BZA January 31, 2012 Sanders

The Newbury Township Board of Zoning Appeals public hearing was called to order by Mr. Tezeon Wong, acting Chairman, at 7:32 p.m. on January 31, 2012 with Board members, Chris Yeacker and alternates Ken Blair and Lou Tomsic present. Ms. Endres presented photos for board review. All in attendance who wished to speak at this hearing were duly sworn and asked when testifying to state their name and confirm being sworn in. Mr. Wong read the area variance request:
Martin M. Sanders requests an area variance to build a 1200 sq.ft. accessory building 15 ft. from the east side lot line (vs. Art. V, Sec. 505 req’d 30 ft.) at 11084 Bell Rd.
Mr. Wong asked the applicant to present his case. Mr. Sanders said that if he had to observe the 30 ft, side setback the building would be close to the middle of this narrow lot and encroach wetlands and the leech field and septic system. He had to install a new septic system that took up most of the back yard after he purchased the property. He needs this new storage building for his ’67 firebird (now stored at this fathers) and motorcycles and other recreational items. Only his wife parks in the present garage. He pointed out the leech field/septic areas on the screen.
Mr. Tomsic asked if the swampland ever dried up. Mr. Sanders said heavy rains drain to the (unbuildable) wetlands shared by the neighbors. He outlined the position of the floodplain and the driveway leading to the new steel building (Claridon Barns) constructed on a concrete slab floor. The steel building is less expensive than a pole building. He said he previously had to waterproof his basement. The steel building would have electric service and possibly a woodburner.
Mr. Yeacker explained that the building would not be in a flood zone as Newbury has no riparian setback rules. Mr. Wong asked if the building could be moved to a 20 ft. setback – Mr. Sanders said that would be too close to the leech field that must not be disturbed. Mr. Wong asked the board if they had any questions; there being none he opened the questions to the audience.
Mr. Ament, a neighbor across the street, asked why a building can’t be constructed over a leech field. Mr. Tomsic said the field works by evaporation so nothing can be built over it. Mr. Sanders said the steel building would be 24’ x 20’ x 16’ high. Mr. Ament asked why couldn’t the building be built next to the existing garage. Ms. Endres explained that garage was built last year and does not appear in the 2010 aerials. It is approximately 100 ft. from the road; nothing can be built in the front yard.
Discussion continued regarding the sketch showing the metal roof construction, life span, 20 yr warranty, size/location of garage & man doors, etc.
Mr. Wong said that the board should consider the narrow lot, the 100 year flood zone, the location of septic system and wetlands and asked the board to follow recommended procedure to establish the Findings of Fact prior to any motion.
1) The lot could yield a reasonable return without the variance however the owner needs additional storage, the location of which is severely restricted by septic/leech field system and wetlands.
2) The variance is substantial but restricted by topography/wetlands – no neighbor on this side is present at this hearing.
3) The essential character of the neighborhood would not be altered nor would adjoining properties suffer substantial detriment as a result of this variance – there are no encumbrances to the rear or side.
4) The variance would not adversely affect the delivery of government services.
5) The lot owner purchased the property without knowledge of the zoning restriction. He was required to replace the septic/leech field system after purchase.
6) The owner’s predicament could not feasibly be obviated without this variance as the back yard was the only replacement field area on this narrow 2.04 acre lot further restricted by wetlands severely limiting the location for the storage building.
7) The spirit and intent behind the zoning requirement would be observed and substantial justice done by granting the variance.
Ms. Endres confirmed that the Health Dept. determines the type of septic system. Mr. Tomsic explained the on-lot disposal if there is space and soils compatibility leaving aeration systems for smaller off-lot discharge.
Mr. Wong asked the board for additional comments or questions. There being no more questions, Mr. Wong called for a motion stating that a yes vote would grant the area variance as requested.
Ken Blair moved to grant Mr. Sanders variance as requested for the accessory building side setback; Chris Yeacker seconded the motion.

Ken Blair yes
Tezeon Wong yes
Chris Yeacker yes
Lou Tomsic yes

Mr. Wong informed the applicant his area variance was granted.

Mr. Wong read to the Appellant and audience, “Within 30 days after service of the minutes granting your request, if someone wishes to challenge this decision through the court, he or she may. The challenge could reverse or negate our decision. Mr. Wong informed the Appellant and the audience that the 30-day period commences with the Appellants’ signing receipt of the signed minutes. They will be mailed registered return receipt to the Appellant. All persons receiving notice of the hearing will receive copies of the minutes. At the time you receive your permit you must also comply with all other requirements of Newbury Township zoning”.
Mr. Wong adjourned the BZA hearing at 8:03 p.m. As the applicant left, Board members wished him good luck.

Marge Hrabak
Secretary