February 27, 2008 - 7:30 PM


Chairman Ian Murray called the meeting to order at 7: 30 p.m.


Clerk Linda McCabe called the roll.  Chairman Ian Murray – present, Robert Park - present, Patrick Hanehan - present, Paul Griffen –absent, Laurie Griffen – absent, Ralph Pascucci- absent, Robert McConnell- present, Alternate Jennifer Koval- present. 


Also attending: Town Engineer Ken Martin, James Vianna, James & Elena Grotto, Gilbert VanGuilder, Mary Field, and Clarence Fosdick.  (sign-in sheet is on file in the Minute Book).  


Due to the absence of several Board members, Chairman Ian Murray elevated Alternate member Jennifer Koval to full voting status.


Approval of Minutes: A motion was made by Chairman Ian Murray, seconded by  Robert McConnell, to accept the minutes of January 23, 2008 as written.  Chairman Ian Murray – aye, Robert Park – aye, Patrick Hanehan – aye, Paul Griffen – absent, Laurie Griffen – absent, Robert McConnell – aye, Ralph Pascucci – absent, Jennifer Koval – aye. Approved 5 - 0.


Order of Business:


Renewable Special Use Permit


James and Elena Grotto

946 Rt. 29

Saratoga Springs, NY  12866

S/B/L 156-1-24 Rural Residential


This Special Use Permit was originally granted 11/24/04, for retail sales.


James and Elena Grotto appeared before the Board, at the Board’s request, concerning their renewable Special Use Permit.  Chairman Ian Murray explained that their past Special Use Permit was up for renewal and Zoning Officer Gil Albert went to see if things were done in compliance with the past renewal conditions. He flagged those things which were not in compliance, and that is why the Board has asked them here tonight.  Chairman Ian Murray stated that according to the Grotto’s conversation with Zoning Officer Gil Albert, there are some things the Grotto’s will be doing this spring.  Elena Grotto agreed.  She explained they had planned to put in the new apron last fall, but financially it wasn’t feasible.  They will get it done this spring, moving it back the requested 20 feet; also they want to replace the fence with a stone wall and if they are unable to do so, they will move the fence back about 2-2 ˝ feet.  James Grotto added they plan to blacktop where the new garage is and will have the new apron done at that time.  Chairman Ian Murray stated the parking in the back can be reworked a bit; they can move it to the west property line a little, perhaps have the vehicles face that direction then they can back out easier.  James Grotto agreed.  A discussion continued between the Board and the Grotto’s on ways to improve parking and entering and exiting the property.  Chairman Ian Murray told the Grotto’s that they always do a good job with their property improvements.  James Grotto asked if they would need a building permit to put a small 3 foot porch on the new building to help prevent customers from driving right up to the building.  Chairman Ian Murray responded he should contact Zoning Officer Gil Albert concerning that.  Chairman Ian Murray asked when the Board can expect the work to be completed and James Grotto answered by June 1st, 2008.  James Grotto asked if all is in compliance in June, would the Board consider making their permit a permanent one.  Chairman Ian Murray stated he should let us know once the work is complete, and we will have Zoning Officer Gil Albert inspect it.  Once the inspection is completed, the renewable date will be June, and if all is in compliance the Board will make this permanent.    Returning




Robert E. and Jan A. Park

57 Trombley Rd.

Stillwater, NY  12170

S/B/L 193.-1-23.111 Rural District 2


Returning Applicant proposes to subdivide 5.89+/- acres from a 56.80 acre parcel on the east side of Trombley Rd., to sell for a single family residential dwelling. Public Hearing


Robert E. Park recused himself from the Board and moved to Applicant status. 


James Vianna appeared before the Board on behalf of Robert and Jan Park.  He stated the Applicants have a 5.89+/- lot they want to subdivide from the main property. It is on the easterly side of Trombley Rd. in the rural district; in compliance with zoning, including 300 feet of frontage. Perc tests and test pits have been done with three pages of engineering and driveway details by Dave Myers, notes have been added, corner set etc.  Chairman Ian Murray mentioned to Town Engineer Ken Martin that he was looking at the driveway details and the specifications were if over 200 feet it was 50,000 PSI and Town Engineer Ken Martin responded no, it was 50,000 lb. truck load.  Chairman Ian Murray would like the language added that it is to support a 50,000 lb. truck and James Vianna agreed.  Chairman Ian Murray stated aside from that, it is complete.  Town Engineer Ken Martin stated the perc tests are on there too.  James Vianna stated Dave Myers did the tests and the soils are good but not enough depth; so it is a raised septic system.  Chairman Ian Murray stated it is all detailed out and Town Engineer Ken Martin said Dave did a good job.  Chairman Ian Murray asked if the Board had any more questions for this application, there were none. 


Proof of Notice having been furnished by newspaper on February 17, 2008, Chairman Ian Murray opened the Public Hearing at 7:43 p.m.  No interested parties came forward. Chairman Ian Murray closed the Public Hearing at 7:44 p.m.


Patrick Hanehan read the short form EAF, which was completed by the Board.  Chairman Ian Murray made a motion and Patrick Hanehan seconded, to accept the documents as presented and to declare the SEQR review complete and to make a Negative Declaration.  Chairman Ian Murray – aye, Robert Park – recused, Laurie Griffin – absent, Patrick Hanehan – aye, Paul Griffen – absent, Robert McConnell – aye, Ralph Pascucci – absent, Jennifer Koval – aye. Carried 4-0





Chairman Ian Murray made a motion and Patrick Hanehan seconded to approve the subdivision.  Chairman Ian Murray – aye, Robert Park – recused, Laurie Griffin – absent, Patrick Hanehan – aye, Paul Griffen – absent, Robert McConnell – aye, Ralph Pascucci – absent, Jennifer Koval – aye.  Carried 4-0 Granted


*Board Member Robert Park rejoined the Board.


Sketch Plan


Anna M. Macica

1124 Rt. 29

Schuylerville, NY  12871

S/B/L 156-3-12 Rural Residential


Applicant proposes to subdivide a 2+ acre parcel, with the existing house at the center, from a 23+/- acre farm parcel.  This parcel is located at the northwest corner intersection of Rt. 29 and Grange Hall Rd.


James Vianna appeared on behalf of the Applicant.  James Vianna explained he hasn’t surveyed this yet but was here for the conceptual plan.  The Applicant would like to separate Mom’s house from the farm since they are incorporating the farm.  The proposed parcel already has an existing house, septic, well, driveway, plenty of road frontage and site distance. Mr. Vianna stated he needs to make it a zoning compliant lot in the rural residential district.  Chairman Ian Murray stated since it is an existing house, the soil engineering, water quality, septic and well are already there.  Mr. Vianna needs only to identify it on the survey and plot it out.  Mr. Vianna said he will probably have it surveyed in the next couple of weeks.  The Board brought up some concerns about the driveway onto Rt. 29.  Mr. Vianna stated it goes through the smaller lot and into the barnyard area then onto Grange Hall Rd. so they already have a driveway coming in there off Grange Hall.  They are in the process of dismantling some of the barns.  He thinks they’ll be in any day with site plans on that.  Chairman Ian Murray stated we have a Special Use Permit with them for the Corn Maze across the road.  They since have extended that with a roadside stand on the other side of the road and a greenhouse. We think they need to incorporate that into the Special Use Permit or start another Special Use Permit for that, due to the traffic they generate with these businesses.  Town Engineer Ken Martin questioned the location of the roadside stand believing it was on the other side of the road and Chairman Ian Murray responded that was correct, it has been moved.  He also stated it seems the seasonal operations are on the south side and the more annuals and retail work is on the north side.  Chairman Ian Murray thinks they need to get a sketch plan going for a Special Use Permit, identify the buildings, and identify the parking and all that.  The Board doesn’t want to start crowding that corner and potentially creating a situation there.  Chairman Ian Murray asked Mr. Vianna to let the Applicant know this would be a good time to take care of this as we continue with this subdivision.  Mr. Vianna stated the first step is to separate Mom’s house from the farm parcel.  Chairman Ian Murray stated the Board needs a complete application and a completed survey.  Once we are in receipt of those, we will advertise for a Public Hearing with notification going to the Town of Northumberland, as well as the County, due to this being on Rt. 29.  Returning







Arthur Kemmet, Applicant

183 River Road

Schuylerville, NY  12871

S/B/L 209.13-1-17 Conservancy


Returning Applicant proposes a three lot subdivision on a 22.91+/- acre parcel situated primarily between NYS Rt. 4 and River Road.  The parcel straddles Rte 4 and has additional frontage on Wilbur Road. 


Gil Van Guilder appeared before the Board on behalf of the Applicant.  Mr. VanGuilder brought new revised maps and handed them out to Board members.  He explained that his client might have moved ahead of the subdivision regulations of the Town of Saratoga after talking with the Zoning Officer.  Mr. Kemmet had been contemplating conveying a portion of land immediately adjacent to the new back property on River Rd.  The neighbor’s parcel was originally 9,935 sq. ft., their garage was right up against the property line and they contacted Mr. Kemmet and he agreed to sell them an “L” shaped parcel which made their parcel deeper in the rear by 35 ft. and wider along the road.  Mr. Kemmet thought lot-line adjustments were not subject to Planning Board review which was a mistake on his part.  He misunderstood the directions he got from Zoning Officer, Gil Albert.  Mr. Albert did not tell him that it was non-action by this Board; he told Mr. Kemmet the lot-line should be no problem and Mr. Kemmet took that as not needing to go before the Board.  Mr. VanGuilder then stated that Mr. Kemmet filed the deed of conveyance and the consolidation deed with the County, and Mr. VanGuilder verified that with Carol Holly at Real Property in the Saratoga County office. Both deeds were filed on Jan. 11, 2008.  Mr. Kemmet is proposing another lot-line adjustment along River Rd. to add a 10,492 sq. ft. parcel to other land he owns, which has a single family home on it and was not part of the previous action because it was on a separate deed.  It would make that lot 27,251 sq. ft..  The remaining lots all have frontage:  Lot 1 has frontage on Wilbur Rd.; on the old map lot 1 did not meet requirements, this one does.  Lot 2 and 3 both have frontage on Rt. 4 but now the driveway proposal is to come off Wilbur Rd. along the westerly line of Lot 1 and then it would be a shared driveway back to the common line between Lot 2 and 3; those lot sizes are 6.6 acres and 13.1 acres.  There are some substantial changes on this plan due to their work with the Army Corp. of Engineers this past summer.  A wetland area was added that was not previously flagged, they set up the 50 ft. buffer area all around it with no encroachments.  That is one of the reasons we decided to make this lot-line adjustment.  We do have a jurisdictional determination from the Army Corp. of Engineers, and as the proposal is right now, there are no impacts to Army Corp. wetlands.  DEC wetlands are along Rt. 4, and those buffers are protected along that area and we are not proposing any violations or encroachments into those buffers.  This covers the changes made.  Mr. VanGuilder showed the Board that the date changes and all updates are stacked on the left side of the map for a complete chronology starting with October 2006. Mr. VanGuilder stated he did not expect a lengthy delay with the Army Corp.  They asked us to wait until they had their new guidelines in place and that was in the fall; they then completed their review and gave their determination.  Hopefully this brings the Board back up to speed on this application.

Chairman Ian Murray stated he spoke with both Zoning Officer Gil Albert and with Mr. Kemmet concerning Mr. Kemmet’s filing of an ‘illegal subdivision’.  He told Mr. Kemmet it was illegal and Zoning Officer Gil Albert did inform Mr. Kemmet it was not the procedure or policy of the Town, that it does have to go before the Board so Real Property makes sure they file the consolidated deed and map and everything.  In the interim we did end up getting the consolidated deed both from Mr. Kemmet and from Peter Rielly, attorney for the Nuebeck’s.  Chairman Ian Murray also stated he didn’t get to do a site visit, but knows there was an unoccupied house or building and is wondering where that existing building is.  Mr. VanGuilder stated it was a mobile home and it has been removed.  Chairman Ian Murray noted they need to do a consolidated deed on this part of the action.  Mr. VanGuilder agreed. Chairman Ian Murray shared his concerns with the lot and stated he does not like the relocated driveway layout or the location.  He told Mr. VanGuilder that they have used shared driveways a couple of times in the Town and in those rare instances they had enough frontage for those specific lots to work.  In this case even though there is frontage on Rt. 4, it is not useable frontage for a driveway so he doesn’t think this is the best planning practice for this.  Chairman Ian Murray stated he doesn’t know what the balance of the Board thinks, but what Mr. Kemmet is trying to do is maximize the density on the project and run an easement in there for a shared driveway just to get a couple more lots in there.  Mr. VanGuilder explained how they have changed the design but this layout is not that much different than the previous layout with the use of the common driveway.  Chairman Ian Murray said he understands that, but now the layout has a negative effect on the new homeowners; he indicated on the map which lots would be affected.  And again, yes, there is frontage on Rt. 4 but it is not useable.  Chairman Ian Murray stated if he had to vote on it tonight, he would not vote positive on it.  Town Engineer Ken Martin looked up the flood plain and the 10 yr. storm is at 94 ft.  He believes Al Knapp came up with that.  Mr. VanGuilder agreed with him, and believes the septic systems are located close to previous locations but is not absolutely sure.  He will check into that and verify that the information is up-to-date and get a copy to the Board. Town Engineer Ken Martin also looked it up in D.O.H. and previously phoned them on it, and it is a 10 yr. flood level they have to be above.  Chairman Ian Murray questioned Town Engineer Ken Martin if he would be comfortable sending this, after Lansing does the design, to D.O.H. too?   Town Engineer Ken Martin has no problem with doing that.  Chairman Ian Murray questioned Mr. VanGuilder if these proposed lots will have river rights and Mr. VanGuilder stated that one lot will retain about 100 FT. of frontage; it also has a small existing parcel with it.  Chairman Ian Murray stated this application has been idle for quite some time, so if we go to Public Hearing next month we should notify Stillwater due to Local Law 239.  Board member Robert Park stated it looks like the septics are surrounded by wetlands. Mr. VanGuilder responded they will be designed to D.O.H. standards, as Town Engineer Ken Martin stated earlier, and we will go by their requirements. Conversation continued between the Board and Mr. VanGuilder.  Board member Robert Park does not like this for the same reasons as Chairman Ian Murray.  Conversation continued on the pros and cons of shared driveways.  Chairman Ian Murray noted the Board did not get updated plans from Lansing in regards to the driveway and they will have to have that driveway engineered.  The Board will need those updates, and the Applicant will also need to certify installation of that driveway.   He also stated they have walked it and he thinks everyone knows there are serious concerns with the flood plain and the soil conditions there; it’s almost hydric-soil.  Chairman Ian Murray stated again he does not like the plan, does not think this is good planning practice and would vote no if voted on tonight.  Town Engineer Ken Martin noted the Board may want the Applicant to go to the extent of putting in a road sub-base and make the width at least a rural road width on that driveway.  Chairman Ian Murray agreed with this due to the conditions out there and the need for emergency vehicles to get in and out.   Chairman Ian Murray stated if the Applicant wants to move forward, we can hold a Public Hearing for next month.  Mr. VanGuilder continued discussion with the Board on property access, possibly changing the lot-line adjustment application, possibly applying for a wetland disturbance permit to cross over the wetlands, much like in the first application.  Chairman Ian Murray felt it would be a better situation than to leave that existing lot-line as is.  Mr. VanGuilder agreed and noted the point is well taken.  Mr. VanGuilder thanked the Board and said they will look this over and see what they can do. 


Chairman Ian Murray stated that due to Mr. VanGuilder’s explanation, the Board now understands what happened with Mr. Kemmet’s lot-line adjustment with the Nuebeck’s, and the paper work is filed, but we will leave that in suspension until we figure out what to do with the shared driveway etc.. Mr. VanGuilder questioned if this gets held up a bit, can we take care of the Kemmet/Nuebeck action separately and Chairman Ian Murray stated that if it does lag a bit, perhaps we can accelerate that action. Returning


Old Business:  Chairman Ian Murray questioned if the Clerk had all the information on the Board members who attended the county training conference and classes.  The Clerk stated yes, all that information is in the book.


Board member Patrick Hanehan questioned, in regards to subdivisions with shared driveways, if the land has to be able to support individual driveways if a shared driveway doesn’t work out.  Chairman Ian Murray stated no, the shared driveway is a written legal document that is accompanied with the deed and they have to live with it.  Town Engineer Ken Martin added that typically we have tried to set it up so they go along the lot-line but doesn’t think it is a requirement.  Chairman Ian Murray explained in the two cases we used shared driveways, they were used as tools to limit mailbox sprawl and to enhance the number of lots put in, this one here is for density-almost like creating keyhole lots with no frontage. 


New Business:  


Next meeting will be held March 26, 2008.


A motion to adjourn was made by Robert McConnell, seconded by Patrick Hanehan at 8:23 p.m.  Chairman Ian Murray-aye, Robert Park-aye, Patrick Hanehan-aye, Paul Griffen-absent, Laurie Griffen-absent, Robert McConnell – aye, Ralph Pascucci – absent, Jennifer Koval-aye.  Carried 5-0



Respectfully submitted,


Linda McCabe

Planning Clerk


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