Planning Board Meeting Minutes – 3/12/19

Presiding Members: Jeffrey Miller, Chair, Robert Miller, Vice-Chair, James Aldrich, Secretary, Dennis Marcom, Jeff White, Select Board Representative Steve Dalessio. Alternates: Joanna Andros, Jeff Colley. Absent: Jason Perron.


Recording: Marilou Blaine. These minutes are unapproved and will be reviewed at the regular April 2019 meeting for corrections, additions and/or omissions.


Minutes: Mr. Aldrich made a motion to approve the minutes and workshop minutes as written. Mr. R. Miller seconded the motion and the motion carried. Mr. J. Miller asked alternate Jeff Colley to fill in for Jason Perron.


Solar project: Mr. J. Miller announced that there was a scheduling change with representatives from Solar Clean Generation. The meeting was changed to April 9, the regular date for a Planning Board meeting. Solar Clean Generation is planning to construct a solar farm at 310 Main St., the property behind the former RN Johnson storage barn.


Old Business: 

Public Hearing: Lot Line Adjustment, Map 11, Lots 45, 51 and 59. Add acreage from two abutting lots to the land of Michael and Katherine Nerrie, 507 March Hill Road. The Nerries are acquiring 25.05 acres from Lot 45 and 12.79 acres from Lot 51 and adding that acreage to Lot 59 making it 74.54 acres. All lots in rural/ag.


Surveyor Joe DiBernardo introduced himself and said he was representing Katherine and Michael Nerrie. He explained that the Nerrie property was on March Hill Road where they own a sizable piece of property. The Nerries want to acquire two pieces of land and merge them with their existing lot. One lot is 12.79 acres and owned by Joseph J. and Barbara A. Jackson.  Road frontage for the two lots will be 226.95 feet of the Jackson property on March Hill Road. The second parcel is 25.05 acres and owned by Alan J. and Linda Smith, which also abuts the Jackson property. Mr. DiBernardo said that power lines run through both tracts of land. Mr J. Miller asked if there were any questions. There being none, he closed the Public Hearing.


Public Hearing: Tim Graves and Gretchen Fowler, 831 Wentworth Road.

Mr. DiBernardo represented Mr. Graves and Mrs. Fowler. They requested a three-lot subdivision on their property – Tax Map No. 1, Lot 16. Wentworth Road ends and then becomes a Class 6 road until it goes to the Westmoreland line. 


Lot No. 1 is 5.95 acres with 203.36 feet of frontage. There is an existing home and shop on this parcel. Lot No. 2 is 22.95 acres with 456.84 feet of frontage and it is currently vacant farm land. Lot No.3 is 54.32 acres with 200.95 feet of frontage and is farmland as well as a gravel pit. All the frontage is on Wentworth Road. There is access to a gravel pit across land owned by the state. The state-owned land is the Cheshire Branch Railroad Corridor.

The Planning Board received a letter from Railroad Planner Louis A. Barker stating that the Department of Transportation Bureau of Rail and Transit “does not object to the proposed subdivision so long as all access for Lots 1 and 2 are restricted to Wentworth Road and will have no access across the State-Owned Cheshire Branch Railroad Corridor. As such, the current Crossing Agreement with the Graves will be restricted to Lot 3 and limited to current and future gravel operations within Lot 3.” 


Mr. Miller asked if there were any questions. Mr. Marcom asked about the stream at the bottom of the map. Mr. DiBernardo said it mostly in Westmoreland.


Patricia Rodrigues of Westmoreland said she was not notified of the meeting. Mr. J. Miller asked if she was an abutter. She said she lived across from gravel pit and was a “sight” abutter. There is a strip of land between her home and the gravel pit. She then asked why there was no access road to the gravel pit. Mr. DiBernardo pointed out on the map where the access to the gravel pit was. He said the existing road doesn’t have to be the access point. The amount of road frontage is part of ordinance and a subdivision requirement.


When Ms. Rodrigues continued talking about access to the gravel pit, Mr. J. Miller said that Mr. Graves had a licensed gravel pit and the state is the one who is in charge of licensing gravel pits. The state also grants access and if you have a problem with access, she should take it up with the state. Referencing a letter from the state already mentioned above, Miller said the state has already said it doesn’t have a problem with the subdivision.


Ms. Rodrigues continued to want to talk about access but Mr. M. Miller said, “That is not what the Board is talking about tonight. This is a Public Hearing for a subdivision of land and nothing else.” 


He then asked if there were any other questions. Mr. Aldrich stated, “This (subdivision) is all in Walpole.” Mr. DiBernardo said, “We are not changing anything in Westmoreland.”


Mr. J. Miller asked if there we any more questions. There being none, he closed the Public Hearing. The Board then voted on the two hearings.


Mr. Aldrich made a motion to approve the lot line adjustment for the Nerries as presented. Mr. Marcom seconded the motion and the Board voted to approve the motion. No one opposed the adjustment.


Then Mr. R. Miller made a motion to approve the Graves subdivision as presented. Mr. Aldrich seconded the motion and the Board voted to approve the motion. No one opposed the subdivision.

New Business: Mr. DiBernardo explained a new project from Avanru Development Corp. requesting a boundary line adjustment of two lots that front on Route 12. The property in question is on Main Street, also known as Route 12, just south of Tractor Supply, Map 12, Lots 13 and 13-3. Avanru wants to change the lot sizes so that Lot 13 will shrink to 1.05 acres and Lot 13-3 will be now be 7.35 acres.


Lot 13 will have 150.01 feet road frontage on Route 12 and Lot 13-3 will have 247.37 feet road frontage on Route 12. The land is zoned rural ag/commercial. Avanru owns a 6-foot strip in front of the pump station and the town has an easement over it. There are two rights-of-way, one on each property. There is a sewer line that runs down Red Barn Lane.  


Mr. Aldrich made a motion to have a Public Hearing in April. Mr. Marcom seconded the motion and the motion passed unanimously.


Ben and Dan Northcott – Two Voluntary Mergers – One of the mergers was for Dan Northcott and the second one was for Cheney Hill Realty LLC. A voluntary merger requires the applicant to fill out page 1 of the regular application form as well as a form for voluntary mergers. The form requires the applicant to identify the parcels of land being merged. These parcels may no longer be separately transferred without subdivision approval and will henceforth be know as one lot on the tax map. The merger form must be notarized and registered with the Cheshire County Registry of Deeds. There is a $12 fee.


Mr. Dan Northcott wanted to merge two lots on Leclair Rd. One has his home on it and the other is free from structures. Map 11, Lots 16-1 and 16-2. His house will now be on one lot. The second merger is for Cheney Hill Realty LLC. There are three lots and the merger will join two of the lots, Map 13 Lot 34 and Lot 34-5, into one lot. 


Mr. Aldrich made a motion to approve both voluntary mergers. The motion was seconded and approved by the rest of the Board. Mr. J. Miller will meet with Mr. Dan Northcott after the forms have been filled out, signed and notarized and sign the form. The secretary will register them.


Broadband Committee: Mr. Dalessio said a committee was being formed to study broadband access and a Planning Board Member was needed on the committee. Mr. Marcom volunteered to be on the committee.


Workshop: There will be workshop on Tuesday, March 26 to finalize the guidelines for solar installations for residential and commercial properties.


Mr. Aldrich made a motion to adjourn The motion was seconded and approved by the rest of the Board.

Respectfully submitted,

Marilou Blaine

WPB Secretary


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