Planning Commission Agenda and Minutes

Date:  Monday February 26, 2018 (02/26/18)

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Planning Commission Agenda
Martin Memorial Hall – 5259 Route 5, Ascutney, Vermont 05030
Monday, 26 February 2018 - 7 PM


1. Call to Order
2. Agenda Review
3. Introductions
4. Approval of Meeting Minutes – 12 February 2018
5. Executive Session
    as per 1 VSA 313.(3) - Land Use Administrator Discussion and Evaluation
6 Review of Changes to Town Plan Chapter 3 – Transportation
7. Review of minor changes to other Town Plan Chapters
8. Zoning Bylaw Sections - Final Review. a. Accessory Dwelling Units
    b. Fragmentation / Subdivision of Agricultural Lands
    c. Small-Scale and Large-Scale Renewable Energy Systems
9. Land Use Administrator Notes

10. Adjourn

Monday, February 26, 2018

I. Call to Order
Chair, Julie Schmitz called the meeting to order at 6:50pm.

V. Executive Session - as per 1 VSA 313.(3) - Land Use Administrator Discussion and Evaluation
A Motion was made by Michael Todd to go into Executive Session at 6:53pm, seconded by Nancy Heatley. Voted unanimously.
Planning Commission came out of Executive Session at 7:25pm
III. Introductions: Nancy Heatley, Julie Schmitz, Chair); Paul Tillman, Michael Todd, Hal Wilkins, (Land Use Administrator); Julia Lloyd Wright, (Energy Coordinator, ex-officio)
Visitors: Ed Morris, (Town Manager); Howard Beach (Conservation Commission)
Jordana Jusidman, Allen Tate, groSolar; Diane Hodgdon, Dusty Hodgdon, groSolar project.

II. Agenda Review
Chair Julie Schmitz recognized the groSolar project group (not on the agenda)
Jordana Jusidman said the group would like to speak informally and clarify the new requirement for the proposed solar array on the Route 5 Hodgdon, Inc. property in Ascutney. Changes have been made to the former proposed solar site. Previous plans for the area called for Green Mountain Power to operate a 5MGW array. This was determined to be too large for the grid and the project has now been scaled back to 500KW. Allen Tate requested that a draft letter from the Planning Commission be written stating that this new scaled-down site is the preferred site for new net metering, that the Planning Commission have looked at the site and it qualifies. A copy of the letter needs to be filed with the Certificate of Public Good by April 23, 2018 confirming the preferred or designated site.
A visit to the site and a subsequent letter will be drafted for signature at the next Planing Commission Meeting on Monday, March 12, 2018.

IV. Approval of Meeting Minutes - 12 February, 2018
A motion was made by Paul Tillman to approve the Minutes of February 12, 2018, seconded by Nancy Heatley. Voted: Unanimously.

VI. Review of Changes to Town Plan Chapter 3 - Transportation
The chapter was reviewed for minor changes. On Page 3 the missing figures received from the Police Chief recording the number of crashes on Weathersfield highways is now included in the graph. Traffic volume was discussed and recommendations for road repair and upgrade priorities. Hal Wilkins will contact Highway Crew Chief Westley Hazeltine for a new list of future road repairs. These will be added to the chapter.
Recommendations will be on the agenda for discussion at the next meeting, March 12, 2018.

VII. Review of minor changes to other Town Plan Chapters
These will be on the agenda for the next meeting

There was a discussion on handling and identifying edited documents so that each commissioner has the latest updated revisions available at each meeting (in electronic or hard copy form).

VIII. Zoning Bylaw Sections - Final Review
a. Accessory Dwelling Units
Under 4.11 Definitions. Notes were removed and the definition of “appurtenant” corrected to read: “...attached or detached Accessory Dwelling...”

b. Fragmentation/Subdivision of Agricultural Lands
There was a discussion on agricultural soils. The bylaws should be written to evaluate the status for the protection of the soil.

c. Ground-mounted Renewable Energy Systems
Under “generally” was removed and “greater than 15KW” added.
More information is still needed for these bylaws.

IX. Land Use Administrator Notes
Howard Beach, a current member of the Conservation Commission, is interested in filling one of the two vacant seats on the Planning Commission and dropped off a copy of his resume.
In order to receive the Village
Center Designation for Perkinsville and Ascutney a map of the confirmed boundaries is required. Hal Wilkins will check to see if these already exist.
Chair Julie Schmitz stepped down from the Planning Commission as of February 26, 2018. Her future recommendations included a focus on fixing the process for the completion of the Zoning bylaws.

X. Adjourn
A motion to adjourn at 9pm was made by Paul Tillman, seconded by Nancy Heatley. Voted: Unanimously.

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