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ZBA Meeting & Hearing - Komesar

Town of Leicester

Zoning Board of Adjustment Minutes

Tuesday, October 27, 2009




** See subsequent minutes for any changes


Members Present:  Gerry Flint, Chair, Jeff McDonough, Donna Swinington and Tim Johnson


Members Absent:   Pete Fjeld


Others Present:   Kate Briggs, Charlie & Bonnie Johnson, Gerry Leffler, Liz Herrmann, Amey Ryan, Lloyd Komesar and Maureen Carn, Sandra Trombley, Secretary


Call to Order/Roll Call:  Meeting called to order at 6:04 p.m. by Chair and roll call. 


Permit Application 3309-ZBA Parcel # 212119 Lloyd Komesar:


Chair asked any parties giving testimony to be sworn in.  Lloyd Komesar property owner, Liz Herrmann, architect, Amey Ryan, agent selling property and Gerry Leffler, representing Michael Corbette an adjoining property owner.


Chair asked Mr. Komesar to give an explanation and/or description of the permit application and what they intend to do.  Mr. Komesar had prepared a letter that he read to everyone describing their proposal.  The proposal to the board asks to permit the demolition of the existing structure, and allow for a new home to be built along essentially the same external dimensions of the current house with a modest increase in the overall height to accommodate the new foundation and standard floor to ceiling heights which are not present in the house now.  In conjunction with this, they would ask that the house retain its current nonconforming status.


Liz Herrmann, architect gave a summarization of the most serious problems of the current structure.  A structural engineer took a look at the house and a building inspector did a thorough investigation.   

·        So much of the house will need to be reconstructed in order to solve the problems, so it makes sense to start from scratch.

·        The foundation is failing, water infiltration, vaulting and cracking and difficult to access.

·        Structural problems under the living room

·        Piers are failing

·        Deck problems with piers that need proper footing

·        Lateral bracing is needed

·        Floor to ceiling heights are very low so house would need to be reframed.

·        Windows need to be replaced and reframed

·        Insulation would be needed from ground to roof

Liz’s recommendation would be to start from scratch for a better, sounder home.


Kate explained that the lot is a very long, narrow lot.  There is nowhere else to move it.  It can’t be made to be conforming.  Their overall exterior plans are quite modest.  She didn’t believe it would interfere with anyone’s site line.


Liz described the sketches.  There are a couple of piers that need to be pulled back away from the water and get proper footing. 


Kate asked Liz if she had been in contact with the State.  Kate thinks the ZBA would like you to do that and have a letter from them saying whatever and getting a clearance on what you are planning to do.  Liz would be happy to call Steve Hanna and ask what the procedure is.


Lloyd indicated that anything they would do would be to improve the situation.


Gerry Flint asked about setbacks.  There is 0’ on the McCullough side.  There is 33’ on the Michael Corbette side.  Gerry Leffler represented Michael Corbette.  Michael was wondering about the 0’ side.  Gerry Leffler read Mr. Corbette’s email.  Gerry Leffler doesn’t think there is an issue now that she has seen the plans.


The Chair asked Kate how she saw the application tonight.  Kate stated that it is always a variance when it is non-conforming property.  Gerry said that there was nothing checked off on the application on how we were viewing this application tonight.  They were in agreement it was a variance.


Kate brought up the garage.  The Chair mentioned that the garage has no impact on tonight’s application process.  Jeff stated that before they go too far, the garage is a separate issue.


The chair noted the Board added as part of the conditions they need to contact the State of Vermont regarding the water and its location.


Chair called for a VOTE:


1.  The hardship is due to the unique physical characteristics peculiar to the particular property.

·        Yes, unanimously.

2.  Because of such physical conditions, there is no possibility that the property can be developed in strict conformance with the zoning regulations.

·        Yes, unanimously

3.  The hardship has not been created by the applicant.

·        Yes, unanimously

4.  The variance, if authorized, will not adversely affect the character of the surrounding area, the use of adjoining property, or the public welfare.

·        Yes, unanimously

5.  The variance is the minimum necessary to grant relief.

·        Yes, unanimously

The permit has been approved.  Hearing concluded.


Lloyd asked about a comment period.  Kate explained there was a 30 day appeal period.  After 15 days she will issue the permit.  There is a 15 day appeal period for the permit.  So, the end of the 30 day period, the 15 days, the other appeal period, all coincide.  So, in 15 days she will issue the permit.  So, you can come and get it and post it on the property.  The abutting property owners have already been informed.  There is a 30 day period before construction should begin.  If you do begin, you do it with the risk of appeal.


You can begin demolition at any time.  Lloyd thinks they would begin construction next spring.


Discussion on our next meeting due to the Thanksgiving holiday.  Agreement to meeting November 17th.


Approve Minutes:


Donna made a motion to approve the minutes of August 25, 2009 and September 29, 2009.  Second by Tim.  All in favor.   Jeff McDonough abstained from September 29, 2009 meeting minutes because he was not in attendance for that meeting.


Discussion on Zoning Fees:


At our next meeting November 17th, they will set down and work on fees.  Tim commented the fees are not supposed to pay for all administrative fees and the ZA’s pay.  Tim will get fees from other towns, Brandon, Whiting, Salisbury and West Rutland. 


Need to have a discussion with Kate about signing the original permit application versus copies of permit applications.  Gerry stated we should leave a note for Kate.


Tim commented that in his opinion the signed originals should be in the file in the file cabinet and the signed copy should be in the book for the public to view.


Public Comment:


Bonnie Johnson asked the Chair and the Board about the status of the letter that she had brought to their attention back in August referring to the letter addressed to the Chair that they never received.  The Board was going to look into the mail that comes and check why it is pre-opened.  Have you done any action on this? 


Gerry has not spoken to Julie.  Gerry will have the conversation with Julie.  Donna will have the conversation for the Planning Commission.


Gerry apologized for not looking into the matter.




Executive Session:


Motion by Donna to go into executive session 7:15 p.m.  Second by Tim.  All in favor.  So approved.


Motion by Donna to come out of executive session with no decisions and adjourn at 8:08 p.m.  Second by Jeff.  All in favor. 


Respectfully submitted,



Sandra L. Trombley

ZBA Secretary