All meeting minutes posted on the township website are unofficial minutes. Official copies of minutes may be obtained from the Planning/Zoning Department.

Minutes: April 28, 2021

Call to Order

Meeting was called to order by Chairman Theobald at 7:00 p.m. Meeting held via Zoom Webinar.

Statement of Compliance

Pursuant to the Open Public Meetings Act, adequate notice of this regular meeting has been provided to the public and the press on January 18, 2021 by delivering to the press such notice and posting same at the municipal building.

Roll Call  Also Present
Mayor’s Designee Diane WexlerP Steve Tombalakian, Board Attorney
Craig WilliamsP Cory Stoner, Board Engineer
Councilmember AubergerP Jessica Caldwell, Board Planner
Martin TheobaldP Kimberley Decker, Board Secretary
Richard SpoerlNP  
Willard McPeekP  
Andrea Cocula (arrived at 7:08)P  
Michael WhitakerP  
Kristi RapertoNP  
Kelly Mitchell Alternate #1P  
Joseph Tadrick Alternate #2NP  
Paul Mele Alternate #3P  
Mark Vizzini Alternate #4NP  

Chairman Theobald stated Mr. Spoerl, Ms. Raperto and Mr. Vizzini informed the board of their absence.

Public Hearings

LU# 3-21-3 - Snowshoe Homes, LLC - Block 526, Lot 12, - Preliminary & Final Site Plan with Variances for a Proposed Single Family Residence

James Polles, Schenck Price & King, came forward as attorney and stated application is a proposal to construct a single-family residence in the R-4 zone and requesting one variance for rear yard setback. He added the affidavit of mailing and legal certified notice has been provided to the board secretary.

Beth Reeves, 9 Ray Run, Newton, stated she is a valid licensed architect in NJ since 1982 with a bachelor of arts from Cornell and a master’s from NJIT. Due to technical issues, Ms. Reeves was unable to show submitted plans to board but Mr. Stoner explained that application is for variance only and is deemed complete to be heard.

Ms. Reeves stated application is to construct a single-family log cabin with three bedrooms and 3 bathrooms and exterior will be brown exposed logs. She stated the application requests a rear setback variance of 34.8' for back porch landing with stairs to grade where 50' is required per code. Ms. Reeves added that adjacent lots are currently vacant and access to site is from Great Gorge private roadways.

Ms. Caldwell requested more testimony about how the cabin fits in neighborhood or if variance would affect future development. Ms. Reeves stated need for variance is to construct uncovered porch for back door of the house.

Mr. Stoner explained applicant is proposing to construct a dwelling including driveway and well, but the lot is narrow and odd shaped causing need for variance. The township code section 330-83 establishes a minimal improvable area with limit of environmentally sensitive areas. He stated this design standard requirement can be waived since lot is already in existence. Mr. Stoner added that applicant must provide driveway plan to address stormwater runoff per township code standards and grading on site drops off dramatically and may require guide rail.

Mr. Stoner explained proposal is before land use board therefore site plan grading, driveway plan, stormwater management will be inspected by board engineer for approval before a certificate of occupancy is issued. He added site is required to connect to the sanitary sewer system with the municipal utility authority. Mr. Stoner explained site is in the Highlands Preservation Area but is exempt because there is less than an acre disturbance but addressed concern that tree clearance be kept minimal.

Board members voted in affirmative to allow applicant work with board engineer concerning design standards including driveway plan, grading and stormwater management.

Ms. Caldwell summarized applicant is requesting to construct a single-family residence with variance for 34.8 rear yard setback.

Chairman Theobald opened the hearing to the public. Seeing no one wishing to comment, Chairman Theobald closed the hearing to the public.

George Gloede, engineer was sworn in and stated no objections to Mr. Stoner’s report. He stated he will work with Mr. Stoner for stormwater drainage, driveway plan, and noted applicant will preserve as many trees as possible. Mr. Gloede stated there will be minimal grading, no blasting per submitted Soil Erosion and Sediment Control Plan.

Attorney Tombalakian explained this is a variance application with design waivers to construct a single-family house in the R-4 zone. Applicant has agreed to work with board engineer on stormwater management, vehicle safety, driveway design and tree clearing disturbance before issuance of certificate of occupancy for property

Motion: Motion to approve LU#3-21-3 was made by Mr. Mele and was seconded by Ms. Cocula.

ROLL CALL: WEXLER: Y; WILLIAMS: Y; AUBERGER: Y; MCPEEK: Y: COCULA: Y; WHITAKER: Y; MITCHELL: Y; MELE: Y; THEOBALD: Y.
Motion passed.

LU# 11-20-8 - Claude Allain & Elizabeth Bilomauser - Block 404, Lot 1, - Minor Site Plan to Expand and Improve an Existing Structure to Create a Thai Restaurant

Mr. Mele stepped down from application.

Claude Allain & Elizabeth Bilomauser came forward as applicants and were sworn in to testify.

Mr. Stoner stated the application is complete enough for board to hear and has no objection to grant waivers for items: key map; contours, construction details, temporary waivers, and grading.

Mr. Allain stated he is requesting a 17' x 30' addition to the back of existing building for kitchen and handicap ramp on right side of building. He added landscaping will be added to back, parking lot will be restriped, and new signs added to building and near roadway. He noted site will be connected to Township sewer system with a 1500-gallon grease trap added.

Mr. Stoner discussed driveway plans and noted design waiver is needed for 9' x 18' size of spaces and variance for 15 spaces when 16 are required. Per code site is required 1 parking space per three seats to which Mr. Allain stated site will never exceed 51 seats.

Mr. Allain described the trash enclosure would be brick or stone sided accessible to trucks during morning hours. He added the back door with landing and walkway leading to dumpster will be added to site plan. Mr. Allain stated the building will have new windows and siding in beige or sage color per page A-10 of plans.

Mr. Allain stated he would like to further improve the site by cleaning up the fence line shared with neighboring bus depot. He described the lighting plan submitted with use of HADCO light fixtures per town center guidelines for essential coverage in parking area. Mr. Allain stated there will be two signs on the site, one on the building between the dormers and the other near roadway, both meeting township size standards.

Ms. Caldwell stated applicant addressed all her concerns based on report.

Chairman Theobald questioned brightness of lights in town center area and recommended that applicant get approval from board engineer prior to purchasing light fixtures.

Chairman Theobald opened the hearing to the public. Seeing no one wishing to comment, Chairman Theobald closed the hearing to the public.

Motion: Motion to approve LU#11-20-8 was made by Ms. Cocula and was seconded by Mr. Williams.

ROLL CALL: WEXLER: Y; WILLIAMS: Y; AUBERGER: Y; MCPEEK: Y: COCULA: Y; WHITAKER: Y; MITCHELL: Y; THEOBALD: Y.
Motion passed.

Mr. Mele returned to meeting.

Public Participation

Chairman Theobald opened the meeting to the public. Seeing no one wishing to comment, Chairman Theobald closed meeting to the public.

Resolutions

LU# 9-20-6: Farm 94, LLC - Block: 58, Lot: 2, - Preliminary and Major Site Plan with Bulk and Use Variances to Improve and Upgrade the Parking Lot, Additions to Two On-Site Buildings with Proposed Uses of Outdoor Retail Sales, Art Gallery, Craft Space, Event/Conference Space and Butcher Shop, a Proposed Warehouse/Equipment Building and Proposed Glamping Area

Attorney Tombalakian noted revisions were needed to be made to the resolution as follows:

On Page 2, last full paragraph, 4th sentence has been revised to:
A one story 10' x 20' addition is proposed including bathrooms and a produce wash area.

5th sentence added:
A separate 30' x 50' one story building is proposed for warehouse/equipment storage.

He added on 4th page, 1st full paragraph where there is list of various uses that applicants wants to do in “Farm Plex”:

Here the applicant is proposing retail sales; outdoor, farm store, butcher shop with community kitchen; studio; gallery; warehouse and event space; and area for glamping.

Motion: Motion to approve LU#3-21-3 was made by Ms. Cocula and was seconded by Mr. McPeek.

ROLL CALL: MCPEEK: Y: COCULA: Y; WHITAKER: Y; MITCHELL: Y; MELE: Y.
Motion passed.

LU# 2-21-1 - Evan Dolcimascolo - Block 458, Lot 92, - Bulk Variance for a Front Yard Deck and Staircase

Motion: Motion to approve LU#2-21-1 was made by Mr. Williams and was seconded by Mr. Mele.

ROLL CALL: WEXLER: Y; WILLIAMS: Y; AUBERGER: Y; MCPEEK: Y: COCULA: Y; WHITAKER: Y; MELE: Y; THEOBALD: Y.
Motion passed.

LU# 2-21-2 - Christopher Newsom - Block 263, Lot 4, - Major Site Plan with Use and Bulk Variances for a Proposed 3,200 Square Foot Pole Barn

Eligible to vote: Williams, Spoerl, McPeek, Whitaker, Raperto, Theobald

Motion: Motion to approve LU#2-21-2 was made by Mr. McPeek and was seconded by Mr. Theobald.

ROLL CALL: WILLIAMS: Y; MCPEEK: Y: WHITAKER: Y; THEOBALD: Y.
Motion passed.

Minutes

April 14, 2021 - Regular Meeting Minutes (Williams, McPeek, Cocula, Whitaker, Raperto, Mele, Theobald)

Motion: Motion to approve minutes of April 14, 2021 was made by Mr. Whitaker and was seconded by Mr. Williams.
All members were in favor except for Ms. Cocula who abstained.
Motion passed.

Appendix A: Escrows, Board Fees, Bond Reductions and Escrow Closures

  1. Board Fees
    1. Board Attorney: Glenn Kienz, Weiner Law Group LLP
      1. Land Use Board Business - Services through 3/26/21 ($964.00)
      2. Farm 94 LLC - LU# 9-20-6 - Services through 3/15/21 ($65.00)
      3. Allain & Bilomauser - LU# 11-20-8 - Services through 3/24/20 ($110.00)
      4. Snowshoe Homes LLC - LU# 2-21-3 - Services through 3/11/21 ($75.00)
      5. Kenneth Boschert - LU# 3-21-4 - Services through 3/24/21 ($45.00)
    2. Board Planner: Jessica Caldwell, J. Caldwell & Associates
      1. Land Use Board Business - Services through 3/30/21 ($375.00)
      2. Land Use Board Business - Services through 3/30/21 ($875.00)
      3. Land Use Board Business - Services through 3/24/21 ($437.50)
      4. Farm 94 LLC - LU# 9-20-6 - Services through 3/24/21 ($812.50)
      5. Farm 94 LLC - LU# 9-20-6 - Services through 3/19/21 ($375.00)
      6. Christopher Newsom - LU# 2-21-2 - Services through 3/29/21 ($625.00)
      7. Evan Dolcimascolo - LU# 2-21-1 - Services through 3/29/21 ($375.00)
      8. Snowshoe Homes LLC - LU# 2-21-3 - Services through 3/19/21 ($420.00)
    3. Board Engineer: Cory Stoner, Harold E. Pellow & Associates
      1. Land Use Board Business - Services through 2/16/21 ($232.75)
    4. Board Recording Secretary: Irene Mills ($125.00)
    5. Board Conflict Attorney - Ursula Leo, Laddey, Clark & Ryan LLP
      1. Diamond Communications LLC - LU# 10-18-7 - Services through 1/12/21 ($112.32)

Motion: Motion to approve fees was made by Ms. Cocula and was seconded by Ms. Wexler.
All members were in favor.
Motion passed.

Adjournment

There being no further items of business to be conducted on the agenda, a motion was made by Mr. Williams and were seconded by Mr. Auberger. All members were in favor. Meeting adjourned at 8:14 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted
Irene Mills, Recording Secretary