walkway may reduce the observed erosion of the bank on the current walking path near the boathouse.  It went on to ask if vegetation could be planted to contain the erosion on the bank.  Mr. Alley agreed.  

The Commission read the Site Review Committee report and the letter from abutter Ken Iscol for the record.  The Commission asked if accurate current dimensions exist for the gazebo and boathouse.  Mr. Alley produced accurate scale drawings for both structures.  The site plan has the current surveyed foot prints.

Before closing the hearing the Commission added that the area on the pond side of the stone retaining walls north of the main house has been mowed and the landscape plan designates this area as a no cut zone.  Also, the owner had pruned some of the vegetation on the bank and has no view maintenance permit.  The Commission said no further pruning or mowing in this area is allowed without the appropriate permits.

With no comment from the public a motion was made to close the hearing at 1:10 PM.  The motion was seconded and unanimously approved.  A subsequent motion was made to approve the plans as presented with the following special conditions:

  • All construction debris shall be stored in a covered dumpster or removed from the site daily.
  • A snow fence and a ground tarp shall also be installed around the boathouse to capture any falling debris from the renovation.  Both shall be installed before work begins without disturbing the existing ground vegetation.
  • The helix anchors shall be used to support the stairway down the bank.  Diamond piers with pins may be used as an alternative if there are sub-surface rock obstructions.
  • No trenching is allowed on the coastal bank—for electrical conduit or any other reason.
  • Vegetation shall be planted down the bank to stem the walkway erosion that is evident on the existing path.
  • A pre-construction conference shall take place on site among the contractor(s) and the Conservation Agent to review this Order and approve all installed erosion control measures.
The motion was seconded and with no discussion passed unanimously with five in favor.

NOI SE12 – 671; REID SILVA FOR NANCY KIDD; 11 Greenhouse Lane;            AP 33-151:  Ms. Goff opened the public hearing at 1:15 PM.  Mr. Silva reviewed the plan to abandon and fill the existing 3-bedroom failed cesspool and upgrade the septic system that is in the buffer zone of a Bordering Vegetated Wetland.  He presented a revised site plan dated 12/19/12.  The proposed location for the new septic system was changed because abutter Peter Darling told him there is an active well inside the shed near the lot line.  Mr. Silva said he was previously told the well was abandoned.  The new septic will be located just south of the main house.  Its closest point is 44 feet from the wetland edge.  The proposed new well is outside the wetland buffer zone and is required to upgrade the septic system by the Board of Health.  The Commission asked if there will be adequate separation between the leach field and ground water.  Mr. Silva said he will ask for a variance from the Board of Health.  If it is not approved a raised system will be installed to increase the separation from the ground water.  The Commission read a letter from abutter Peter Darling for the record.

With no comment from the public a motion was made to close the hearing at 1:25 PM.  The motion was seconded and unanimously approved.  A subsequent motion was made to approve the site plan dated 12/19/12 with the following special conditions:  1. Hay bales and silt fencing shall be installed between the new septic system and the wetland edge and approved by the Conservation Agent before work begins.  2.  The Board of Health must also approve the relocated septic system and well.  3.  There shall be no underground storage of fuel oil.  The motion was seconded and with no further discussion approved unanimously with five in favor.

RFD JOE TIERNEY FOR DIANA BARRETT AND ROBERT VILA; 183 State Rd.; AP 33-115:  Mr. Tierney reviewed the plan to enclose an existing 15’ X 12’ raised deck with a covered screened porch and build an additional 504 sq. ft. ground level deck that is 36’ X 14’.  Both decks are within the 100-foot buffer zones of two fresh water ponds.  The closest activity is approximately 77 feet from the eastern pond; 60 feet from the western pond and 65 feet from the wetland edge as shown on the site plan dated 12/18/12.  The Commission commented that it has seen similar plans to enclose open decks in the past that eventually became enclosed living space.  With no comment from the public a motion was made for a negative determination with the following special conditions:  1. No glass inserts, heat, insulation or winterizing measures are allowed on the screened porch.  2.  Hay bales and silt fencing shall be installed around the three sides of the ground-level deck and approved by the Conservation Agent before work begins.  The motion was seconded and unanimously approved with five in favor.

NOI SE 12 – 673; CHRIS ALLEY FOR 308 SOUTH RD. TRUST (KAPOR); 308 South Rd.; AP 24-204:  Ms. Goff opened the public hearing at 1:35 PM.  Mr. Alley reviewed the plans to re-build, license and maintain an existing walkway and fixed pier in Chilmark Pond that was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.  He added Steve Ewing will do the work and mirror the methods used for the Cottle walkway on the abutting lot.  A fiberglass grating will be used for the walkway to allow light penetration.  Timber decking will be used over the pond section that can be removed in the winter.  5” to 6” cedar or locust posts with butterfly brackets and pins will be used to support the pier.  With no comment from the public a motion was made to close the hearing at 1:42 PM.  The motion was seconded and unanimously approved.  A subsequent motion was made to approve the plan as presented with the following special conditions:  1. The replacement walkway and pier are approved provided there is no significant comment from the NHESP.  2.  Staging shall be used to protect the salt marsh when driving the 5”-6” cedar or locust spiles.  3.  A grating shall be used for the walkway over the salt marsh instead of planking to increase light penetration.  4.  Any construction equipment shall be fueled outside the resource area and 100-foot buffer zone.  5.  The pier shall be licensed with the Commonwealth.  6.  Perpetual maintenance is allowed provided the plans are reviewed with the Commission or its Agent before work begins and all conditions of this Order are met.  The motion was seconded and with no further discussion passed unanimously with five in favor.

RFD CHRIS ALLEY FOR PETER BERNARD; 5 Shotnaigher Lane; AP 34-1.1:   Mr. Alley presented the plan to install an array of ground-mounted photo-voltaic panels.  The array will be approximately 80 feet long and four feet wide and located in the       100-foot buffer zone of a Bordering Vegetated Wetland.  The closest activity is 44 feet from the wetland edge.  The Commission asked if there is an alternative location for the panels outside the buffer zone.  Mr. Alley explained there is a tightly restricted building envelope for the site that is a condition of the subdivision.  Mr. Bennett added a steel I beam will be driven into the ground every two meters to support the panels.  The panels will be high enough above grade to allow for mowing underneath.  The Commission asked if the panels will concentrate the rain water runoff similar to roof water runoff.  The Site Review Committee report was read for the record.  After much discussion a motion was made for a negative determination with the following special conditions:       1. The array shall be moved back to be at least 50 feet from the wetland edge.  2.  Hay bales and silt fencing shall be installed between the array and wetland edge and approved by the Conservation Agent before work begins.  3.  An inspection shall be scheduled one year after installation to determine if additional shrub planting is required down grade to mitigate erosion.  The motion was seconded and passed unanimously with five in favor.

NOI SE 12 – 674; CHRIS ALLEY FOR I FOUND MY THRILL, LLC; 74 North Rd.; AP 3-2:  Ms. Goff opened the public hearing at 1:52 PM.  Mr. Abrams apologized for attempting to include the demolition of the art shack without filing a proper application.  He added a separate filing will be made.  His intent was to demonstrate how the removal of the art shack will result in a net reduction of building footprint in the buffer zone – if the proposed renovation and expansion plans are approved.  The art shack will be re-built outside the buffer zone.  

Mr. Alley reviewed the comments made at the site visit and summarized the plan to expand an existing dwelling in the buffer zone of a Bordering Vegetated Wetland.  Approximately 392 sq. ft. will be added to the dwelling with 160 sq. ft. added to the porch.  The existing septic tank and pump chamber will be relocated outside the 100-foot wetland buffer zone; and the driveway and parking area will be relocated -- portions of which are in the wetland buffer zone.  Six trees will need to be removed and the stumps ground.  The proposed addition will have a crawl space foundation.

The Commission asked if the added screened porch can be relocated to the east in the “L” design so the outside edge is not closer to the wetland edge than the existing structure.  Mr. Abrams agreed this could be done.  

The Commission asked Mr. Moore, Executive Director of the Sheriff’s Meadow Foundation to comment on the plan and whether or not it is consistent with the Conservation Restriction (CR) the Foundation holds for the property.  Mr. Moore reviewed two letters dated December 18, 2012 outlining the terms of the CR and how to interpret them.  He referred to an opinion written by attorney Jane Kaplan in 1994 for a previous expansion proposal.  He added the new owner’s master plan for the property will reduce the overall structural footprint and reduce the use impact on the resources by converting it from a public Inn to a private residence.  The public Mill Brook trail system will be maintained.  Abutter Rebecca Gilbert mentioned the new owners discussed the plan with her and she is happy with the direction.

With no further comment from the public a motion was made to close the hearing at    2:15 PM.  The motion was seconded and unanimously approved.  A subsequent motion was made to approve the plan as presented with the following special conditions:            1. There is no significant comment from the NHESP.  2.  The screened porch on the south side of the structure and facing the wetland shall be relocated and attached to the east wing of the house to increase its distance from the wetland edge. The outer edge of the porch will be farther from the wetland than the existing structure and footprint.  A revised plan showing this change shall be provided before work begins.  3.  There shall be no underground storage of fuel oil.  4.  The terms of the existing Conservation Restriction dated 11/28/79 shall apply which is on file at the County of Dukes County Registry of Deeds Book 644 Page 857.  The motion was seconded and with no discussion passed unanimously with five in favor.  

ADMINISTRATION:  

The December 5, 2012 meeting minutes were reviewed and approved as presented by consensus.

The following documents were signed:

        Order of Conditions Zoia; SE 12 – 672; AP 33-114.
        Order of Conditions Kidd; SE 12 – 671; AP 33-151.
       Order of Conditions 308 South Rd. Trust (Kapor); SE 12 – 673; AP 24-204.
        Order of Conditions I Found My Thrill; SE 12 – 674; AP 3-2.
        Determination of Applicability Barrett, Vila; AP 33-115.
        Determination of Applicability Bernard; AP 34-1.1.

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday, January 16, 2013 @ 12:30 PM.

With no further business to conduct the meeting adjourned at 2:45 PM.
Respectfully submitted by Chuck Hodgkinson, C.A.S.


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