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Welcome to the Town of Chilmark, MA
Zoning Board of Appeals Minutes 10/26/16
FINAL

Present for the Board of Appeals and attending the meeting were Frank LoRusso, Chairman,     Chris Murphy, Vice Chairman, Todd Christy, Wendy Weldon, Allison Burger, Russell Maloney, Allen Healy and Chuck Hodgkinson.  Reid Silva, Doug Liman, Lenny Jason, Douglas Brayley, James Langlois, Eric Peters, Jay Walsh, Rich Regen, Bill Rossi, Damon Vickers, David and Margaret Emerson, Frank, Heidi and Peter Dunkl, James Moffatt, Chuck Sullivan, Kris Horiuchi and Cliff Lasser also attended.       

Mr. LoRusso opened the meeting at 5:00 PM and appointed alternate member Todd Christy as a voting member as needed and for the Grazda continued hearing.

CYNTHIA BRUDNICK; Article 6 Section 6.6; 73 Bijah’s Way; Map 7 Lot 12:                  Mr. Maloney recused himself as an abutter.  Mr. LoRusso appointed Mr. Christy as a voting member and opened the public hearing at 5:05 PM.  The petition seeks a Special Permit to build a 26’ X 26’ garage with an attached 22’ X 6’ storage shed in a location that does not meet the minimum 50-foot setback distance from the lot line.  The structure will be 10 feet from the western-most lot line.  Chuck H. read an email from Ms. Brudnick requesting the application be withdrawn without prejudice.  A motion was made, seconded and passed unanimously to close the hearing at 5:07 PM.  A second motion to accept the request was made and seconded.  With no discussion the motion passed unanimously with five in favor.
DOUG LIMAN APPEAL; Article 9 Section 9.9; Proposed Squibnocket Causeway:             Ms. Weldon recused herself from the hearing as Mr. Liman is a personal friend.  Mr. LoRusso appointed Mr. Christy as a voting member and opened the public hearing at 5:15 PM.  He further explained Mr. Liman is appealing the Building Inspector’s opinion letter dated 8/3/16 relative to the proposed Causeway for Squibnocket Farms, Inc.  Mr. LoRusso then invited Mr. Liman to make a statement on his appeal.  Mr. Liman explained the Building Inspector determined the elevated causeway is not a structure as defined in the Town’s zoning bylaws and therefore does not require a Building Permit.  Mr. Liman also stated he thinks the causeway does not conform to Article 12 Sections 12.2B. and 12.3B.1. of the Squibnocket Pond Zoning District Bylaws.    Mr. Liman added he is alone, did not bring an attorney and thought this could be worked out with the Board of Appeals as he did not want to go to Land Court on this matter.  Mr. LoRusso mentioned the Board has read Mr. Liman’s letter dated August 28, 2016 and invited the Building Inspector Mr. Jason to respond.

Mr. Jason clarified his letter was written as a statement to Mr. Liman’s Causeway appeal to the MA. Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) seeking a Superseding Order of Conditions to replace the unanimous approval and Order of Conditions issued by the Town’s Conservation Commission for the elevated causeway.  Mr. Jason commented that all “bridges” in Chilmark are private except for the Hariph’s Creek bridge on State Road.  He added that in his more than 30 years as the Town’s Building Inspector has never issued a Building Permit for any bridges such as the Hancock bridge, his brother’s bridge (Dennis Jason), the Windy Gates bridge.  He also mentioned that as the Building Inspector for Edgartown he has never issued a Building Permit for a bridge in that town.

Douglas Brayley, attorney for Squibnocket Farm, Inc. presented a letter dated October 14, 2016 that dealt with and substantiated the reasons through case law that Mr. Liman does not have standing to file an appeal to the ZBA on this matter.  He added Mr. Liman has not articulated how he or his property are personally harmed by the elevated causeway.  Mr. Brayley concluded the appeal should be dismissed because Mr. Liman has no standing.

Mr. Brayley presented several charts demonstrating why Mr. Liman has no standing as an aggrieved abutter.  His property is 900 feet from the closest part of the project; 600 feet from the closest lot line of the parcel on which the causeway will be built and is 1,000 feet from the elevated causeway itself.  He reiterated that if Mr. Liman were an aggrieved abutter he would need to demonstrate a private harm caused by the causeway.  He perhaps may have said there is an aesthetic harm which has no relevance.  Mr. Brayley repeated the appeal should be dismissed without merits or standing under Section 8 of the MA. Zoning Act.

Mr. Vickers, a new property owner in Squibnocket Farm but beyond the 300-foot abutter and abutter to abutter radius said the causeway is invasive.  Mr. Liman added this project has created a great deal of divisiveness within the Town for over three years.  Mr. LoRusso explained we are not here to discuss the bridge.  We are here to discuss Mr. Liman’s appeal of the Building Inspector’s letter dated 8/3/16.  Mr. Rossi explained he has worked on the project since its inception in June 2013.  He said the project as permitted has unanimous approval from Town Meeting—for the project design and funding of the Town’s portion of the project; has unanimous approval with no changes from the Martha’s Vineyard Commission; has unanimous approval with no changes from the Town’s Conservation Commission and received two grants from the MA. Division of Coastal Zone Management as a forward-thinking model of managed retreat from rising sea levels.  Mr. Rossi concluded that based upon these facts the project is not at all divisive in the Town.

Mr. LoRusso then referred to a substantiated opinion from Town Counsel dated                 October 24, 2016 that further corroborates Mr. Brayley’s assertion that Mr. Liman has no standing.  Mr. Jason said Mr. Liman does not have the right to challenge the Building Inspector’s letter affidavit dated 8/3/16.  After further discussion and with additional public comment a motion was made to close the hearing at 5:45 PM.  The motion was seconded and unanimously approved.  A subsequent motion was made to dismiss the appeal because the appellant has no standing as a person aggrieved as the term is used in c. 40A.  Accordingly, the Building Inspector’s Opinion is affirmed.  The motion was seconded and approved with four in favor and one opposed            (Mr. Murphy).

REID SILVA FOR CLIFFORD LASSER AND ELIZABETH ADAMS; Article 4        Section 4.2A3; 16 Tilton Road; Map 4 Lot 12:  Mr. LoRusso opened the public hearing at   5:46 PM and confirmed the five regular voting Board members will hear this petition.             Mr. Lasser introduced himself and the Board welcomed him.  Mr. Silva reviewed a site plan dated 9/22/16 and a second plan L1.0 dated 9/22/16 to construct a 17’ X 40’ in-ground swimming pool with the required four-foot high safety enclosure in a location that meets the required minimum setback distance from the lot lines.  The pool will have an air source heat pump system to heat the pool water.  The power used by all pool equipment will be offset by an on-site solar array.  An analysis dated 10/24/16 from TE2 Engineering was reviewed demonstrating the solar array will generate 9526 KWH of power annually and the pool equipment will use 6489 KWH.  The pool equipment will be located in an enclosed vault that will be 7 feet below grade.  He pointed out where the hydrant location will be as approved by the Fire Chief.  Mr. Lasser added the design was approved by the Spring Point Architectural Review Committee.

There was much discussion about the location and safety aspects of the pool enclosure.  The Board commented that the doors and windows facing the pool on the upper and lower levels of the house must be alarmed and there must be a minimum of 4 feet of clearance on the outside of the fence to prohibit climbing.  The pool will have an automatic pool cover which helps.  With no further public comment a motion was made to close the hearing at 6:16 PM.  The motion was seconded and unanimously approved.  A second motion was made to approve the plan as presented with the following special condition:  1. There shall be at least four feet of maintained clearing along the outside perimeter of the pool fence and no climbable trees within four feet of the fence.  The motion was seconded and passed with four in favor and one abstention           (Mr. Murphy).

REID SILVA FOR S. FAIN HACKNEY, TRUSTEE; Article 4 Section 4.2A3; 15 Round Pond Rd.; Map 35 Lot 1.5:  Mr. LoRusso opened the public hearing at 6:20 PM.  Mr. Silva reviewed the site plan dated 9/14/16 and the Donoroma plan dated 9/23/16 to construct an 18’ X 50’ in-ground swimming pool with the required four-foot high safety enclosure in a location that meets the required minimum setback distance from the lot lines.  The pool will have an air source heat pump system to heat the pool water.  The energy needs for all pool equipment will be provided by the Eversource Green Energy program.  The pool equipment will be located in a sound-insulated vault.  The project is in the Squibnocket Pond District.  Mr. Silva added the pool was approved by the Conservation Commission but not the patio and deck as shown.  He further pointed out the area of the building envelope that contained archeological finds and features which further restricted the development of the building envelope.  He said the Planning Board, Squibnocket Farm Association and Conservation Commission approvals are needed for the vault.  The Board discussed the existing dog fence around the perimeter of the yard and whether or not this complies with state building code for pool enclosures.  The Site Review Committee report was read for the record.

With no further comment a motion was made to close the hearing at 6:35 PM.  The motion was seconded and unanimously approved.  A subsequent motion was made to approve the plans as presented with the following special conditions:  1. A dedicated electric meter shall be installed to record the amount of power (KWH) used by all pool equipment including the water handling systems, hot air heat pump and circulator.  2.  The owner shall create a separate account with the Eversource green energy program to purchase the amount of KWH of electricity used by all pool apparatus on an annual basis from this green energy program.  3. Every November the owner shall provide documented proof to the ZBA that the renewable energy needs as described have been purchased.  4.  If the ZBA determines the owner has not complied with these conditions the ZBA shall decide appropriate actions to satisfy the renewable energy needs and source of power.  5.  If at a future date the owner wishes to revise this arrangement, a petition for a new Special Permit for the proposed new pool water heating system must be filed for due processing.  6.  The Fire Chief shall approve the stand pipe location before obtaining a Building Permit.  7.  The Conservation Commission shall approve the patio and deck in the wetland buffer zone and the fence clearing before work begins.  8.  All doors and windows facing the pool shall be equipped with safety alarms.  9.  The pool will have an automatic cover.  10.  The pool enclosure shall be upgraded to meet state building code as needed.  The fence shall have four feet cleared along the outside of the fence to prevent the ability to climb over it.  The motion was seconded and passed with four in favor and one abstention (Mr. Murphy).

DAVID & MARGARET EMERSON; Article 6 Section 6.6; 35 North Rd.; Map 3 Lot 9:  The Board introduced themselves to the Emerson’s after which Mr. LoRusso opened the public hearing at 6:40 PM.  Mr. Sullivan reviewed a site plan dated 9/27/16 to construct a 14’ X 14’ (196 sq. ft.) addition to the existing 14’ X 32’ one story house.  The addition will have a basement foundation and a basement foundation will be installed under the main house.  The addition does not meet the minimum 25-foot setback distance from the west lot line.  The roof ridge height is approximately 15 feet above grade and the project is in the North Road Roadside District.  The Site Review Committee report was read for the record along with the required letters of consent from three direct abutters whose property is within 100 feet of the addition.  A fourth letter from the Dunkl family was also read for the record.  One of the letters of consent and the Dunkl’s letter conditioned approval only if the upgraded septic system is installed before the addition is built.  In discussion it was determined the topography and confines of the lot will require the foundations to be installed before the septic system.  With no further public comment a motion was made and seconded to close the hearing at 6:54 PM.  The motion passed unanimously with five in favor.  A subsequent motion was made to approve the plan as presented with the following conditions:  1. The Board of Health shall approve the septic plan for the house and addition before obtaining a Building Permit.  2. A Certificate of Occupancy shall not be issued and the house not occupied until the new septic system is installed, inspected and connected.  The motion was seconded and passed unanimously with five in favor.
 
EDWARD GRAZDA; Article 6 Section 6.6; 11 Peaked Hill Pasture; Map 20 Lot 47.6:      Mr. LoRusso confirmed the eligible voters as himself; Ms. Weldon and Messrs. Christy, Maloney and Murphy and then opened the continued public hearing at 6:55 PM.  Chuck H. explained the owners could not attend tonight’s hearing and reminded the Board they continued the hearing to give the owners time to obtain a letter of consent from the neighbor within 100 feet of the generator that did not have any conditions for the approval.  He proceeded to read an email from Fred Khedouri dated 10/25/16 stating his unconditional approval of the generator’s location.  With no public comment a motion was made and seconded to close the hearing at    6:59 PM.  The motion passed unanimously.  A second motion was made to approve the site plan dated 9/28/16 as presented.  The motion was seconded and with no further discussion passed unanimously with five in favor.

ADMINISTRATION:  The September 28, 2016 meeting minutes were reviewed and approved as amended by consensus.

With no further business to conduct the meeting adjourned at 7:00 PM.

Due to holiday conflicts the next two meetings will be November 16 and                         December 14, 2016 @ 5:00 PM.  Respectfully submitted by Chuck Hodgkinson, CAS.


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