Planning Board Minutes of August 6, 2014

                                    SULLIVAN PLANNING BOARD      
        Minutes of the Meeting of August 6, 2014

The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Chairman Steve Hamilton.  In addition to the chairman, members Stacy Glover, Laura Lewandowski, Ann Sweet, and Mark Smith were present.  Members Dave Jakway and Kevin Wheeler were absent.  Mark  Paquette represented the selectmen.

A motion (Lewandowski/Smith) to approve the minutes of the meeting of July 2 passed without dissent.

Driveway regulations
Selectman Laura Merrifield, based on the discussion at the July 2 meeting, had revised, for clarification, the language in Article V, paragraph 2, of the driveway regulations as amended at the meeting of the planning board on December 19, 2013.  The section deals with driveway permits and the requirements for and holding of escrow funds to cover the costs of paved aprons, when required.  A motion (Glover/Smith) to adopt the changes as distributed passed without dissent.  Thanks were extended to Mrs. Merrifield, and Chairman Hamilton asked Selectman Mark Paquette to request copies of the amended Driveway Regulations for planning board members.

Asked by the chairman about progress on completion of driveway aprons, Selectman Paquette said the usual provider/installer of aprons was overbooked so that town-constructed pavements would be delayed.

Master Plan
Vision statement:  Chairman Hamilton asked that in sentence #5, the following be inserted:  “on a Class V or better road.”

Chairman Hamilton delivered the Town Hall and Police updates written by Selectman Gary Patnode.

Chairman Hamilton set a completion date for the draft plan for the September or October planning board meetings.  Yet to finish are the Transportation chapter, the Community Services and Public Buildings chapter, and the Conclusion and Recommendations chapter.  The board has not yet decided whether to include a Capital Improvement Plan chapter, as appears in the 2005 edition.

Member reports
Mrs. Sweet outlined a presentation made by SWRPC staff member, Henry Underwood, to the selectmen at their August 4 meeting on a Culvert Assessment Project promoted by DES and DOT.  The project would assess all public stream and drainage crossings on town-owned and maintained roads, create a database and summary report of the assessments, including map and photographs, and submit the findings to DES Fluvial Erosion Hazards and River Geomorphic Assessment Program for geomorphic compatibility and aquatic organism passage rankings.  All of this would cost the town nothing, since it is part of the DOT budget aimed at reducing flooding on NH roads.  Of course, any action to ameliorate any conditions would be at town expense (although external funding sources may be available).  She reported that the selectmen asked a number of questions, including possible liability for not taking action on any problem noted.  Mr. Underwood promised to find the answer to this question.  Road Agent Randy Smith (Master Road Scholar) articulated concerns, based his experience.  For example, there have been long delays in wetlands permitting from DES when he has undertaken culvert replacements.  He reported that there are 250 stream crossings in the town, and he has plotted every one on a map.  He has been scheduling stream crossing improvements for a number of years, subject to the town’s limited fiscal resources.  He also spoke of the DES wanting very expensive materials ($30,000) for one culvert replacement when $5000 would cover the necessary materials.  He reiterated his concern for the fiscal limits to the town’s capacities for major actions.

The selectmen said they would consider all that Mr. Underwood had proposed and looked forward to his response to their questions, especially the one of liability.  

Selectman Paquette reported on the effort to effect cleanups of the five properties in town to which they had sent letters requiring cleanup.  Responses have been slow.

Before adjourning the meeting, Chairman Hamilton asked about Mr. Wheeler’s intentions about further participation on the planning board.  Mr. Smith said Mr. Wheeler has planned to submit a letter of resignation.  Chairman Hamilton asked Mr. Smith to submit the letter.  Mr. Wheeler’s participation will be missed, especially since he has brought to the board his experiences as a longtime resident of the town.

There being no further business, A motion was made (Lewandowski/Smith) to adjourn the meeting at 7:38 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Ann Sweet, Secretary