Thursday, February 12, 2009

Full Steam Ahead on Draft Plan

Following an outstanding meeting last night with an excellent turnout, we're shifting our attention to developing the Comprehensive Plan document and final plan maps. The draft plan will be presented at a public hearing in April (tentatively scheduled for April 15 @ 4:15 p.m.), but I encourage you all to keep an eye on the Town's Smart Growth Website, where we'll post updated drafts as they become available.

Back to last night's meeting: thanks to everyone (we had about 50 participants, at my rough estimation) for coming out, providing your comments and suggestions, and generally taking interest and ownership in this process and plan. Your commitment and effort will directly lead to a better, more meaningful, and more useful Town Plan. I encourage you all to remain active and involved in the Plan as we move towards adoption and through implementation of the tasks and policies outlined in it.

A final note: we've changed the settings on the blog so you shouldn't have to register any longer if you want to comment. It should be noted that "anonymous" comments will not be as useful to the plan commission in its decision-making as those from identified Town property owners and residents.

Thanks again everyone. Stay tuned and we'll see you in April!


Anonymous said...

Thank you for removing the walking path from the transportation map.


Anonymous said...

In regards to the Feb. 11, 2009 presentation on the Agricultural, Natural, & Cultural Resources Element, where it is recommended to "Prohibit, or at least carefully regulate against, development in and around environmental corridors," please remove the word "PROHIBIT." While most of my property is identified as an environmental corridor, only a small portion of it is wetland and most of it is buildable. Even to recommend that the Town "carefully regulate against development in and around environmental corridors" seems wrong. If the environmental corridor is going to include land that is not wetland and is buildable and the land "around the environmental corridor" is also buildable, then perhaps you could find a new way to word this for the final draft.
Thank you.

petersens said...

Regarding the recommendation for the Agricultural, Natural and Cultural Resources Element as presented in the 2/11/09 meeting, we oppose the use of the word "prohibit" regarding development. When we purchased our land, we were very aware of the flood plain and the fact that we would not be able to build on it. However, part of the land is not on the flood plain and has been soil tested in preparation for building a home in the future. The word "prohibit" is too severe and does not take into account privately owned land that has not, yet, been developed. We also agree with "Anonymous" that even the wording "carefully regulate against development in and around environmental corridors" seems wrong of the land included in the environmental corridor includes buildable land, that is not wetland. We are very concerned that our landowners rights are being signifiacantly limited by this recommendation. In reviewing the division of our land, we note that we paid some sort of park fee. At the time it was explained that we would have to pay this as we were not including some public land in the division.
Again, we would like to see the recommendation reworded for the final draft.

Smith said...

As common property owners with full time jobs, it is not practical for all of us to have in-depth knowledge of the assorted local, state, and federal regulations that pertain to wetlands. Suffice to say, a level of protection already exists that would greatly restrict what we can and can not do within wetlands.

As people whose jobs involve such matters, it would be a great service to us if you could explain why the additional proposed language is necessary to insure the protection of the environmental corridors. As things stand now, it appears you are either placing additional restrictions above and beyond existing local/state/federal regulations or you are spending time creating redundant language for no net benefit.

Yes, as a property owner along the creek, I am both aware of its uniqueness and value and I am skeptical of township action which could further restrict my options. Telling us why existing restrictions are not sufficient may help us better understand the town's goals and also allow us to suggest language less ambiguous and less ominous. Quite frankly, I have a hard time accepting the idea that the DNR doesn't already have sufficient regulation in place such that additional town action is needed.


Please see page 32 of the Draft Plan, which has been updated frequently and available on-line for several months. The comments above (referencing "prohibition") refer to a slide show presentation of recommendations and NOT the Plan Document itself, the latter being what the plan commission will use as the final word. The Plan itself states: "In environmental corridor areas where regulation currently exists
(i.e., wetlands, floodplains), the Town will continue to support
those regulations. In the “non-regulated” areas (steep slopes,
etc.), the Town does not intend to enact or exercise further
regulation." Again, please consult the document (which you can link to from the main blog page) for context and clarification. As for the concern/question about redundancy, the Plan is required to acknowledge and/or expand upon,reference, etc. existing plans, ordinances, regulations and so forth. Hence, we acknowledge that regulations exist at various levels and that the Town will continue to support such regulations.