Planning Board September Workshop Meeting Minutes

Walpole Planning Board Workshop Meeting
Town Hall
September, 2016 Minutes
7 pm

Present: Chair Jeff Miller, Vice-Chair Robert Miller, James Aldrich, Jason Perron, Dennis Marcom, Jeff White, Steve Dalessio (Selectboard Representative). Alternate: Ed Potter. Absent: Joanna Andros.
Zoning Board: Myra Mansouri, Chair.

In September 2015, the NH General Court amended a subdivision regulation dealing with Accessory Dwelling Units. Last month, the people who were at the Planning Board Workshop meeting discussed Attached Dwelling Units and Detached Accessory Dwelling Units. (See WPB minutes of August 23, 2016.) This meeting was a continuation of that discussion.

In anticipation of the first meeting, Selectman Steve Dalessio prepared a draft of what a new ordinance might look like. The draft was simply a jumping off place to start the discussion. Mr. Dalessio made a couple of changes to the draft after last month’s meeting. There was a lively exchange of ideas among those present and many viewpoints were presented. Here are a some of the major changes agreed to at the end of the meeting.

The term Accessory Dwelling Unit will not be considered because, as in many cases, the zoning ordinances already permit this type of building in all districts if the property conforms to the zoning regulations. So, the petition will address only Detached Accessory Dwelling Units (DADU). Here are some of the changes and some things that remain the same as the previous draft.

Minimum lot size must be 5 acres.

The minimum area of a DADU may not be less than 750 square feet nor greater than 900 square feet.

No more than three (3) bedrooms may be permitted in a DADU.

DADUs must be within 150 feet of the principal dwelling unit.

2. The DADU may be within a separate detached building on the property such as a garage or barn.

3. Unless otherwise provided for herein, all existing regulations applicable to single-family dwellings shall also apply to the combination of a principal dwelling unit and a DADU, including standards for maximum occupancy per bedroom consistent with policy adopted by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.

No change in No. 4 except that ADU is removed and DADU replaces it.

5. When converting an existing structure or a portion of a DADU, compliance with applicable sections of the state fire code and state building code shall be required.

6. All applications to create an DADU shall demonstrate to the Zoning Board of Adjustment that the property has ample parking for both the principal unit and the DADU.

7. When the creation of a new detached structure requires an addition to or modification of the exterior of the existing single-family home or existing detached structure, or the creation of a new detached structure, the architectural design and details to be used shall be aesthetically compatible with and maintain an aesthetic continuity with the principal dwelling unit as a single-family dwelling.

Section 8 remains the same with the DADU replacing ADU. Section 8 says that one of the units on a property with a DADU must be owner-occupied. Whichever dwelling unit is not the property owner’s principal place of residence may be rented to a person(s) unrelated to the property owner.

Such an intent on the part of the property owner is evidenced by, among other things, his or her voter’s registration, vehicle registration, driver’s license, or the placement of his or her children in local schools.

Any temporary lapse of owner occupancy in the primary residence caused by the death of a property owner shall be permitted for a reasonable period of administration.

The DADU should not be subdivided from the primary residence unless the DADU meets all the current zoning requirements.

Mr. Dalessio will rewrite his third draft. The fourth draft will be considered at the October Planning Board meeting on Tuesday, October 11, 2016. If the Planning Board approves the new draft, a request will be made to hold a Public Hearing on the petition to go on the warrant in March 2017. A Public Hearing will be held in November and the petition will be recommended or not recommended.

Respectfully submitted,
Marilou Blaine

Posted; Inside Town Offices, bulletin board outside Walpole Grocery
cc: WPB, Town Offices, The Walpolean

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