The regularly scheduled meeting of the Raynham Planning Board was held on Thursday, August 2, 2012, at the Raynham Veterans’ Memorial Town Hall. The meeting was called to order at 6:11 p.m. by Chairman Daniel Andrade.
Board members present: Daniel Andrade, Burke Fountain, Christopher Gallagher, Russell Driscoll
Board members not present: Henry Ellis
Staff Present: Marilyn Whalley, Director of Planning and Community Development; Maureen McKenney, Administrative Assistant
6:11 p.m. – Richard Mastria was not present. The matter was tabled to future meeting.
6:12 p.m. – Bassett Knoll Estates – Developer Nick Harras appeared before the Board to discuss the subdivision plan. He submitted copy of an April 28, 2005 conceptual/preliminary plan for Bassett Knoll Estates. The plan had an updated wetland line. Mr. Gallagher discussed that not all the lots met the upland requirement.
Donald Shute, the property owner, was present and explained that a preliminary open space plan for Bassett Knoll had been prepared in 2008 but was never submitted for public hearing. It was noted a definitive plan was not submitted with the seven-month time limit so the plan may not be current now.
After discussion, the Board advised Mr. Harras that before an open-space plan submission can be considered, an updated plan is needed with enough information to show how many actual conventional subdivision lots can be built on the property. Mr. Harras and Mr. Shute were agreeable to that. Mr. Gallagher requested that the drainage areas be considered when producing the updated conventional plan.
No action was taken on Bassett Knoll Estates, and the matter was continued to August 16, 2012.
6:28 p.m. – Form A – Broadway/Elm Street West: Eric Dias, P.E., Tunison Dias, Inc., presented a plan to create two lots for property owned by Barnes on Broadway/Elm Street West. Proper form and application fee were submitted. Wetlands were shown on the plan.
Mr. Andrade stated that at the July 19th Planning Board meeting the Board voted to deny this plan as it was not known at the time if it had been filed with the Town Clerk’s office. Mr. Andrade moved to rescind the denial; second by Mr. Fountain; motion passed by unanimous vote.
After review of the plan, Mr. Dias agreed to add a notation to the plan stating an existing dwelling on the property will be razed. The wording was added to the mylar and paper copies of the plan.
Mr. Gallagher moved to approve the Form A entitled “Plan of Land In Raynham, Massachusetts Prepared For Charles F. Barnes,” prepared by Pilling Engineering Corp., last revised date July 26, 2012; second by Mr. Driscoll; motion passed by unanimous vote. The plan was signed.
6:37 p.m. – Raynham Sewer Commission Form A plans: Attorney Richard Bentley appeared before the Board and presented three Form A plans on behalf of the Raynham Sewer Commission. Mr. Gallagher, Raynham Sewer Superintendent, left the meeting room.
Church Street plan: After review, Mr. Andrade moved to approve the Form A plan entitled “Plan Of Property Taking To Be Acquired For Proposed North Church Street Pump Station Town of Raynham, Massachusetts (Bristol County),” prepared by Reed Land Surveying, Inc., Lakeville, MA, dated March 30, 2012; second by Mr. Fountain; motion passed on vote of 3 – 0.
Locust Street plan: Mr. Fountain noted the MLC indicated there are $33 in outstanding taxes on this property. After review, Mr. Andrade moved to approve the Form A plan entitled “Plan Of Property Taking To Be Acquired For Proposed Locust Street Pump Station Town of Raynham, Massachusetts (Bristol County),” prepared by Reed Land Surveying, Inc., Lakeville, MA, dated April 15, 2012; second by Mr. Fountain. Mr. Fountain advised Mr. Gallagher that the taxes must be paid. Mr. Fountain moved to amend the motion by adding that the $33 in outstanding taxes must be paid; amended motion seconded by Mr. Andrade; passed by vote of 3 – 0. Mr. Gallagher did not vote.
Dean Street plan: After review, Mr. Andrade moved to approve the Form A plan entitled “Plan Of Property Taking to Be Acquired For Proposed Dean Street Pump Street Town of Raynham, Massachusetts (Bristol County),” prepared by Reed Land Surveying, Inc., dated March 30, 2012; second by Mr. Fountain; motion passed on 3 – 0. Mr. Gallagher did not vote.
6:37 p.m. – Raynham Flea Market: Greg Dutra, Munro Distributors, and Lyndon Campos appeared before the Board on behalf of Raynham Flea Market (Judson Street) requesting approval to proceed with an abbreviated site plan process for a proposed plan for a carport with solar panels at the site. Detail sheets and a sketch of the proposed structure were submitted. Mr. Dutra explained that the business does not want to lose parking spaces so the car port will accommodate parking while the solar panels on top of the carport will supply electricity for the existing building.
The Board and Mr. Dutra discussed the solar panels and how they will be installed. During discussion, it was noted each solar panel weighs 42 pounds and the structure will be installed during the week when the flea market is not open for business. The trench that will be installed from the carport to the building was discussed. It was noted the building inspector will be inspecting the trench during construction.
After discussion, Mr. Andrade moved to allow the Raynham Flea Market carport with solar panels site plan to be submitted as an abbreviated site plan; second by Mr. Gallagher; motion passed by unanimous vote (4). Mr. Andrade advised the applicant to make sure the site plan details the underground trench and the time frame for digging, inspection and repaving.
7:02 p.m. – Berry Hill ARC – Attorney Vince Cragin, New Bedford, MA, appeared before the Board to discuss the status of Berry Hill. A letter dated July 25, 2012 was received from Harris Beach, Attorneys At Law, Pittsford, NY, to Marilyn Whalley, Director of Planning and Community Development, regarding the insurance company’s denial of the Town’s claim for the Berry Hill bond. Attorney Cragin asked if the Board could defer any possible action tonight on the matter until trustees involved in the project could be present. Mr. Andrade noted there would be no action taken tonight.
Mr. Andrade talked about the history of the Berry Hill project, noting the Board had believed it would be good for the town. He also noted it was intended as a private project and was not to be turned over to the Town and the Town does not plow or otherwise care for the site now. Mr. Gallagher stated that for the record he was against the project. Mr. Andrade noted Mr. Gallagher’s brother worked on the project and asked if anyone present had issue with Mr. Gallagher participating tonight. No one responded.
Mr. Andrade noted the Board treated this project as other subdivision plans and a bond was taken against completing the work, and the Town would have transferred the bond funds to the Berry Hill owners if the funds were received. He said the Planning Board will not support the roads being accepted by the Town.
Mr. Fountain stated this subdivision is not typical in that it is private property and will not become town owned. He suggested the property owners and the bank act together to fight against the insurance company’s denial of the bond claim. Mr. Andrade agreed, noting the Town will not actively pursue the claim on the bond. Mr. Gallagher questioned if the Board can rescind the lot releases at Berry Hill.
Several homeowners at Berry Hill were present. Homeowner Bill LaCivita questioned if rescinding the lot releases would be harmful to the project. Mr. Gallagher stated the Board’s goal is to get the project completed, and he questioned whether or not the information in the attorney’s letter was true.
Homeowner Jane Thetonia asked what would happen to the project if the bank does not remain involved. Mr. Andrade noted the bank will gain by selling the lots and completing the project.
Mr. Fountain noted he has seen other similar situations where homeowners’ associations have finished projects. He suggested the bank and the homeowners work together to collect the bond. He noted the legal case cited in the attorney’s letter may be different than this situation. During discussion, it was noted the Town is listed as the obligee on the bond. Ms. Whalley noted the Town has expended resources on this matter over the past 17 months. She discussed the issue of timelines that was raised in the attorney’s letter, noting the Board had been working to a point with the developer and that the insurance company indicated the bonds did not expire.
After discussion, the Board agreed they want the roads finished but the bank and homeowners need a plan and direction to move forward. Mr. Andrade stated he would represent the Board if the bank and homeowners meet in the future. It was also agreed that the attorneys letter regarding denial of the bond should be responded to, and the Board will provide any information they can.
General Business: Mr. Fountain moved to waive the reading and approve the minutes as received: second by Mr. Driscoll; motion passed by unanimous vote (4).
Town Planner update: Ms. Whalley discussed Aspen Hollow subdivision. She informed the Board that at Mr. Perron’s request Nitsch Engineering will conduct a site inspection next week. Mr. Gallagher noted the sewer issues at the site have been done to his satisfaction. After discussion, it was agreed that Ms. Whalley will notify the Board members when Nitsch will be at the site so they can be present if they want. Ms. Whalley mentioned that the matter of the mailboxes at Aspen Hollow needs to be addressed and the street trees are also an issue.
Mr. Gallagher discussed that construction of the veterans’ memorial has begun. He thanked several local businesses who contributed to the work. He noted memorial bricks are still available for purchase.
There was no further business and the meeting adjourned at approximately 8 p.m.
Christopher J. Gallagher, Clerk