***** UNAPPROVED MINUTES *****

 

PLANNING COMMISSION MINUTES

September 15, 2004

7:30 PM

 Jamestown Library

            26 North Main Rd.

           

            The meeting was called to order at 7:33 p.m. and the following members were present:

            Gary Girard                              Victor Calabretta

            Betty Hubbard                          Jean Brown

            William Kelly                            Barry Holland

           

            Not present:

            Andrew Kallfelz

           

            Also present:

            Lisa Bryer, AICP – Town Planner

            Cinthia Reppe – Recording Clerk

            Mike Gray – Town Engineer

            John Lawless – Engineer, Whale Rock Engineering, LLC

            Ken Gladding

            Kristin Delyi

            Melanie Jewitt – Barbara Sokoloff and Associates

            Brigid Ryan – Church Community Housing

            Bruce Bartlett – Church Community Housing

           

I.          Approval of Minutes from August 18,2004

A motion was made by Commissioner Calabretta and seconded by Commissioner Kelly .to accept the minutes as written.  So unanimously voted.  Commissioner Holland Abstains.

 

     Approval of Minutes from September 1,2004

A motion was made by Commissioner Calabretta and seconded by Commissioner Kelly to accept the minutes with the following changes:

Page 4., New Business 1, last sentence in the first paragraph: add A simple ordinance can help

boards get better development.  The abutters should be included in any walk too. 

So unanimously voted.

 

II.         Correspondence

1.         Rhode Island Rural Development Council – Invitation to RI Rural Forum. Received

 

III.       Citizen’s Non Agenda Item – nothing at this time

 

IV.       Reports

1.         Town Planner’s Report

2.         Town Committees

a.         Harbor

Commissioner Girard read a memo from Commissioner Kallfelz regarding the last meeting that stated:

Commission is in receipt of Planners letter and comments regarding the proposed boat rack at East Ferry.  The topic of the boat rack will be placed on the agenda for the next HC meeting.  The HC is generally in agreement with the planners comments regarding location of the rack.  

 

The HC discussed at length the need to comply with Dept. of Interior requirements regarding the balance of use on the wood pile pier.  The is discussion is continuing and the direction seems to be that the HC will propose some additional dock facility at East Ferry (and likely attached to the wood pile pier) that would be dedicated for recreational boating.   The other topics at the meeting were not particularly relevant to planning.  

 

The memo also mentioned that Commissioner Kallfelz would like to nominate Commissioner Hubbard to be a member of a subcommittee to work on the Affordable Housing Plan.

 

b.         Fort Getty

Survey results have been tallied and a preliminary report will be given at tomorrows meeting.

c.         Buildings and Facilities

d.         Others

3.         Sub Committees

 

V.        New Business

1.    Single Family Home of Krista N. Delyi – Development Plan Review in RR 200

       District – Severance Lane – Plat 5, Lot 485

 

Engineer John Lawless a registered professional engineer representing Krista Delyi.  Gave a brief report on this application.  The property is 29,000 sq. feet with plans for a single family home to be constructed on the property.  The property is relatively flat and no wetlands are in the vicinity of the site.   They will install a siltation fence during construction for protection from soil erosion and sediment control. They will be installing an Adventex system that has been  approved by DEM.  This application meets the requirements of section 801.  Commissioner Hubbard questioned how much gravel will be used.  Mr.  Lawless stated it could be 12 inches. A discussion ensued with the planning commissioners and Mr. Lawless.  Mr. Mike Gray, Town Engineer went to the site and reviewed the design plan and drainage computations.  There are limitations to the volume that the chambers can hold.  Regarding the increase in runoff, it would be nice to have measures in place to accommodate those storms.  Mr. Lawless stated there will be overflow relief.  He doesn’t have soil characteristics but all of the increase in volume was considered in the figures.  Mike Gray stated that because of the watershed haybales should be placed along the silt fence on the down grading side.  The frontage of property on Severance Lane should have haybales in addition to a silt fence.  It would provide extra safety.  They are not sure if Severence Lane is public or a private road, this needs to be researched.  The applicants family has always maintained the road.  This issue needs to be resolved once and for all.  If it is publicly owned and hasn’t been accepted it can be done without the planning commissions involvement.  The Gladdings will take it over as a private road if it has not been dedicated to the Town.  The cul de sac will not be developed until further lots are developed.  Commissioner Brown asked if it is the intention to keep the gravel road at the new lot even if it is developed in the future.  She would like to see it left gravel. Commissioner Hubbard stated then it should be private.  A motion was made by Commissioner Hubbard and seconded by Commissioner Calabretta to approve the Development Plan Review subject to resolution of the road by the public works and planning departments and also add hay bales per the town engineer recommendation.    So voted: 

Gary Girard – Aye                                Victor Calabretta – Aye

Betty Hubbard – Aye               William Kelly – Aye

Jean Macgregor Brown – Aye  Barry Holland - Aye

                                                            Motion carries by a vote of 6-0

VI.       Old Business

1.         Jamestown Housing Plan – (continued) - Discussion and Recommendation by the Planning Commission (continued)

Commissioner Girard asked Lisa Bryer, Town Planner to go over all the changes.  Ms. Bryer stated that the document has been reorganized to flow better and be more user friendly. They removed duplicate information and bulleted where possible.  The implementation section was refined and all recommendations were put in implementation not in the analysis sections.  The definition of Affordable Housing was moved to the front of the document.  Commissioner Girard asked if there is priority given to Jamestowners?  To the greatest extent that we can, we have emphasized this.  RI Housing wants the figures of 2000 income level and current housing costs, Commissioner Girard questioned this and Melanie Jewitt from Barbara Sokoloff’s office says they will not accept it unless it is done this way.  A statement should be added that says we are fully aware of the data differences from 2000 to 2004.   The goal is making it a more convincing and understandable document.  

 

Brigid Ryan from Church Community Housing stated we are trying to meet a state requirement.  Commissioner Hubbard stated she could not afford to buy her house right now and that many people on the island are in the same situation.  Commissioner Kelly suggests to compile the information and take the comments and get clarification.  The planning commission would like to form a subcommittee to move this process along faster since there is a deadline.  Lisa Bryer suggested lets focus tonight on the strategies.  Commissioners Hubbard, Brown and Kelly are interested in being on this sub committee. 

Lets move on to strategies and if there are problems with tables and numbers or typos give to the subcommittee.

 

Strategies, revise the zoning ordinance.  Put in the 2 per street number that they came up with as far as it would only be 2 affordable houses per street in the village even if all lots were developed as anticipated.  Town Planner Lisa Bryer stated none of the funding sources will be the sole answer by itself, it will take all of them together to provide the gap funding that we need.  A discussion regarding when does an impact fee come into place ensued.  Are fair share development fees feasible for Jamestown?  Commissioner Girard says to explore.  The town will explore a variety of incentives.  Do you want density bonuses in the plan Melanie Jewett asked?  Commissioner Girard wants it in.  A tax break only deals with property values.  If someone donates some land to the land trust do they have any input as to how the property is developed?   Brigid Ryan stated she would assume they would.  Whoever lives there has a 99 year lease.  Brigid Ryan stated that without a plan that at any point in time a developer can walk into Jamestown and ask for 25 units when only 6 is allowed by zoning, if he says a certain number will go to affordable housing he will get it.  The Town has 3 options, Adopt and implement, adopt and do nothing or do not even adopt a housing plan.  If you choose option 3 then that’s what could happen.  The commission discussed a plan to provide monetary incentive to homeowners with illegal accessory apartments right now to come forward.  Add a new strategy in the plan. 

 

A motion to continue the meeting past 10:00 p.m. to 10:15 p.m. was made by Commissioner Hubbard it was seconded by Commissioner Calabretta.  So unanimously voted.

Dennis Webster asked how density bonuses would affect the character of Jamestown.  The small houses sold now have now become bigger houses, and it is changing the character of downtown now.

Commissioner Brown asked what about the lots that people are paying taxes on, that they cannot build on at this time?  Several commissioners have serious concerns about increasing density.  The Planner discussed transferring development rights from areas that have environmental issues such as the Jamestown Shores to areas that are able to handle a slight increase in density.   If this were done then the overall buildout number of Jamestown would not increase.  Commissioner Hubbard wants to insure that we do not eliminate using existing homes for affordable housing.  It does not always have to be new homes.  That will be added as a strategy. 

Commissioner Girard made a motion that was seconded by Commissioner Calabretta to let the subcommittee make the changes to this plan and present this at the next Planning meeting for approval.  So unanimously voted.

 

2.         Jamestown Land Bank and Affordable Housing Trust Act- (continued) – review and comment

Commissioner Hubbard stated that we should speed up the action on this issue and it should be part of the housing plan funding sources.  This item should be continued until a later date for discussion.  Probably the second meeting in October.

 

A motion to adjourn was made by Commissioner Calabretta and seconded by Commissioner Girard at 10:25 p.m.  So unanimously voted.

 

Attest:

 

Cinthia Reppe                           This meeting was recorded on 1 micro-cassette