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Planning Board Minutes 01/15/2014

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


DATE:           January 15, 2014
TIME:                   7:00 PM

PLACE:          Town Hall Annex

ATTENDANCE:      Aldrin, Peak, Seidman, Stephenson, Stoble and Thompson
                        Fin Com:  Mary Ellen Larsen, Melinda Loberg

BILLS:          Realty Publishing Company…….$150.00
                        MV Times………….. …………$1210.00

MINUTES:                As referred in the, 2013 Meeting Agenda
                        18 December 2013        Deferred
08 January 2014         Deferred


1. Medical Marijuana Center
RE: Proposed bylaw amendments

Board Members reviewed copies of a draft bylaw containing language from the Towns of Norwell, Oak Bluffs and a template provided by Hill Law regulating registered marijuana dispensaries. They were informed that the reference to MGL C. 94G did not exist. Research on the appropriate reference from the Mass. Dept. of Public Health revealed that the correct reference was MGL Ch. 369 (Acts 2012 – An Act for the humanitarian use of marijuana).

Board members were informed that both MGL Ch.369 and the Mass. Dept. of Public Health’s regulations (105 CMR 725.000) contained definitions, qualifications, security measures and restrictions for the patient, caregiver and dispensary agent.~ Members were also given copies of a handout the Mass Dept. of Public Health prepared for municipalities with information on commonly asked questions.~ It addressed several of the Board’s questions that were raised at the last meeting on 08 January 2014, which were subsequently incorporated into the draft bylaw.

The Board Secretary noted that she included language contained within the bylaw demonstrating that the sections pertaining to the residential districts, Business District I and the Waterfront Commercial District did in fact state “any use not permitted is specifically prohibited”.~ The draft bylaw amendment was structured so that the RMD was solely permitted in the Business District II.

Mr. Seidman noted that the title and a couple of the references to the use had to be revised to RMD to make it consistent.~ Mrs. Doble mentioned that she had created a bullet list to make sure that they did not overlook any issues or restrictions they should have in place.~ Mr. Peak thought the state through the Mass. Dept. of Public Health had security measures, the qualifications of a patient, caregiver, definitions, etc. in place, so that they only had to make a reference to the law.

Mr. Seidman referred the Board to section of the draft bylaw, and asked the Board if they thought the 1000 sq. ft. limitation to the size of the building was too restrictive, and suggested 1500 sq. ft.~ Board members agreed.

Mr. Seidman inquired if the applicant was allowed to cultivate the produce outdoors. The Board Secretary replied in the affirmative.~ Mr. Thompson noted that they were currently proposed a maximum allowance of 5000 sq. ft in section Mr. Seidman inquired if the state recommended 5000 sq. ft.~ He thought it was a large allowance.~ Board members did not express an interest in revising the allowance.

Mr. Seidman moved on the hours of operation, and thought they should extend the hours until 8PM. Board members agreed.

Board members were advised that the Town of Oak Bluffs had also used Hill Law’s template almost verbatim.~ Mrs. Doble mentioned that the check list she had constructed was based on Hill Law’s template, and realized that the draft bylaw amendment included several items entered on the bullet list.~~ Mr. Seidman inquired if they should incorporate language pertaining to the applicant’s qualifications (e.g. criminal history).~~ Mr. Thompson mentioned that~ the CMR addressed it, since the applicant had to submit an application to the Mass. Dept. of Public Health.~ Mr. Peak recommended adding language stating “An established RMD must comply with all state regulations”.~ Mr. Seidman agreed, noting that it should be the first qualification.~ Mrs. Doble questioned whether the language sufficiently covered the intent. She understood the applicants had to be certified by the state, which would in all likelihood require an unblemished background check. She also noted that in some of the templates, they included language stating “certification and compliance with this section...”.~

Mr. Peak inquired if they should consider adding “No application for a special permit is complete without the applicant demonstrating that they have acquired all licenses and permits required by 105 CMR 725.000 shall be issued to an applicant that cannot demonstrate certification from the state” as the first entry under section 04. Mrs. Doble inquired if the state issued applicants~ a certification or license.~ She referred the Board to section which read, “ All RMDs may not operate, and the special permit will not valid ... and any of its agencies for the facility”.~ Mr. Peak thought the condition was retroactive, and should be listed as a qualification for a special permit in section 03 as the first entry.

Board members inquired if there was an age restriction to prohibit children from entering the premises. Mr. Thompson recalled that the patient and caregiver had to have a registration card. He did not remember reading an age restriction. Mr. Seidman believed anyone 18 years of age should not be restricted.  The board secretary noted that the regulation required the dispensary agent to be at least 21 years of age. The age requirement for the patient and caregiver was not limited because the ailments were not age discriminating.

Mr. Seidman recommended reviewing the draft on a item by item basis, and suggested returning to the last item they agreed upon, which was He wanted to add “ or any place where children commonly congregate”. Mrs. Doble inquired about the other suggestions, such as “ half-way house, and correctional facility “.

Board members were referred to s. Mr. Peak thought the restriction reflected the town’s current regulation for signs.  Mr. Seidman disagreed, noting that it was much more restrictive.  Mr. Peak stood corrected, recalling that the regulation in fact allowed affixed signs to the wall up to 20 square feet.  Mr. Peak inquired about the meaning of “directly illuminated”.. He thought they should keep the language consistent with the existing bylaw. Mr. Seidman also recommended revising the reference to the facility as a RMD to keep the language consistent.

Mr. Peak observed that s. should once again  change the reference to the facility consistent as a RMD and, eliminate the comment referring to the illumination of the sign, because it did not apply to the topic.

Mrs. Doble referred the Board to sections, and thought they addressed Mr. Peak’s concern relative to the applicants’ qualifications and their responsibility to acquire the necessary certifications, licenses and permits as a condition to the special permit.  She recommended moving the three items under s. 04, Special Permit Conditions and Restrictions. Mr. Seidman concurred.

Mr. Seidman thought s. and thought they should eliminate it. Mr. Peak concurred.

Mrs. Doble inquired if they need to add language pertaining to security measures. Mr. Thompson indicated that the issue was addressed in the state’s regulation.

Mr. Seidman inquired if they should regulate the quantity of product a patient could obtain.  The state of Colorado allowed patients with their registration cards were allowed one once per day.  Mr. Peak recalled that state citizens were allowed to purchase one ounce per day and non-residents were allowed ¼ of an ounce per day. Discussions ensued with this regards, the numbers varying, and Mr. Seidman inquired if they wanted to regulate quantities.  The board secretary noted that he state regulated the quantity physicians were legally allowed to write a prescription for, and the quantities patients were allowed to obtain from the dispensary.

The board secretary cautioned the Board that the Mass Dept. of Public Health was recommending to all municipalities to allow the applicant to pursue a special permit, because the applicants had to submit verification from the town if the site was suitable and acceptable for the use.

Mr. Seidman read an excerpt from one of the templates “quantity to be cultivated, processed and sole…”  Mrs. Doble recommended against adding the language into their draft.  Mr. Seidman agreed. She felt the state in their licensing would be covering the activity.  The board secretary recommended reading the materials she had produced for the meeting because it provided a wealth of information.  Mr. Seidman agreed, and suggested revisiting the draft as amended at their meeting next week.

Mrs. Doble inquire if they should list mandatory findings listing the conditions under which they would not issue a special permit. Mr. Seidman did not think it was necessary, if they were going to list their reasons for not granting a special permit under their findings.  

Board members were advised that they had until next week to formulate a draft suitable to submit to the town by January 29, 2014.   

Mr. Hyung Lee inquired if the Planning Board was restricting access to the facility to prevent adults from bringing their children, teenagers or anyone without a medical need for the product.  He inquired if people would be allowed to smoke on the premises or in the outside.  Board members assured Mr. Lee that the state had regulations in place governing and restricting access to the facility, security, etc.

Mr. Hyung inquired if the product could be mailed to the patient. Board members replied that the state regulation allows the patient to have a caregiver, who would be responsible for delivering the product to the patient.  Mr. Hyung inquired if they were allowed to retail marijuana infused products.  The Board replied in the affirmative, with the understanding that they were equally regulated.

2. Stop & Stop, Water Street
A.  Mr. Stephenson’s Draft letter of support / municipal parking lot

Mr. Stephenson thought he may have been premature in asking the Board to vote on his draft letter approving the proposal, without giving the Board the opportunity to discuss their views and their positions on the applicant’s proposal for expansion. He meant to ask the Board to consider endorsing the applicant’s plans for expansion, with conditions pertaining to the municipal parking lot and the traffic circulation (impacts) in the surrounding area.

Mr. Stephenson hoped that the Municipal Parking Lot Committee would have met today as scheduled to come to a consensus about the parking lot’s design for a recommendation to the Board of Selectmen.  It appeared the Committee did not have the opportunity to discuss the design as originally planned, and are at odds with the purpose and goal for the committee. It’s led him to consider asking the Planning Board to allow the municipal parking lot committee to continue functioning under their auspices.

Since they have not had the opportunity to discuss their position on the proposal, and the municipal parking lot committee has not had the time to regroup, he asked the Planning Board if they would consider asking the MV Commission to postpone the Stop & Shop’s hearing on January 23, 2014.

As the Planning Board’s representative on the municipal parking lot committee, he submitted a written report of the issues that have been plaguing the committee. The report, entitled Municipal Lot Committee Issues, dated 15 January 2014 was read into the record and attached to the minutes.  Mr. Stephenson in his report to the Board noted that the committee’s inability to comply with the Board of Selectmen’s request was largely attributed to the Chairman’s strong reliance on Stop & Shop’s consultants (VHB) involvement in the re-design of the parking lot. VHB failed to produce plans in time for their meetings, and did not incorporate the committee’s recommendations.   It created dissension among committee members and the chairman of the committee, who essentially was the one member of the committee to have direct access to VHB.

The report identified three potential solutions that would allow the committee to complete their analysis to submit to the Board of Selectmen. Mr. Stephenson indicated that they needed a secretary to provide a written record of the meetings, recommend to the Planning Board to allow the Municipal Parking Lot Committee to function under their auspices, and refer the parking lot’s re-design to the MV Commission as a DRI.

Mr. Seidman did not think it made sense to make the parking lot as a DRI, because it would “hamstring” any future plans. Mr. Stephenson understood Mr. Seidman, and the possibility that the DRI designation would upset a good number of individuals, but they could not forget that the proposal was directly impacting the parking lot was a DRI, and impacting the traffic flow in and around the area.  He felt the proposal was not in the town’s best interest. Mr. Seidman could not support referring the parking lot to the MV Commission as a DRI.

Mr. Peak was concerned with the process, noting that the applicant had the professional staff and ample funds to wear down a town with limited resources. In such situations the MV Commission can be a valuable resource.  Mr. Seidman acknowledged.

Mr. Seidman indicated that the MV Commission’s and applicant’s traffic consultants had both reported that the proposed expansion would only generate a marginal increase in traffic. They could not attach blame for the town’s existing traffic woes on the applicant’s proposal.

Mr. Stephenson referred to the draft letter he had prepared for the Board, and an excerpt from his letter stating that the applicant was not at fault for the existing traffic condition.  He did not think there was a “real” solution to the traffic congestion at Five Corners, Union Street, etc., but that the applicant’s proposal could just be the catalyst to get the town to address a problem that has existed for decades.

Mr. Peak understood the applicant; Stop & Shop has offered to conduct a traffic study, but that the Board of Selectmen has not made a decision.  Mr. Stephenson indicated that they couldn’t ignore the traffic issues, but he agreed that they shouldn’t deny the proposed expansion.  In regards to the building, he acknowledged that the applicant had modified the design so that the supermarket loosely adapted to the overall architecture in the area. He insisted that the proposal had to be considered within the context of the parking lot, which was a public space, a gathering space, and contained a shared-use path.

Mr. Stephenson expressed disappointment at the parking committee’s last meeting, where the applicant’s consultants produced a plan that essentially paved over the entire lot, eliminating the comfort station just to add a truck route and extra parking. The design was never recommended or endorsed by the committee.  He and Mr. Lee have designed plans adding public and landscaped areas on the north and east sides of the parking lot.

In meetings prior to the last and in the letters he has written on representing the Board’s point of view regarding the parking lot was that it had to serve the entire business community, and expand the shared-use path so that the access along the north side, the Union Street Mall and the Capawock Theatre were linked to one another, and provided access to the SSA.   The plan before the Committee was the complete opposite.  Mr. Seidman inquired if Mr. Stephenson had the plan available. Mr. Stephenson replied in the negative.  The plan they thought they were going to review earlier this evening did not exist, which led to another cancellation by Mr. Grande.  Mr. Lee had not heard from the town if they’ve scheduled another meeting, and learned that the Board of Selectmen had not extended the time frame or re-appointed any of the committee members.

Mr. Stephenson thought the committee had a have access to a secretary and consultant to complete their mandate, or consider working under the auspices of the Planning Board.
Mr. Aldrin thought the committee was being ignored. Mr. Lee felt ‘offended’.  Mr. Stephenson noted that the committee should be given the opportunity to meet to discuss the parking plan design, and advocated asking the MV Commission to postpone the hearing on the 23rd of January 2014 to a later date to give them time to discuss the proposal.

Mrs. Doble thought the committee’s composition was odd, and did not understand why the Board of Selectmen wouldn’t hire an independent consultant to present the members ideas.  It undermined the committee, and rendered it dysfunctional.  Mr. Stephenson agreed.  

Mr. Lee shared his conversations with Mr. Israel and Mr. Krystal about the parking committee’s status as an advisory board, and with Mr. Grande as Chairman of the parking lot design committee. Mr. Lee expressed disappointment and frustration at Mr. Grande as the committee’s chairman.  Often times committee members were not allowed to speak to comment on their ideas or to present alternatives. Mr. Lee indicated he was denied the ability to present his work.

Mr. Seidman thought the conversation should be continued at their next meeting, at which time they could present the applicant’s design, Mr. Lee’s presentation and the committee member’s comments.  Mr. Stephenson appreciated Mr. Lee’s comments, and understood his frustration, especially when he was never given the opportunity to demonstrate his work. Mr. Seidman understood, and thought they could place the committee members on the agenda.

Mr. Stephenson reiterated that the Planning Board should prepare a statement stating their position on the proposal for the MV Commission. However, given that they only had next week, the night before the hearing to discuss the proposal, he recommended asking the MV Commission to continue the hearing so that both the Planning Board and the Municipal Parking Design Committee can issue a statement of support or not, and a recommendation for the parking lot.
Mr. Seidman did not think it was fair to the applicant, since Stop& Shop’s representatives and consultants had to travel a distance to come to the island.  Mr. Peak understood, and mentioned that the public hearing process had been continued a number of times to accommodate the applicant for various reasons. He added that they also had to acknowledge the fact that the municipal parking lot was no longer a part of the proposal, so that the MV Commission may not consider the issue a sufficient reason to consider a request for a continuation. On the other hand, Mr. Peak agreed with Mr. Lee’s comment earlier in the evening that the applicant did not have the right to presume they had the right to drive their delivery trucks over the town parking lot, since Norton Lane was not a road.  Stop & Shop in addition had a right to access their property from a public road (Water Street), unless the MV Commission prohibited them.  Mrs. Larsen asked Mr. Peak if he would enter his comments into the MV Commission’s hearing on January 23, 2014. Mr. Hodgson thought about the applicant’s access, noting that without access on Water Street, their only means of access was the corner of Cromwell and Norton St. It would explain their parking design.

Mr. Lee inquired if the applicant and Board of Selectmen can grant an easement or agree on a design without the town’s vote.  He asked the Board if they had received his email with his plans. Mr. Peak was unable to open the file.  Mrs. Larsen indicated that she had could not open the file. Mr. Lee explained that he sent a zipped file. The board secretary offered to make a few hard copies for Mrs. Larsen and the board.

Mr. Lee recalled Ms. Scott made a comment at the last hearing to the effect that the applicant would not be able to control or manage the traffic in the area despite the applicant’s traffic consultant’s (Randi Hart) recommendations for mitigation.  The local newspaper reporter’s (Dan Greenbaum) article supported Ms. Scott’s comment, noting however minimal the increase was projected; it would still not address the traffic congestion. Mr. Lee’s calculated the traffic impact and noted that there would be significant changes in the traffic pattern.

Additional discussions ensued with this regard, and Mr. Stephenson recalled the public comment at the MV Commission hearing, in which the public clearly wanted to see Stop & Shop expand, but not at the scale presented. He felt the proposal offered them the catalyst to make the changes they need to make to address the traffic. Mr. Stephenson thought it was the deal breaker, unless they could find a better design.

Additional discussions ensued, and Mr. Stephenson inquired if the Planning Board was definitely meeting next week. Mr. Seidman assured him that the Board members had agreed to meet next week at which time they will discuss the applicant’s proposal and the parking lot committee’s plans.  Mr. Stephenson added that he wanted to discuss the Planning Board’s letter to the MV Commission requesting a continuation of Stop & Shop’s hearing.

Mr. Stephenson indicated that he was not in favor of the proposal, but would reconsider, pending the parking lots re-design.

Mr. Lee, Mr. Hodsdon and Mr. Seidman departed at the conclusion of the discussions.

3. Tisbury Wastewater Planning Committee
RE: Build-out projections

Mr. Seidman informed Mrs. Loberg that the board secretary managed to obtain the data for the last couple of years, but was not able to enter the information in the database she had created for their build-out projects.

Mr. Peak reminded the board that Mrs. Loberg had asked for the information to see if their projections remained valid.  Mr. Seidman suspected that they remained the same. Mr. Peak thought it was important to verify whether the new data would substantiate their impressions about the areas in which they’d like to see development encouraged, discouraged or kept in check.

Mrs. Doble inquired how they planned to encourage growth. Mr. Peak replied that it would be a combination of regulations and remediation (central sewer). Mr. Stephenson indicated that there were areas in town where they’d like to see infill development and affordable housing (40R developments).


1. Kenneth A. Barwick, Building Inspector
RE: Mary J Goethals, 25 Geothals Way  (enforcement)

2.  MV Commission
A.  10 January 2014 Extended Meeting Schedule
B. 22 January 2014 (1PM) – Planning Session of Pre-Disaster Mitigation (Assessment & Mitigation Actions)

3. Quinlan Publishing
RE: Zoning Bulletin, 25 December 2013

PRO FORM        Meeting opened, conducted and closed in due form at 9:15 P.M.   
                        (m/s/c  5/0/0)          
Respectfully submitted;
Patricia V. Harris, Secretary

APPROVAL:       Approved and accepted as official minutes;

______________          _________________________
Date                    L. Anthony Peak