Minutes of April 7, 2010

Chairman Bob Switzer called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.  Present, in addition to the chairman, were members  Dave Jakway,  Laura Lewandowski,   Ann Sweet, and Selectmen‘s representative Cheryl Labadie.  Absent was Michelle Degree.  John Little, a prospective member, was also present.
Minutes of the meeting of March 3, 2009, were accepted as distributed.

Public hearing on application of Jim Forrest for approval of his site plan for a retail gun shop

Hearing on completeness of the application
Chairman Switzer reviewed one by one the submission requirements in the Site Plan Review regulations.  The following questions were raised:
Will the new light described in item 12 on the plat have a cap to reduce light pollution?
Will there be bathroom facilities?
How will guns be secured from illicit use?
If proposed addition to the building is to be used for storage of the body shop equipment, where will gun shop be housed?
How can there be room for parking 5 cars, given quantity of vehicles in the area at present?
Mr. Forrest responded that:
He can cap the light.
No bathroom facilities are required.  There was some discussion about whether such requirements in retail shops in Keene are city ordinances or state.  Mr. Jakway promised to do further research on the question.  Mr. Little offered his experience with the Sullivan Store:  bathroom facilities are only required where food is being served, not even where food is sold.  It was decided to assume that there is no state requirement.
Guns will all have trigger locks, which is the case at the Alstead Gun Shop.
The description of the location of the gun shop, its dimensions and its doors, will be added to the letter of intent.
The proposed parking area will be cleared of all vehicles, which are currently being stripped.
It was pointed out that, since the proposed building addition will be 960 feet square, a building permit will be required from the selectmen.

There being no further discussion, a motion (Switzer/Lewandowski) to declare the application complete passed without dissent.  The chairman declared the hearing on completeness closed.

Hearing on the merits of the application.
Abutters were invited to comment on the merits of the application. 
Harold Myers expressed his concern about traffic in that portion of Centre Street where vehicles speed.  Ruth Edson affirmed the speed and frequency of traffic but said it had been the same for 34 years and she did not expect the gun shop to increase the problem, which should be dealt with by more frequent patrolling by law enforcement.

Rosalie Myers declared her worry that persons with illegal intentions might be attracted to a gun shop in a rural area where they might find access to guns easier than in a big city.  Mr. Forrest explained the screening process required by federal regulations that precluded easy access to guns.  Every prospective buyer undergoes a background check.  Every gun is registered with a number linked to the buyer.  Mr. Little suggested that guns sold informally person to person are easier to obtain in an urban area.  Mrs. Edson offered the opinion that she respects Mr. Forrest’s judgment and expects him to be strict.

Mr. Jakway asked how ammunition would be handled.  Mr. Forrest said it would be stored on shelves.  Mr. Jakway recommended that Mr. Forrest speak with the fire chief about his plans.

The hearing on the merits closed at 8:05 p.m.

A motion (Labadie/Jakway) to approve the site plan application passed without dissent with the following stipulations:
Change the letter of intent to clarify the location of the gunshop within the existing garage bay (including dimensions and door locations);
Produce the FFL permit when it is received;
Shield the light put up to illuminate the parking area;
Notify the planning board when the site is ready for inspection;
Inform the fire chief of the shop plans.

Capital Improvement Planning
It was agreed to discuss the process of creating a CIP at the next meeting.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:45 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Ann Sweet, Secretary