TOWN OF SANTA CLARA PLANNING BOARD MEETINGS
Meeting of the Santa Clara Planning Board held on June 07, 2021
PRESENT: Board Members: Scottie Adams (via speakerphone), Mike Ritchie, Bill Young, John LaHart. Also present was Upper Saranac Lake Manager, Guy Middleton.
ABSENT: Beth Hall
The meeting was called to order by Chair, Scottie Adams at 9:00 AM.
The first order of business was to approve the minutes of the previous meeting which all received by email. Mike Ritchie moved to approve the minutes. John LaHart seconded the motion. All members were in favor. The minutes from the Planning Board meeting on 05-24-2021 are approved.
APPLICANT: Mary Knotts
PARCEL ID: 473.-2-12
LOCATION: 765 Bartlett Carry Rd, USL
The applicants have applied for an area variance to allow for a new boathouse and dock structures which would have a combined square footage that exceeds that allowed in the Santa Clara town land use code, section 7.35. The applicants seek approval to replace 2 existing shoreline structures while maintaining the current locations and setbacks from property lines. The variance states “The area of the new individual structures is within the allowed limits however, the total area combination exceeds the maximum allowed of 875 sq. ft. under Santa Clara town land use code, section 7.35. The proposed boathouse including the covered dock area and uncovered dock area is 873 sq. ft. the proposed additional dock is 332 sq. ft. the total area is 1205 sq. ft. “
Members of the Planning Board discussed the variance application and noted the following:
Sideline setbacks: TSC Land Use Code Section 5.10 (25 ft.)
The location of the separate replacement dock is shown but no sideline setback distance is shown. However, it appears to be much greater than the sideline setback minimum.
The location of the new boathouse/dock is shown but no setback distance is shown and it appears to be close to the side line boundary. Estimating from the site plan, sideline setback appears to be ~ 18 ft. The sideline setback for this structure should be checked to determine if it complies with the code or requires a variance.
Dimension along shoreline: Section 7.35 A (15%)
The dimension (width) of the new boathouse/dock (31 ft 11 in.) along the 191 ft. shoreline is 17 % and exceeds the legal limit.
The dimension (width) of the separate dock (25 ft.) along the 191 ft. shoreline is 13 % and meets the legal limit.
The combined dimension (width) of the new boathouse/dock and the separate dock along the 191 ft. shoreline is 30 % and exceeds the legal limit.
Dock Square footage: Section 7.35 A ( 500 sq. ft.)
The square footage of the separate dock is 332 sq. ft. and is within the legal limit.
The square footage of the dock area attached to the boathouse is 251 sq. ft. and is within the legal limit.
The combined total square footage of the dock space attached to the boathouse (251 sq. ft.) and the separate dock 332 sq. ft.) is 583 sq. ft. which exceeds the legal limit.
Additionally, the dimensions of the ramp/walkway to the boathouse are not included in the measurements. This structure is estimated to be 20 ft x 4 ft for a total square footage of 80 sq. ft. thus, the square footage of the dock area attached to the boathouse is 251 + ~80 sq. ft. = 331 sq. ft. and is within the legal limit.
Boathouse square footage: Section 7.35B (625 sq. ft.)
The new boathouse is stated as 622 sq. ft. and is within the legal limit.
Combined square footage of boathouse and docks: Section 7.35C. ( 875 sq. ft.)
The combined total square footage of the new boathouse and attached dock is listed as 873 sq. ft. and is within the legal limit.
The combined total square footage of the new boathouse and attached dock and the separate dock is listed as 873 sq. ft. + 332 sq. ft. = 1205 sq. ft. and exceeds the legal limit.
Projection from shore: Section 7.35 A (30 ft)
The length of the separate dock projecting from the shoreline is 25 ft. which is within the legal limit.
The new boathouse/dock is 27 ft. 4” long but is estimated to be situated ~ 9 ft. from the shoreline. Therefore, it extends ~ 36.4 ft. from the shoreline which exceeds the legal limit.
The Planning Board would recommend that the second unattached dock be eliminated and then reapply for a variance(s) for the Boathouse/dock to accommodate the fact that the boathouse already exists in its current location and there are shoreline boulders. The application should include the dimensions of the ramp/walkway to the boathouse. A variance would then be needed for the sideline setback, the combined square footage. A shorter ramp (as sketched in one of the plans for the new boathouse/dock) would require a lesser variance. An additional variance would be required for how far the boathouse/dock projects from the shoreline.
Bill Young moved that the Planning Board recommend to the Variance Board that the variance application be denied until the matters listed above can be addressed. Mike Richie seconded the motion. All members present were in favor of recommending denial of the variance application. The chair will send a copy of the minutes to the Variance Board Chair and Secretary before the variance hearing on June 25, 2021.
Although no word has been received from the special counsel regarding the latest STR revisions, the Planning Board agreed that the STR material should be presented to the Town Board before their next Board meeting on June 17, 2021 so that they may begin considering the options for moving forward.
John LaHart provided a copy of the proposed STR regulations to Art Devlin, the mayor of Lake Placid, because he had extensive experience with Lake Placid’s short term rental situation. John reported that Mr. Devlin thought we had done a good job. His only suggestion would be to consider applying regulations to those rentals at which the owner is present 24/7. (Article I C). Also, considered Article I D banning any future new STRs was an excellent addition.
Related to the STR problem is the issue of large-scale commercial rentals taking place in areas zoned residential. Guy Middleton suggested that the Town needs to include a definition of commercial rental and/or enterprises used for large scale functions in the Town Land Use code to distinguish them from short-term rentals.
Chair Scottie Adams will provide the Town Clerk with a copy of these meeting minutes from 06-07-2021 for posting in the Town website
The next meeting will be scheduled depending on site Plan review application and variance application submittals and the outcome of the Town Board Meeting on June 17, 2021
Mike Ritchie moved that the meeting be adjourned. Bill Young seconded the motion. All were in favor of the motion. Meeting was adjourned 9:15 AM.