I Call to Order
Chairman Paul White called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.
Present: Chuck Archer, Phil Lowe, Joe McMahon, Dick Perry, Tina Vanasse, Paul White, Code Enforcement Officer Mike Collins, Recorder Maureen Scanlon.
Absent: Donna Cook
Guests present: Town Manager Jim Smith, Carrie Walia from Loon Echo Land Trust.
The following correspondences were distributed to the Planning Board members at the meeting;
1. A copy of the updated Planning Board Membership Contact List.
2. A copy of the Planning Board Meeting Dates for 2012.
3. A copy of the e-mail message from the town’s attorney Amy Tchao to Town Manager Jim Smith regarding an opinion on the authority or jurisdiction of the Planning Board as requested.
4. Maureen Scanlon reported that the amended subdivision plan for Sebago Ridge Estates has been recorded at the Registry of Deeds and is now filed at the Town Office.
Copies of these correspondences are attached to and do hereby become a part of the original set of these minutes.
III Open to Public Questions
Town Manager Jim Smith asked to speak to the Board regarding the opinion that he received from the town’s attorney Amy Tchao in reference to their authority or jurisdiction. He asked for this from the attorney in response to the ongoing issue that Mr. & Mrs. Jansz have had regarding their request for the Planning Board to dissolve the easement on their property.
According to Attorney Tchao’s opinion the Planning Board, unlike the Board of Selectmen, is generally not empowered to remedy grievances of a general nature that are unrelated to their review and approval function for a variety of permit applications. Under the Jansz’s circumstances, she does not believe the Planning Board has a live case or controversy before them that falls within the Board’s authority to remedy. There does not appear to be a pending permit application or approval sought within the jurisdiction of the Planning Board regarding this particular lot or subdivision. Jim explained that this opinion appears to concur with the Planning Board Chairman’s assessment of the situation as being beyond their scope of authority. Jim has advised Mr. & Mrs. Jansz that at
this point, their option is to bring this matter before the Board of Selectmen and not the Planning Board.
A copy of this correspondence is included in the Planning Board file for the Jansz property.
IV Review of Minutes (October 11, 2011 – No Meeting held in November)
Phil Lowe made a motion to accept the October 11, 2011 meeting minutes as presented. It was seconded by Chuck Archer. Motion carried with all in favor except for Paul White who abstained from the vote.
V Old Business
a. Concept of Reviewing Ordinances Discussion
The Board welcomed Mike Collins as the new Code Enforcement Officer. There was some general discussion between the Planning Board members and the Code Enforcement Officer about the ordinance review process and potential improvements that can be made on an ongoing basis for any necessary “fine tuning”. Paul White mentioned that it was previously noted that some corrections regarding setbacks need to be made in the Land Use Ordinance. Any changes made to the existing ordinances will need to be adopted at the Annual Town Meeting. The Board agreed to address this matter further at a future meeting once Mike Collins has been “on board” as the Code Enforcement Officer for a little longer.
VI New Business
a. Lake Region Greenprint Presentation – Carrie Walia, Executive Director of Loon Echo Land Trust
Carrie explained that Loon Echo Land Trust is a regional land conservation organization that has been around for approximately twenty-five years. Two years ago their Board of Directors realized that they did not really have a strong vision and understanding of what land in our landscape deserves protection. This needs to be developed because there is only a limited amount of funding and resources available to protect lands. Working with bordering towns, they have been developing a program called the Greenprint Project which is geared to protecting the resources in the Lakes Region. This project allows them to work with the local communities in the planning, developing and protection of our open lands. Carrie distributed maps that have been created as a tool to show identified areas that have
been targeted as areas that should possibly be protected lands. She explained why these maps were developed and how to read the information that they provide. Loon Echo Trust will help towns to establish and promote conservation and may even offer methods of financing to obtain open lands. Carrie invited the Planning Board members to become familiar with the program and to consider participating in the project. She stated that she would be available to come back to do some training on helping the Town of Sebago to identify areas that should be protected in this area. There was some discussion between Carrie and the Board regarding this project.
The Board invited Carrie to attend their meeting in March 2012, to give her more detailed presentation on how to go about developing this program in Sebago.
b. Instructions to the Town Clerk by the Planning Board
(Remove former “Site Plan Review Ordinance” from the town’s website. Due to redundancy; the new Land Use Ordinance which was adopted on May 25, 2010 supersedes this ordinance.)
Maureen Scanlon reported that the Site Plan Review Ordinance was never removed from the town’s website when the new Land Use Ordinance was adopted on May 25, 2010. The Town Clerk, Michele Bukoveckas has asked for direction from the Planning Board as to whether or not to remove this ordinance if it is now incorporated in the Land Use Ordinance. The Planning Board confirmed that it was indeed incorporated into the Land Use Ordinance; however, they asked that it be left on the website with the notation that anyone reviewing this information should refer to the Land Use Ordinance for Site Plan Review instructions and requirements.
c. Code Enforcement Items – Michael Collins, Code Enforcement Officer
1. Wood Stove Permitting & Inspections
Mike Collins explained that he has received a few calls asking him to inspect recently installed wood or pellet stoves inside of a residential structure. Currently a permit is not required to install one of these types of stoves, but some insurance providers are asking for confirmation of proper installation. Basically, he is providing information on the State’s requirements for proper installation as a courtesy to residents. However, he is not “signing off” on it as the town’s Code Enforcement Officer because he did not do (or witness) the actual installation process. The installer is responsible for “signing off” on any required insurance forms. It was noted that the Fire Department is not performing these inspections for fear of liability. The Board
asked Mike to check with the town’s attorney to assure that this does not put the town in a position of liability even though he is not actually granting a permit for the installation and is only providing guidance in the proper procedures. Mike will report back to the Board with his findings on the matter.
2. International Residential Building Code
Mike explained that the town is currently using the 2003 version of the International Residential Code (IRC) which consists of the Building Code requirements. He was recently informed at a training session that the 2009 version of the IRC is now the default version and needs to be adopted by the town according to the State Statutes. Paul White stated that this will need to be adopted by the town at the Annual Town Meeting. Once adopted, copies of the 2009 version of the IRC will be distributed to the Planning Board members as a reference tool.
3. Miscellaneous Item – Zoning Board of Appeals Public Hearing on December 28, 2011 – Maureen Scanlon
Maureen Scanlon invited the Planning Board to attend the Zoning Board of Appeals Public Hearing on Wednesday, December 28, 2011 at 6:30 p.m. that was requested by John Swanson (Property owned by K&J Realty Trust, John Blount Trustee) for the proposed RV Park Project that was recently denied by the Planning Board.
Phil Lowe made a motion to adjourn at 8:05 p.m. It was seconded by Chuck Archer. Motion carried with all in favor.
Maureen F. Scanlon
Administrative Assistant/Deputy Clerk