Sedgwick Planning Board Minutes
8 December 2015
Members present were Robert Jones, Chairman, Victor Smith, Peter Neill, David Carter, Michael Rossney, alternate Peter Atherton. Patricia Egan, absent. A quorum was present. Also present was Selectman Nelson Grindal. November minutes were accepted as amended.
Rossney enquired about individual email addresses for Planning Board members. The Selectmen have been previously advised of the request via letter; Grindal indicated he’d work on the issue.
Planning Board members were given copies of current Town ordinances. It was pointed out that the Board should also be provided with copies of the Town Wind Tower Ordinance. Barbara Grindle will be advised of the need.
Jones brought up the need to examine the Site Review Ordinance for corrections, additions, and clarifications for the improvement of the Ordinance. Neill indicated the Town C.E.O. should review the Ordinance and provide the Board with his recommendations. In this regard, Rossney asked what are the expectations for the Planning Board and said the Town Comprehensive Plan would provide a good outline. It was agreed that the Comprehensive Plan is good, requires updating, and once updated, would provide a current picture of Sedgwick. Neill pointed out that the Planning Board should advise the Selectmen on planning issues and that the Selectmen may implement those recommendations. Grindal noted that future Building Permits should contain more detail and specifics to the scope of the permit for the protection of both the Town and applicant.
All Board members agreed that in the past the Site Plan Review process has been problematic and that future reviews should follow the process as outlined in the Ordinance.
Neill pointed out that any changes to the Ordinance will have to be approved at a Town Meeting – most likely a Special Town Meeting.
Neill motioned that the Planning Board review the Ordinance for the Jan. 12, 2015 meeting, make appropriate changes, and finalize the edit for the Selectmen and Town approval. Seconded and approved.
Jones motioned to write a letter to the C.E. O. requesting his recommendations on improving the Ordinance. It was seconded and approved.
Neill asked who and how enforces the Ordinance? It should be made clear in the Ordinance.
Grindal indicated he has heard the Town has a reputation for not being business friendly and that the Board can help to counter that characterization by providing more assistance to building permit applicants thru the site plan review process. Neill suggested this was the job of the C.E.O.
Atherton suggested the Board might benefit from classes offered by the Maine Municipal Association. He will research the offerings and get back to the Board.
Grindal noted that Feb. 10, 2016 would be the latest to get any Ordinance amendments submitted for voter approval at the March Town meeting.
Jones suggested a letter be written to the Selectmen regarding their views on the purpose and mission of the Planning Board. It was agreed that it would be appropriate but probably unproductive as the Ordinance already spells out the duties and responsibilities. Rossney suggested the Comprehensive Plan be followed regarding the future “plan” of Sedgwick
Meeting adjourned at 8:20 pm.