May 4, 2021
Present:Mark Lockwood, Margaret Chapple, Jonathan Boardman, Christine Chinni, Eric Myers, Brennan Sheahan. Also present: alternates, Paula Johnson and Matthew Peters; Director of Community Development Abigail Kenyon,
Lockwood called the meeting to order at 7 p.m.
Seating of Alternates
Peters was seated for Lukingbeal.
Review Agritourism and Farm Store Regulation with commission representatives
Johnson and Peters, commission representatives on the Agritourism and Farm Store Committee, provided an overview of the draft agritourism regulation. Under the proposed regulation, a limited farm store, farm-based recreational activities, farm tours and agricultural events would be permitted by right. Farm stores and non-agricultural events would require Special Permit approval. Definitions will be added to Section 1.4 for relevant terms. It was explained how the committee discussed at great length events and music, as those items were the most challenging.
The commission discussed the regulation. Several changes were suggested for the definitions, specifically noting hospitality services be removed from the agritourism definition and the farm store and limited farm store be better defined, specifically clarify that product should primarily be grown or produced on the farm where the store is located.
The commission discussed agricultural events. It was the consensus that such events may better be handled through a zoning permit or a separate special-event permit. Kenyon will research this in more detail.
The commission reviewed the farm store section of the regulation and the provision of music. It was decided language should be added to clarify what type of music would be allowed. The definition of light music used in other Special Permits that have recently been approved can be used as a model.
It was noted the commission may also want to consider limiting the duration music can be played, anywhere from three to four hours on a single day. It was noted as the farm store is a Special Permit and that could be a condition of approval. For non-agricultural events, the commission thought it should be clarified that an applicant is not entitled to the number of events outlined in the regulation. Instead, the number of non-agricultural events is an absolute maximum and it should be demonstrated why the commission should allow any non-agricultural events. Staff will prepare changes for consideration.
The commission will continue the regulation discussion at its regular meeting on May 11.
Abby Kenyon, Acting Recording Secretary
May 11, 2021
Present: Mark Lockwood, Margaret Chapple, Jonathan Boardman, Christine Chinni, Eric Lukingbeal, Eric Myers. Also present, alternates, Paula Johnson and Matthew Peters; Director of Community Development Abigail Kenyon,
Seating of Alternates
Johnson was seated for Sheahan.
Kenyon stated an email was received from a resident asking the commission to consider a moratorium on any applications that are submitted under the current Farm Store Zoning Regulation while the commission works on drafting a revised regulation. The email was distributed to the commission.
Application seeking an amendment to Zoning Regulations Sections 8.29 and 1.4 to add Alternative Energy System regulation and applicable definitions. File Z-8-21. (Continued from April 27)
The public hearing opened at 7:05 p.m. There were no comments. Lockwood asked Kenyon if any other public comment or communication had been received. Kenyon replied no. The public hearing closed at 7:06 p.m.
The commission considered feedback from the Granby Conservation Committee (GCC) regarding Section 184.108.40.206 residential ground-mounted solar energy systems. The GCC recommends allowing arrays by right rather than through the Special Permit process. All commission members were in favor of encouraging these systems however, there were concerns allowing them by right. While the draft regulation outlines the location where the array could be located and requires the same setback required for accessory structures, if they are allowed by right, there would be no opportunity to suggest an alternative location to better screen the system from adjacent homes.
It was also noted a neighbor would be unable to object to a system location. It was suggested the regulation remain as it is currently drafted, with residential ground-mount arrays requiring Special Permit approval. The commission will re-evaluate the regulation in one year and make changes if needed. Staff was asked to track the number of residents who decide not to apply for a Special Permit for a ground mount system so the commission can determine if a change is needed.
Receive applications, set public hearing
Application seeking to modify a Special Permit for an existing farm store and for the sale and serving of alcoholic beverages in conjunction with a farm brewery under Zoning Regulations Section 8.15.17, changes include hours, events, music, sale of alcoholic beverages, and illuminated signs, for property located at 192 and 198R Salmon Brook Street, Brewery at Maple View Farm. File Z-9-21.
Kenyon announced an additional application for a Special Permit of outdoor dining located at 357 Salmon Brook Street, Cambridge House. She asked the commission to receive this application and set a public hearing date.
The above applications are scheduled for Public Hearing on June 8.
Consideration of above applications, where the commission has concluded the public hearing
On A Motion by Chinni, and seconded by Boardman, the commission voted (7-0-0) to approve an application seeking an amendment to Zoning Regulations Sections 8.29 and 1.4 to add Alternative Energy System regulation and applicable definitions as presented to CRCOG. File Z-8-21.
Commission discussion of Agritourism and Farm Store Regulations
Kenyon presented changes to the agritourism and farm store regulation to the commission. Changes include music and live entertainment may be permitted in conjunction with an agricultural event subject to certain conditions. It was clarified that an applicant would have to apply for a temporary event permit un der Section 2.9 to have entertainment. There is no cost for this permit, and it is reviewed and approved by staff.
The commission reviewed Section 2.9 Temporary and Conditional Permits and suggested some changes to include the zones where such permits may be granted. Changes to Section 10.1 Enforcement and Penalties were also suggested and an outline of the process for revoking a Special Permit if there is noncompliance with conditions of approval. Language was to be added to clarify the commission may rescind, revoke, or modify a Special Permit if needed. Kenyon will incorporate feedback and present for commission review at the next meeting. It will then be submitted to CRCOG and scheduled for a public hearing. Answering a question, she stated the current regulations remain in effect until this new regulation is adopted.
Staff Report and Correspondence
Kenyon reported a meeting is scheduled with the Department of Transportation regarding the planned improvements to Granby Center. Updates will be provided to the commission as they become available.
Commissioner Reports and
The commission discussed the meeting format for the May 25 meeting. They would like the meeting to be in person. Kenyon will coordinate and it will most likely be a hybrid meeting, allowing for both in person and remote participation.
Patricia Tappenden, Recording Secretary