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Planning Board Minutes 10/16/2013

P.O. BOX 602
(508) 696-4270
Fax (508) 696-7341


DATE:           October 16, 2013
TIME:                   7:00 PM

PLACE:          Town Hall Annex

ATTENDANCE:     Doble, Seidman, Stephenson and Thompson

BILLS:          Postmaster………………..$60.00
                        Verizon (Sept 2013)………$55.92

MINUTES:                As referred in the, 2013 Meeting Agenda
                        02 October 2013         m/s/c   3/0/0


7:15 PM June Parker, 59 Leonard Circle Re: Noise Abatement

Ms. Parker wanted to suggest to the Planning Board to consider the possibility of revising section 07.09 (Noise, Illumination, etc.) to read “In Residential Districts and Business Districts, it shall be considered a violation of the uses permitted under this Bylaw if, between the hours of 11 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m., a property owner, …).

Mr. Stephenson inquired about the issue or situation that prompted her to suggest the bylaw amendment. Ms. Parker replied that she had an issue with a neighbor, on whom she had to call the police on seven or eight occasions to contain the noise from the parties he held every night during the summer. On the occasions the police responded to her calls, they advised her that the regulations pertaining to noise, nuisance etc. were antiquated and ineffective. It basically allowed them to issue warnings without further repercussions.

Mr. Stephenson noted that there were two sets of regulations addressing the issue and mentioned both the town bylaw and zoning regulations.  Ms. Parker realized this after researching the topic, and had written the Board of Selectmen for an appointment to ask them to revise the town bylaw. She was trying to address her dilemma on both fronts in hopes of curtailing her neighbor’s activities, which occurred from midnight to four in the morning.  Ms. Parker added that approximately twenty of her neighbors had also sent emails to the Board of Selectmen asking them to address the issue. To date they’ve not responded. She was still trying to get on the Board of Selectmen’s agenda, but to no avail.

Mr. Seidman inquired about the number of people residing on the property, because of its potential for a zoning violation, which would allow the Building Inspector investigate. Ms. Parker noted that Mr. Barwick had been extremely helpful, and had sent her neighbor letters asking him to stop the violation, and it appeared to curtail the activity. Mr. Barwick explained to her that he would have to pursue the matter in court, but that it would take some time.

Ms. Doble inquired about the differences between the ordinances she referred to earlier in the discussion relative to the town’s regulations.  In 2011, the Town of Edgartown limited the disturbance created from noise at 50 feet from a neighbor, vehicle, boat, etc.  The Town of Tisbury allows noise up to 1/10th of a mile, so that everyone within that range has no recourse.

Mr. Stephenson noted that the complaint did not pertain to a zoning violation (i.e. construction activity), in that the disturbance was more of a nuisance from the habitual congregation of individuals late at night. Despite repeated warnings, the infractions continued for lack of penalties. Ms. Parker mentioned that the Town of Edgartown assigned a $100.00 fine to the first offense, $200.00 for the second offense and $300.00 for the third offense.  Mr. Stephenson thought the town bylaw should be amended.

Ms. Parker thought the zoning bylaw and town bylaw had to be revised, because the zoning regulation addressed the time issue and the latter dealt with the distance.  She understood that the Planning Board had the ability to revise the zoning regulations, while the Board of Selectmen could amend the town bylaw and incorporate the penalties as part of their regulations. Ms. Parker indicated that she has repeatedly tried to schedule an appointment with the Board of Selectmen, without any success.

Mrs. Loberg inquired if the Planning Board would consider writing to the Board of Selectmen a letter in support of Ms. Parker’s petition, noting the urgency of the matter. Mr. Stephenson replied in the affirmative.  Mrs. Doble agreed, and inquired if Ms. Parker tried scheduling a meeting with Mr. Grande, the Town Administrator.  Ms. Parker indicated that she had emailed Mr. Grande a copy of Edgartown’s regulations when she sought an appointment with the Board of Selectmen. He has not responded as well.

The Board agreed to send the Board of Selectmen a letter asking them to give Ms. Parker the opportunity to voice her concern with the town’s regulations on noise and their enforcement.


1. MV Museum
RE: Discussion of Exterior treatment

Board members were advised that the topic was placed on the agenda at Mr. Peak’s request.  The Board did not know what the issues were for placing the topic on the agenda, and agreed to postpone the discussions.

2. Stop & Shop (S&S)

Mr. Stephenson reported that S&S will not be obtaining permits this fall, as hoped, and are re-thinking their proposal. Mr. Grande has advised him that the Parking Design and Planning Committee will not be meeting until November 14, 2013.  In the interim, he was preparing reference materials for the committee members that have been generated by the MV Commission and the Planning Board so that they could review the reports prior to the first meeting.  

Mr. Stephenson indicated that Mr. Grande did not expect the committee to produce a specific parking lot design, but to function as a resource to the actual architects and designers.

Mr. Stephenson advised the Board that the MV Commission had tentatively scheduled a meeting for the LUPC on November 21, 2013 to review the traffic report.  He planned on attending the session, and wanted to submit a revised version of the Planning Board’s previous commentary pertaining to the municipal parking lot. Board members were given copies of the October 15, 2013 document, herein attached to the minutes, and directed the Board to the more salient points. Subjects addressed were the Shared Use Path, wider lanes and two-way circulation, pedestrian access, landscaped public area and restroom.

The potential alternatives addressing the issues in the exiting layout of the municipal parking lot were illustrated in the attached schematic of a renovated parking lot.

Board members were directed to pages three and four of the document listing specific issues to be considered as it effects projects the Planning Board has been discussing and working on with the MV Commission, such as the need for a public easement on Cromwell Lane, its use for a Shared Use Path and a wider sidewalk on the north side of the parking lot.

Board members did not express any issues with the revisions. Mr. Stephenson asked the Board if they would review the material at home and get back to him with any corrections, or revisions by Monday afternoon.

3. ZBA Historic Commission’s partnership with the Tisbury Historic Commission

The Board agreed to postpone the discussions on the topic, until Mr. Peak was present at the meeting.

4. Zoning Bylaws
RE: Amendments

The Planning Board Adm. Secretary submitted four bylaw amendments for the Board’s review.  

The first bylaw amendment pertained to section 04.05.04 (R3A District Non-Farm Buildings) in which the language was revised to read “One (1) non-residential detached accessory use (e.g. pool, tennis court, etc.) or structure (e.g. garage, greenhouse, barn, etc.) with a total area not to exceed one-half (1/2) the total floor area of the principal structure”.

The revision clearly stated the intent of the bylaw to limit the number of structures and uses in the R3A District to minimize development in an area that’s within the zone of contribution.

The second bylaw amendment pertained to section 07.03.04 (Wedges and Irregular Shaped Lots), in which the following paragraph was added to eliminate any confusion for the purpose of the regulation to allow developers some flexibility in the layout of building lots being created around a cul-de-sac.

Said regulation does not apply to the further division of lots created in an original subdivision.

The third bylaw amendment eliminated language in section 07.04 (Deep Lot) that superseded state law. The revision eliminated the allowance for an intervening lot and the use of the Form C review process for ANRs in the R3A District.

The fourth bylaw amendment eliminated a restriction imposed on the Planning Board in Section 07.11, pertaining to the special permit determination for multi-unit dwellings. The regulation implied that the Planning Board could not make a determination on the need for multi-unit dwelling structures relative to its consistency with public policy, unless it was in a residential district.  To expand its application, the amendment eliminates “in residential districts” so that it may be applied on a town wide basis.

Board members were advised that Mr. Peak was preparing a bylaw amendment that merged the Site Plan Review Committee and the Site Plan Review Board and reorganize the latter to eliminate the duplicity.

Mr. Thompson offered to write a bylaw amendment addressing the regulation of Medical Marijuana Centers in town.  The Board Secretary was to provide Mr. Thompson sample ordinances that have been adopted within the state to develop a draft for the Board’s review.

Mr. Seidman inquired if the Board was going to consider Ms. Parker’s request to amend section 07.09.  He questioned whether the density in the residential districts is creating an issue with noise to require stricter regulations. He thought the parameters of the current regulation allowed noise at a very late hour.

Mr. Stephenson asked the Board what they believed should be the cut off point (e.g. 9 PM, 10 PM). Mrs. Loberg did not think it was a good idea to change the law based on one complaint.  Mr. Seidman sympathized with Ms. Parker, but noted that it was a matter of civility, which could not be regulated via zoning.


1.  Timothy McLean, Town Treasurer
RE: Five Year Capital Plan Form

2. Rebecca Rocheleau, Legislative Aide to Rep Tim Madden
RE: Mass Dept. of Agriculture Resources – Notice (comment period re: NSTAR 2013 YPO Cape Cod (submarine hybrid cable)

3. Martha’s Vineyard Commission
A. October 11, 2013 Extended Schedule
B. October 2013 Newsletter

4. Tisbury Conservation Commission
A. Public Hearing Notice – Sarah Shepard, AP 11A19 (maintenance/pier)
B. Public Hearing Notice -  Town of Tisbury, AP 13D03 (maintenance/timber pier)
C. Public Hearing Notice – Tisbury DPW, Skiff Ave (new sidewalk)
D .Public Hearing Notice – Tisbury DPW, resurfacing Causeway Road (from State Rd)
E. Public Hearing Notice – Meadow Path Nominee Trust, AP 33A05 (reconstruction/swimming pool)

5. Georgino DosSantos – University of New York
RE: 2012 Capstone Project

5. Massachusetts Municipal Association
RE: TheBeacon, October 2013

7. West-Thomson
RE: Zoning Bulletin, 25 September 2013

PRO FORM        Meeting opened, conducted and closed in due form at 8:55 P.M.           (m/s/c  3/0/0)          
Respectfully submitted;
Patricia V. Harris, Secretary

APPROVAL:       Approved and accepted as official minutes;

______________          _________________________
Date                    Henry Stephenson