Friday, February 27, 2009
Planning Board shorts, Feb. 23
• Wireless Bylaw revisions. With no additional comment or testimony received from the public, the Planning Board voted to close the public hearing on February 23. Major subsections of 5.9 “Personal Wireless Communication Facilities” will be deleted and replaced. The changes relate to the board’s stated objective to: (1) Simplify organization of the bylaw, (2) Set forth goals of the bylaw with a list of priorities, and (3) Try to influence wireless facility applicants to move toward less intrusive technologies.
Consistent with these objectives a new requirement will be imposed on an applicant for a wireless facility special permit: “If requested by the Planning Board, applicants shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Planning Board that they have investigated locations or facilities higher in priority ranking than the one they are applying for and that such higher priority ranked alternative(s) is (are) not available to provide coverage that would be substantially similar to the coverage that would be provided by the Facility which is proposed….”
• Solar power Public Hearing. In contrast to the flurry of questions and comments on wind turbines (see article above), the discussion of proposed zoning bylaw changes related to solar systems was passive and subdued. Proposed changes to Section 18.104.22.168: “Accessory use incidental to a permitted main use on the same premises….” would add solar systems for generations of electricity to the list of permitted uses. Some controls will be imposed on maximum height of such an installation – “three feet above the highest point of the roof….”
For safety considerations there will be some restrictions imposed for photovoltaic panels that are mounted on a freestanding structure.
The public hearing will be continued in conjunction with the wind turbine hearing at 8:45 p.m. on March 9.
• Joint meeting with the Board of Health. Ostensibly to review potential changes to bylaws and various boards’ rules and regulations recommended by attorney and planner Jon Witten, a consultant to the Planning Board, the meeting evolved into an in-depth discussion of beneficial interactions between the two groups.
Major conclusions were that review by the Board of Health of development projects and conservation cluster projects could be facilitated if plot plans were available in PDF format (Portable Document Format). Also, they agreed that review of water/sewage considerations would be enhanced if road profiles were available in conjunction with preliminary plans. Further, peer review of water handling at the preliminary plan stage on the project site relevant to wells and septic systems could be paid for through the Planning Board 53G account (that is funded by the developer) rather than relying on the Board of Health budget. ∆
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