ZONING BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT
APRIL 6TH, 2010
AGENDA: CONTINUED VARIANCE; Alfred and Cynthia DeFeo/Robert Spencer, REQUESTING TWO (2) VARIANCES FOR 35 Pine Street, Map 217 Lot 078; to build an addition and deck within the required 20’ front yard setback AND to permit an addition to a legal non-conforming structure on a non-conforming lot in the “L”, Lake District.
ATTENDING: Sandra Heaney - Chair, Ashley Dolloff, Larry Denton, Alan DeStefano, Lorraine Bohmiller.
ABSENT: Sara Shattuck (alternate)
OTHER: Michelle Bonsteel, Land Use Officer and acting Recording Secretary, Janice DellaCroce (Planning Board), Shaun Lageux (abutter), Robert Spencer (representing Defeo), Al DeFeo, applicant.
The Chair called the meeting to order at 6:00 PM. The Chair opted to hold approval of the minutes and election of officers until the end of the meeting.
Continued Variance: Alfred DeFeo.
The Chair explained to the applicant and his representative that there would only be four (4) members voting on the application, as Mr. Denton had recused himself. This would require a minimum of three (3) members agreeing to grant the variances requested.
Robert Spencer, builder, was present, as was the property owner, Al DeFeo. Mr. DeFeo and Mr. Spencer agreed to be heard with a four member board.
Mr. Spencer began by requesting a withdrawal of the variance request to permit construction within the front yard setback. Mr. Spencer stated that the property owner opted to withdraw the area variance to simplify the application.
Mr. DeFeo explained the motivation for the improvements and answered the criteria for the board, as follows:
Question 1: Public Interest; there would be no adverse effects to neighboring properties as there is no regarding associated with the project. The addition is only 5’ by 20’, which is not substantial, and the lot the existing house is located on is a double sized lot for the area. The roof peak will only be raised 4’ to provide adequate pitch to prevent ice damming. The addition will be set back from the street to meet the 20’ setback, which is less impact then meeting the current plane of the front of the house. No views will be affected by the new peak height or by the addition. The construction will not adversely affect property values.
Question 2: Spirit; The addition will meet all setbacks and height limitations of the ordinance.
Question 3: Substantial Justice; The addition will afford the homeowners the ability to live in the community year round.
Question 4: Values: The surrounding properties values will be enhanced by the renovation and addition work performed on the residence. New windows, doors, roofing and siding are included in the project for the entire residence.
Question 5: Hardship: Currently the house is not energy efficient. The installation of new doors, windows, roofing and insulation will insure energy efficiency and comfort for the homeowners and prevent broken and frozen pipes, as is occurring now. The owner stated that the hardship would be in not allowing the improvements. The roof, in particular, due to the shallow pitch, leaks constantly from ice dams. The new roof pitch will eliminate that problem. In addition, the bedrooms are very small having a horizontal measurement of only 7’, barely enough to accommodate a bed. There are no closets in the bedrooms. The additional 5’x 20’ would enable a reasonable use of the property for year round use as it will enlarge the bedrooms sufficiently to provide for closets and a shower.
The Chair asked the applicant if he was familiar with the ordinance in question. The applicant stated that he was. He explained that, in answer to the ordinance, there would be no increase in population as they were not adding any bedrooms or baths and that there was not a significant change in impervious surfaces for the addition, noting there would be no regarding of the property. Mr. DeFeo stated that they were only enlarging the existing structure sufficiently to provide minimum space needs.
Mr. DeFeo stated that if the repairs to the existing structure did not occur soon that there would be additional damage suffered by the structure because of the condition of the roof. He noted that the exterior walls were showing signs of strees and bowing from the snow loads.
Mr. DeFeo stated that the house was constructed in 1954. The proposed addition would maintain the architectural integrity of that era.
The Chair opened the meeting for public comment. Sean Lageux of Overlook Road stated that he was in favor of granting the variance and was also glad to hear that the seasonal use would become a full time residential property.
There being no other comments, the Chair closed the public comment portion.
The board deliberated each point. Mr. DeStefano noted that there was an important distinction to this property as it was not lake front and that it was on an oversized lot. The Chair noted that the addition was small and was only enough to satisfy the minimum needs of the applicant. In general, the comments reflected that there would be more injustice not to grant the variance. It was also noted by the board that the proposed renovation and addition would enhance neighborhood property values, provide a reasonable use of the property, and enhance surrounding properties. It was noted that not to grant the variance would cause unnecessary hardship for the applicant as the roof would continue to leak and structural damage would continue to affect the building.
The Chair asked for a motion: Alan DeStefano made the motion to approve the variance, Lorraine Bohmiller seconded. All aye. Motion carried.
The Chair cautioned the applicant that there was a 30 day appeal period.
It was noted that Dr. Carlson had filed a motion for rehearing which will come before the board in May. Also in May, the wetland report for the Messina application was received by the town and will be reviewed by the Planning Board on April 14th, 2010.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES: March 2nd, 2010
Mr. Denton noted an error on page 3 paragraph 3: “brother-in-law” should read “sister-in-law’s brother”.
Alan DeStefano made a motion to accept the minutes as amended, Larry Denton seconded. All Aye.
The Chair made a motion to elect Alan DeStefano Chair of the ZBA, Lorraine Bohmiller seconded. All Aye
Alan DeStefano made the motion to elect Sandra Heaney Vice-Chair, Larry Denton seconded. All Aye.
Alan DeStefano made a motion to adjourn, Ashley Dolloff seconded. All Aye.