Posted by: Dawn Powell | October 25, 2010

Planning Board October 18, 2010


Planning Board – October

There were 2 Planning Board meetings this month (unlike the past several).  Tom Patterson hasn’t been
there in ages.  Wasn’t there something about attendance for members of decision making boards?  Why hasn’t he been replaced?

Only Maple Leaf and three garages were on the agenda.  Maple Leaf Associates is planning a landscaping truck dispatch operation at the Perosky property on Oscawana Lake Road at the entrance to Morrissey Drive.  At the last meeting, Maple Leaf was asked to let the Board know how they
were similar to Tompkins Landscaping, and how they were in compliance with the Comprehensive Plan.  There was no further
public discussion of this.  I want so much more in government transparency.  The public hearing is November 1 at 6PM.

1.    Landscaping is not a listed use in the Town code.

2.    This parcel has been assessed and in use as residential one acre (R1).  Now it is
moving forward as Community Commercial 2 (CC2).  This discrepancy has not been explained.

3.      For a short time, there was a small piece of Town code that said that the ZBA could decide uses.  State law specifically says that they
can’t.  It is the job of the town Board to legislate town Code.

4.      But that repeal was not before the now famous Tompkins Landscaping Decision and Order by the Zoning Board, which allowed a
use that was not in the code – landscape contracting.

5.      Landscaping is not defined.  There are no parameters for what landscapingis.  It is not a permitted use in the code.

6.      So along came Elite Environmental Tank Testing or Putnam Valley Petroleum and they said they were the same as Tompkins landscaping.  The ZBA and Planning Board agreed and provoked 3 lawsuits.

7.      The judge said no 3 times.

8.      The Tompkins Decision and Order didn’t exactly say, that is, it didn’t say that the ZBA was adding a new use to the code.  It said that landscape contracting wasn’t intentionally left out of the code. (Yikes!)

9.      Mr. Tumolo, of Maple Leaf Associates, went to the Planning Board, and the Town Board, and said that he was the same as
McKinney’s, the landscaping operation with no approvals.  Then he said that he was the same as Tompkins.  He said he would use the site
as an office, to dispatch trucks, and store materials.

10.  The Tompkins D&O says that they are just like construction material sales, a permitted use.  But they are not.  Neither is Maple Leaf.

11.  CC2 zoning says that uses must be “compatible with the residential character and environment of the adjacent neighborhood,” “more
restricted than the CC1 district.”

12.    The 100’x100’ gravel pad for parking trucks, the daily dispatch of trucks, the large size of Maple Leaf’s operation and the
early and late return of trucks are not compatible with the peaceful enjoyment of a residential neighborhood.

13.   The Comprehensive Plan envisions a CC3 zone for Lake Peekskill, which is even more restrictive than current zoning.

14.  The Tompkins D&O says that it is a Type I and a Type II action under SEQRA.

15.   The job of the Planning Board is not to fancifully interpret zoning code under a previous bizarre ZBA D&O, but they have already made up their minds.


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