TOWN OF SARATOGA
ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS MINUTES
October 25, 2004
Chairman Stephen Bodnar called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.
Chairman Stephen Bodnar explained the Rules of the Board.
Clerk Ruth Drumm called the roll: Chairman Stephen Bodnar – present, Thomas Carringi – present, Barbara Faraone – absent, Clifford Hanehan – present, Joyce Waldinger – present, David Hall – present, James Burke – absent, and alternate Robert McConnell – present.
Also present: Zoning Officer Robert Hathaway, Jeff Davis, Peter Czelowalnik, Don Adkins, Connie Natale, Vince Sleasman, Donna Malin, Terry & George Duval, Edna Nash, Nancy Demick, Dennis Kagel, Ted Munn, Laurie Gregorek, Leon Reed, Denis Sheeran, Lisa Hall, Thomas Vandemark, Jennifer Ferriss, Wayne White, and Michael Letale.
Approval of Minutes: All board members present had read the minutes of the
September 27th, and the October 12th, 2004 special meeting. A motion was made by Joyce Waldinger and seconded by David Hall to accept the minutes of the September 27th and October 12th, 2004 meetings as written. Chairman Stephen Bodnar – aye, Joyce Waldinger – aye, Thomas Carringi – aye, David Hall – aye, Barbara Faraone – absent, Clifford Hanehan – aye, James Burke – absent, and alternate Robert McConnell – aye. Carried 6 - 0
Order of Business:
Case # 04-22 Michael Giovanone, applicant, Jonathan Lapper, Atty.
5 Compion Lane
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
Lake Commercial District, S/B/L 193.06-1-2 Property location: 1427 Route 9P
Applicant is seeking an area variance for lack of the required frontage at 1427 Route 9P and a variance for multiple uses on one lot in order to construct 8 multi-family dwellings, totaling 30 units, on 8.88 +/- acres. Postponed – Did not appear.
Case # 04-21 Jennifer Ferriss & Wayne White
17 Chestnut Street
Schuylerville, NY 12871
S/B/L 157.62-1-15 Rural Residential
Jennifer Ferriss and Wayne White addressed the board seeking a front setback variance to build a 6’ open-air porch on the front of their house at 17 Chestnut Street. Jennifer Ferriss presented the board with a neighbor notification letter signed by Susanna Murphy and
Brian Myers. Both neighbors stated that they had no objections to the addition of the open-air porch. She stated that the porch will be in line with others on the street where
most houses are closer to the road than theirs. The required setback is 40’ and with the porch, they will have a 28’ setback. Chairman Stephen Bodnar asked for Zoning Officer Robert Hathaway’s opinion and he had no objection to the porch.
Proof of Notice having been furnished, Chairman Stephen Bodnar opened the Public Hearing: No one spoke for or against the proposal.
Clifford Hanehan made a motion to grant the 12’ front setback variance for a 33.5’ x 6’ open-air porch on the front of their home at 17 Chestnut Street. Robert McConnell seconded it. Chairman Stephen Bodnar – aye, Joyce Waldinger – aye, Thomas Carringi – aye, David Hall – aye, Barbara Faraone – absent, Clifford Hanehan – aye, James Burke – absent, and alternate Robert McConnell – aye. Carried 6 - 0
108 Franklin Beach Road
S/B/L 193.5-1-29 Lake Residential District
Vincent Sleasman addressed the board seeking variances for setbacks, building coverage, and lot area to add decks and porches onto his home at 108 Franklin Beach Road. He explained that on the roadside of his home he has planned to add a 16’ wide by 6’ deep open-air porch with the roof sloping off the existing roof and a 4’ deep by 16’ wide, open – air deck. The setback is presently 40’ and with the addition of the porch it will be 34’. He explained further that on the lakeside of his home he has planned to add a 10’ by 12’ screened in porch with a roof sloping off the existing roof and an open-air deck, 22’ wide by 4.5’ to 12’ from the house. These additions would increase the building coverage to 36.6%, up from the present 28%. Vincent Sleasman gave Chairman Stephen Bodnar the neighbor notification letter that he gave to neighbor Patricia Butler, of 110 Franklin Beach Rd., and he added that there is a vacant lot on the other side of him. Patricia Butler wrote the board that she cannot support the addition of a screened in porch on the lakeside because it would significantly cut-off /limit her view from her deck and lakeside yard as her house sits further back than his. She also wrote that she has no objection to the roadside deck and porch. Vincent Sleasman stated that he doesn’t see it as a significant obstruction of her view, but agreed that it limits it some. Vincent Sleasman noted that trees could also obstruct her view. Chairman Stephen Bodnar then explained that State Law prevents a person from planting trees that will obstruct a view. Vincent Sleasman then asked if he could put up a fence and Zoning Officer Robert Hathaway told him that he could put one on the property line but the good side must face the neighbor’s property. Clifford Hanehan suggested a hardship has not been proven and a way to minimize the impact on his neighbor ’s view would be to reverse the lakeside plan to put the open-air deck on her side and the screened in porch on the other. Vincent Sleasman stated that he would rather try for the variances as is, and if he is denied then possibly change the plan.
Proof of Notice having been furnished Chairman Stephen Bodnar opened the Public Hearing: No one spoke for or against the proposal.
Clifford Hanehan made a motion to deny the variances because of the neighbor’s concerns with the obstruction of her view. After some board discussion, Clifford Hanehan withdrew his motion and the board suggested that Vincent Sleasman talk with
his neighbor to see if a solution could be reached and return next month for the variances needed. TABLED
Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems d/b/a Cingular Wireless
Represented by Hiscock & Barclay, Jeffrey Davis
221 South Warren St.
Syracuse, NY 13221
S/B/L 156.-4-7 Rural Residential District Project Location: 168 Hayes Rd.
Jeffrey Davis addressed the board seeking a use variance to construct a 150-foot monopole telecommunications facility at 168 Hayes Rd. Telecommunications Towers are excluded from the Rural Residential District. He explained that Cingular Wireless is upgrading their network in this area as required by their Federal Communications
Commission (FCC) license. The area that they are trying to improve to have adequate and reliable signal coverage is along Route 29 east from the City of Saratoga Springs. Jeffrey Davis explained that as a public utility they are not governed by the proof of “unnecessary hardship” requirements and cannot be excluded from any district where the utility has proven a need for its facilities. The need is apparent, as there aren’t any telecommunication towers in the area and service is poor. The placement of the tower needs to fit into the existing network of towers. He explained that the coverage is about four to five miles out from the tower and that matter, such as buildings, trees, or hills are the biggest deterrents to reception. Chairman Stephen Bodnar asked Jeffrey Davis to identify other properties in the Rural District that may be suitable sites.
Proof of Notice having been furnished Chairman Stephen Bodnar opened the Public Hearing. The following nearby residents posed questions of Jeffrey Davis:
Don Adkins, 152 Hayes Rd., asked if the tower would be shared with other providers? Jeffrey Davis answered yes, and that every provider would need an antenna on the monopole. He also noted that a balloon test, which consists of balloons floating 150’ up in the air, would be conducted and photos will be taken from designated locations in the town to determine its visibility from those locations.
Laurie Gregorek, 146 Hayes Rd., spoke against the proposal.
Lisa Hall, 3 Elizabeth Lane, asked how the tower would effect property values and she was told that the studies are inconclusive. She then asked about the amount of property taxes that would be paid. Jeffrey Davis stated that the increase in property taxes is paid by Cingular and that the town assessor determines the assessed value.
Terry Duval, 2 Elizabeth Ln., questioned how much of the 43.08 +/- acres would be used by the telecommunications facility? Jeffrey Davis stated that only a 70’ by 70’ fenced in area would be used. She then inquired who would benefit from the tower and she was told that only Cingular customers would benefit. It was noted that the tower would not help the Village of Schuylerville’s reception or along Route 4, but 911 calls would benefit. Terry Duval pointed out that over the last couple of years the project area has become much more residential. It was mentioned that there are cell towers in Stillwater, at the air base, and there’s a silo type tower at Lake Lonely.
Denis Sheeran, 3 Elizabeth Ln., asked if there was any documentation that towers don’t present a health hazard? Jeffrey Davis replied that per the 1996 Telecommunications Act, the site is well below the allowable exposure limit guidelines. He then asked if there
are any reports on existing towers that state the surrounding neighbors love them? Jeffrey Davis replied no, but they love the service.
Dennis Kagel, 147 Hayes Rd., wondered how the towers could be camouflaged and he added that he would prefer not to see a fake Christmas tree. Jeffrey Davis explained that many designs would be shown to the Planning Board when it gets to that stage. He also noted that the monopole would be 150’ and would probable have multiple users. Jeffrey Davis added that an 11’ x 20’ shelter would be within the 70’ x 70’ fenced in area. There would be a separate access road that will use the existing gravel drive by the storage building and go further from there. The utilities will be underground from Hayes Road.
Terry Duval, 2 Elizabeth Ln., asked if it would impact telephone or cable reception? She was told no, because each uses its own wavelength. If any problems were to occur, they would remedy them quickly.
Donna Malin, 104 Oak Tree Dr., wondered if this would increase the chances of other businesses coming into this residential area. Jeffrey Davis replied that since this is a public utility it probably would not set a precedent for non public utility type businesses.
Zoning Officer Robert Hathaway, 345 County Rd. 68, spoke against the proposal since our regulations specifically exclude telecommunication towers from all districts except the Rural District.
Connie Natale, 161 Hayes Rd., voiced concerns on how it will look and the service distance and asked for clarification on where the gravel driveway would be. Jeffrey Davis replied that the gravel driveway would be to the right of the red barn.
Chairman Stephen Bodnar closed the public hearing at 9:40 p.m.
Chairman Stephen Bodnar introduced a motion to table the proposal and asked that Jeffrey Davis present the board with other available sites in the Rural District. Cliff Hanehan seconded this. Chairman Stephen Bodnar – aye, Joyce Waldinger – aye, Thomas Carringi – aye, David Hall – aye, Barbara Faraone – absent, Clifford Hanehan – aye, James Burke – absent, and alternate Robert McConnell – aye. Carried 6 – 0 TABLED
Old Business: None
New Business: None
The next regular meeting will be November 22, 2004 at 7:30 p.m. It was noted that there will not be a December meeting.
A motion to adjourn was made at 10:00 p.m. by Joyce Waldinger and seconded by Cliff Hanehan. Chairman Stephen Bodnar – aye, Joyce Waldinger – aye, Thomas Carringi – aye, David Hall – aye, Barbara Faraone – absent, Clifford Hanehan – aye, James Burke – absent, and alternate Robert McConnell – aye. Carried 6 - 0
Ruth L. Drumm, Clerk