Friday, February 26, 2010
Homeowner projects near wetlands (mostly) avoid hot water
• 779 West Street. More than three and half months have passed since the Conservation Commission (ConsCom) issued an Enforcement Order to Gregory Bruell stopping construction of his Japanese garden. The commission had identified more than a dozen violations of his permit under the Wetlands Protection Act and the Carlisle Wetlands Bylaw. Bruell hired Jon Storer, a licensed septic system installer familiar with wetlands permitting requirements, to “fix things.” Storer explained the project status at the February 11 ConsCom meeting.
Storer engaged Stamski and McNary Engineering to re-flag the wetlands boundary and to restore damage from a pond improperly dug by Bruell near a bordering vegetated wetland with a documented vernal pool. He submitted a restoration plan that the ConsCom deemed acceptable, with a change requiring that original grades be restored.
The second document presented by Storer, a garden management plan, proved more problematic. This had been required, but never received, prior to the start of work in the spring of 2009. Storer had previously indicated that Zen Associates, who designed the Japanese garden, had been asked to prepare the plan.
The plan submitted to the ConsCom carried no letterhead or name of the individual preparing it. As Smith indicated: “There is nothing to indicate that a professional is involved and responsible.” Expressing frustration, she said that if a professionally prepared and attested to plan is not submitted, she would like to revoke the Order of Conditions: “This has just been going on too long.” Conservation Administrator Sylvia Willard pointed out that an OOC gives the ConsCom authority to enter private property and inspect work.
Chair Peter Burn then focused on the slow response to correcting the violations: “We seem to be getting just enough to keep us from getting really, really irritated, but not enough to keep us from being irritated.” After more deliberation the ConsCom asked Storer to provide a revised restoration plan and an appropriate garden management plan by March 12. The project will be further discussed at the March 18 meeting at 8:45 p.m.
• 142 Bedford Road. On behalf of the applicant, William O’Brian of Pinnacle Partners, Ben Ewing of Stamski and McNary Engineering presented plans for a new dwelling and associated work in a wetland buffer zone at the site formerly occupied by an old concrete block house.
The board first approved a Certificate of Compliance for an existing permit to tear down the old house, because that work had been satisfactorily completed. However, the ConsCom wanted to wait for Board of Health approval before completing its review and acting on the new permit request. The applicant agreed to continue the hearing to 9 p.m on February 25..
• 784 North Road. The ConsCom approved a permit for homeowners Margery and Edgar Berube to remove 18 trees in a wetland buffer zone for safety reasons. On several occasions adjacent trees have fallen on the family’s buildings and vehicles. The public hearing had been continued twice due to lack of a file number from DEP, which had been received.
• 173 Rockland Road. With a file number in hand and following submission of a revised plan making a minor correction requested by the Planning Board, Sharyl and Scott Stropkay received approval to install a new sewage disposal system and well, and to repave their driveway.
• 274 Heald Road. Because the work was completed according to plan, the board approved a Certificate of Compliance for a septic system replacement project to applicant and former homeowner Paul DiCristina. ∆
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