Municipal Bldg 520 West Hill Road Glen Gardner, N.J.
The 791st Regular Meeting of the Lebanon Township Planning Board was called to order at by Chairman Gary MacQueen. Present were: Mr. Weeks, Mr. Schmidt, Mr. Rich, Ms. Bleck, Ms. Schriver, 1st Alternate Weiler, Attorney Gallina, Planner Bolan and Engineer Risse. Mr. Spatz arrived at
Notice of this meeting was
provided for in the “Annual Meeting Notice Schedule” adopted by this board on
PRESENTATION OF MINUTES:
Mr. Rich referred to Page 3
under Open to the Public, the paragraph regarding the
Motion by Ms. Schriver and seconded by Ms. Bleck to approve the Executive Session Minutes as presented. Unanimously approved.
a. Darin McDowell Block #73 Lots #53/54
Motion by Ms. Schriver and seconded by Mr. Spatz to approve the Resolution for a Lot Line Adjustment with conditions as presented.
ROLL CALL Yes: Mr. Weeks Ms. Bleck Absent : Mr. Piasecki
Mr. Schmidt Mr. Spatz Mr. Gerlich
Mr. Rich Ms. Schriver
Mr. MacQueen Mr. Weiler
FYI: NJDEP Highlands – Update
Training Course offered –
Ms. Glashoff asked if anyone
on the board would be attending the Training Course at the
ORDINANCE BACK FROM TOWNSHIP COMMITTEE FOR COMMENT:
a. Fee Schedule Amendment – Introduced on October 4th with Public Hearing Scheduled for November 1st.
After a brief discussion, motion by Ms. Bleck and seconded by Mr. Rich to send the Ordinance Amendment back to the Township Committee for adoption on November 1st. Unanimously approved.
UPDATE ON SITE WORK FOR MOHAWK OIL & EXTENSION OF TIME ON FINAL SITE PLAN APPROVAL:
Mohawk Oil Block
Mr. Salisbury was present this evening to discuss the site work and the Extension of Time. Mr. Salisbury stated that they had planned to be in construction of the Underground Fire Tank this month until they encountered some obstacles at Sprint and this has now been addressed. They have an amendment to the utility pole location of the curb line presently pending before the County Planning Board. The curb line adjustment should be approved this month and then they will be moving the pole to a location that will be a lot easier to work with then the prior location. At that point they will then commence with the underground storage tank work. Once that is completed the site will be completely graded, ruff paved and drainage will be in place. Depending on equipment delivery, weather, not encountering anymore unforeseen slow ups like the utility problem, they hope to have everything done except the store by the beginning of next year 2007. They received all their permits for construction in 2004 and would be done now except for problems like war, gasoline prices tripling which slow down small businesses.
Mr. Salisbury also asked for
the board to grant the extension of time they are requesting through
Engineer Risse asked when the County Planning Board would hear their application. Mr. Salisbury thought October 26th, but that he was told by the Director that it might not even need to go before the whole Planning Board, that Tom Mathews the engineer might be able to handle it as a field modification. Chairman MacQueen questioned the extension to December 17th. Attorney Gallina informed the board that just because the extension will run out doesn’t mean the approval will expire. The only problem for the applicant would be if after December 17th any ordinances changed that would affect this property then the applicant would have to comply with any new ordinances.
Ms. Glashoff informed Mr.
Salisbury that Engineer Risse will be putting together a letter outlining the
fees for inspections and then monies will need to be posted. Chairman MacQueen asked if the board had any
questions of the applicant on the project and the extension of time on the
Final Site Plan Approval. Ms. Schriver
stated that we need to give the applicant our support. Chairman MacQueen asked for a motion at this
time. Motion by Ms. Schriver and
seconded by Ms. Bleck to grant the Extension of Time on Final Site Plan
ROLL CALL Yes: Mr. Weeks Ms. Bleck Absent: Mr. Piasecki
Mr. Schmidt Mr. Spatz Mr. Gerlich
Mr. Rich Ms. Schriver
Mr. MacQueen Mr. Weiler
Attorney Gallina will draft a Resolution to be placed on the next Planning Board Agenda.
ITEMS FOR DISCUSSION:
a. Update on Grant Monies from
Ms. Glashoff informed the board that the grant we applied for had been approved and we have now received the first of two payments. The total amount spent was $7,800.00 and the grant money we are receiving is $7,500.00 so it only cost us $300.00 for all the work that was done on the Stormwater Ordinance. The money will be posted to the board’s budget of 2006. Ms. Glashoff will let the board know once the balance is received.
Planner Bolan stated that the
committee hasn’t met but he has a map of the Piazza property which he passed
out to the board for review. The Piazza
property is located on
Chairman MacQueen asked Ms. Glashoff to get the block and lot information for the Sliker and Diamond properties for Planner Bolan. Ms. Glashoff said that they last time Gen Sliker was in, they would be interested if something could be worked out.
c. Request to amend the Conditional Use Section of Ordinance – Planner Bolan
Planner Bolan stated the Conditional Use Section of the Ordinance refers to the camps, private recreational facilities and private country clubs. The board received a memo from the Township Committee on June 9th with the attached letter from the residents. The board then discussed the letter on August 15th concerning camps, private recreational facilities and private country clubs. Planner Bolan stated the board decided to have him draft an ordinance amendment for the board to look at based on the comments that were received by the residents. In the ordinance under Section 18-2.2 Definitions, Planner Bolan amended the definition section to delete the private recreational facilities within the Table which list all the uses whether they are permitted or conditional uses, then Section 18-3.5a1 and delete the reference to private camps, country
clubs and private recreational facilities and replace it with camps. The next amendment #3 is the actual conditional use standards, Section 18-3.7b2. Number #2 is the conditional use standards for camps.
The first 5 conditions (a,b,c,d,e) are already in the ordinance and the second two are the conditions being added. The lot shall have access from a public road and second that the lot should consists of 75 acres. Chairman MacQueen asked if the board had any questions. Mr. Schmidt had a few questions. Without these changes and the property owner wants to make a recreational facility, what would be there course of action. Attorney Gallina stated that we have a Conditional Use with Site Plan Ordinance and the owner would need to file an application. If the applicant could not meet the standards of the ordinance, they would then go to the Board of Adjustment. Mr. Schmidt asked what would happen if the board passed these amendments would the applicant then have to go to the Board of Adjustment. Attorney Gallina said yes they would go to the Zoning Board. Mr. Schmidt said it concerned him that even though it is not illegal to do these amendments, he felt it was questionably ethical to do it. These residents have asked the Planning Board to change the ordinance that would directly benefit them to get what they want.
Chairman MacQueen asked Planner Bolan for his comments regarding the amendments to the ordinance. Planner Bolan stated when the board does a Reexamination Report and identifies changes that we should make in the ordinance which we will be doing next year. The last time we did a reexamination was in 2001. We have made changes in the ordinances that have been brought to our attention by individuals. Making these changes will not only benefit one group. If the board does not think that private recreational facilities and private country clubs are a legitimate conditional use and in going through the definitions, found that private country clubs are not even defined in the ordinance. You don’t make the change based on one circumstance, but that the change makes sense. Planner Bolan felt that having access on a public road certainly makes a lot of sense. Mr. Weeks interjected stating there is no way you could put a country club down on that road because the road could not handle the traffic that would be generated. Ms. Schriver stated we are here to listen to the concerns of the residents and we were not aware of this situation and if they can’t bring their concerns to us what are we here for. The owner of the property would have to purchase land from the other land owners because the road is narrow and barely passable. It is not accessible to emergency vehicles and someone didn’t do their homework when the purchased the property.
Mr. Schmidt said he has not
heard the other side of the story but these are all very good points and
assuming the letter from the residents has all the correct info. He went through the criteria for a
conditional use and stated that if an applicant can not meet criteria the
applicant would go to the Board of Adjustment for relief. Mr. Schmidt did not feel we need to change
the ordinance in order to deny an applicants application. Mr.
Weeks noted the safety factor for that road alone would be cause to deny. Mr. Schmidt stated that
Ms. Bleck felt that the amendment for fronting on a public road made a lot of sense. We found a problem/loophole and we need to deal with it. Ms. Bleck said this is a serious issue and was glad it was brought to the board’s attention. Mr. Rich stated that regardless of how something comes to the board, its a worthy question and we should take a look at the request. Mr. Rich felt that the amendment (f)presented by Planner Bolan was an excellent idea. Mr. Rich said he does have a problem with eliminating other uses as golf and hunting clubs. We shouldn’t be so exclusive and item (g) regarding the 75 acres. Mr. Rich did not think putting a number for acreage was a good idea because it would depend on the use that was presented. A proposed use that was good could work on 20 acres and if something is bad it won’t work anyway. Mr. Rich suggested adding (f) and eliminating (g) and keep all other uses as a possibility which will be subject to review by this board. Chairman MacQueen agreed with Mr. Rich and said having access on a public road is a must. Mr. Rich suggested having Planner Bolan tightened up (e) which could make it better like type of use, safety factors and disturbance to neighborhood. Planner Bolan noted these items are already asked for. Mr. Rich said that safety is not addressed and would be a must which is a concern. Mr. Schmidt agreed with having these uses on a public road.
Planner Bolan questioned the standards in the A Section of the Conditional Use substantially impaired, Section 18-3.7a, and are those legitimate to apply to something otherwise meets the Conditions of the Conditional Use. Attorney Gallina stated the language is very broad and considered vague. During the discussion, Planner Bolan stated that he does not like item (e) where we have a discretionary lot size. Planner Bolan felt we should have a lot size. The ordinance states: “shall be sufficient”. When a judge looks at a Conditional Use ordinance with that type of standard he will just take that standard out. We need to have a minimum lot size. Mr. Rich recommended 25 acres as a minimum. The ordinance states that no building shall be located within 100’ of a property line, but that the use itself should be so many feet from the property line. Mr. Rich stated that adequate parking, egress and ingress off the road was important. Everyone on the board agreed that (f) public road access was a must.
Chairman MacQueen asked the residents that that presented the request had any comments they wish to make at this time. The following residents made comments: Andy Kozlowski stated that parking needs to
be addressed and that having parking at least 100’ off
the property line was important. Planner
Bolan agreed. Comments were also made by
Jack DeChristofaro and Ken Wlazlo. At
the conclusion of the board’s discussion, Planner Bolan will revise and make
adjusts in the ordinance that needs to be amended and have it ready for the
next board meeting on
d. Tree Ordinance – Planner Bolan
Chairman MacQueen asked Warren Newman, Chair of the Environmental Commission to explain to the board the amendments to the Tree Ordinance they are proposing.
Mr. Newman stated they had a
sub-committee that worked on the Tree Ordinance. Sean Kelly a member of the Commission did
most of the work on the ordinance. The
sub-committee looked at several other Tree Ordinance
from neighboring municipalities. Mr.
Newman asked if he should go though this ordinance item by item. Chairman MacQueen said yes and asked who has
an ordinance like this one. Mr. Newman
said they looked at
When opened to the public,
Mr. Terzuolo gave his comments. He
referred to the section of the proposed ordinance on Steep Slopes. He suggested amending and enhancing the Steep
Slope Ordinance. Mr. Terzuolo stated
that if he is not mistaken, Stream Corridors and Buffers fall under the NJDEP
jurisdiction. You don’t have to create
another law on top of a law when it already exists. We now have the
Ms. Bleck noted that the
Environmental Commission heard the Planning Board at least 2 years ago
complaining over erosion on
e. Fence Ordinance – Planner Bolan
f. Monuments & Pillars on Residential Properties – Planner Bolan
Planner Bolan suggested tabling these two items and address then at the next Planning Board Meeting since two board members were not present this evening. Board agreed.
g. Update on COAH Letter Items – Planner Bolan
Planner Bolan stated that we responded to all the items in the letter and sent it in to COAH on October 6th with the deadline of October 8th. The Township Attorney coordinated everything. We had 90 days to address the 16 items that were listed in the letter. Planner Bolan said that he addressed 8-9 items, Gail & Karen addressed 4 items and Attorney Bernstein took care of the balance. We now wait and see if COAH is satisfied.
h. Memo from
Zoning Officer re:
Chairman MacQueen asked Engineer Risse to address the memo from the Zoning Officer. Engineer Risse informed the board that he and Mr. Skene did a site walk and everything looked like it was conforming to the most recent Site Plan.
i. Memo from Executive Director Eileen Swan re: Update on proposed changes to the Preliminary
State Plan & Scheduled Cross-Acceptance
Planner Bolan said that the
whole process was stopped for 1½ years for various reasons given, the pertinent
one the DEP wanted to have the aerial photography and land use land cover
mapping from 2002 and of course there was the change in Governors. And now per Planner Bolan we have these
changes that are referred to in the letter along with the companion letter from
the Hunterdon County Freeholders. We had
all those meetings where representatives from each municipality spent time
looking at all the maps and affirmed our planning areas and met the criteria.
j. Review Schedule of Fees – Ms. Glashoff
Ms. Glashoff stated that we just amended the Schedule of Fees, but in reviewing all the Escrow fees found that some of these fees need to be increased and pointed out which ones and why they needed to be increase.. Planner Bolan agreed with the Conditional Use Escrow Fee. Ms. Glashoff said she would like the board to look over all the Escrow Fees and she will place this item back on the November 7th agenda.
k. Review road Standards for Class III Common Driveways – Engineer Risse
Engineer Risse stated that
there are some issues where there are steeper Class III Common Driveways. Gravel driveways on slopes have a tendency to
erode and wash out and maybe we should look into possibly having them paved
over a certain percent of slope with asphalt.
There are problems popping up.
The road that has had a problem is off of
PRESENTATION OF BILLS & REPORT:
a. John Gallina, Esq. $3,418.59
b. Banisch Associates $1,263.80
Ms. Glashoff referred to the amended Bill Report with the additional bills from Bayer/Risse Engineers that total $252.50 bringing the new balance to $5,064.89. Motion by Mr. Spatz and seconded by Ms. Bleck to approve the bills as amended. Unanimously approved.
Ms. Glashoff informed the board that at the September 20th Township Committee Meeting she was appointed the Municipal Housing Liaison for COAH. Because of new regulations with COAH each municipality has to appoint a liaison.
Ms. Schriver informed the board the Township Committee will have a guest at their meeting tomorrow evening who is our Assemblywoman Marsha Karrow and invited the board to attend.
Being no further business to come before the board nor comments from the public, motion by Ms. Bleck and seconded by Mr. Rich to adjourn the meeting at Unanimously approved.
CHAIRMAN GARY MACQUEEN
GAIL W. GLASHOFF, PLANNING BOARD CLERK