Town of Esopus Zoning Board of Appeals
Minutes
February 15, 2005

The meeting was called to order at 7:30 p.m. by Chairman Don Cole. The Pledge to the Flag followed.

ROLL CALL

Present: Catherine Charuk, Don Cole, Joe Guido, Richard Wenzel, and Karl Wick.
Absent: Darin DeKoskie and Rob Hare.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

JOE GUIDO MADE A MOTION TO APPROVE THE MINUTES AS SUBMITTED. CATHERINE CHARUK SECONDED. ALL PRESENT VOTED IN FAVOR EXCEPT FOR KARL WICK WHO ABSTAINED.

APPROVAL OF VOUCHERS

Vouchers were submitted for secretarial work and for a public hearing notice in the Freeman. JOE GUIDO MADE A MOTION TO APPROVE THE VOUCHERS. KARL WICK SECONDED. All present voted in favor.

INFORMATIONAL MEETING

Bunt, George  Case # 02-15-05-01

Mr. Bunt was present to explain that he would like to build a house on property that he owns on Route 9W, Ulster Park which is represented on tax map 63.04 as lot number 8. He also owns lot number 7 on that tax map. Mr. Cole asked if these are two separate pieces of property, if they had been subdivided. Mr. Bunt advised that they are two separate of pieces of property and that they were subdivided before he purchased them. Mr. Guido asked if he owned it before zoning and Mr. Bunt advised that he did not. He has only owned the property for four or five years. Ms. Charuk asked for help locating the property on the map. Mr. Cole asked the applicant how far down his property is from the Cracker Barrel (Checkerberryís) and Mr. Bunt explained that the driveway next to that property is his right of way driveway. Mr. Cole asked if the applicant is planning on building on lot 8 only and Mr. Bunt advised that there is a house on lot 7 already. Mr. Cole asked how many square feet there are on the property and if it is level land. Mr. Bunt advised that it is .96 of an acre and is on a hill with some level areas.

Mr. Cole asked about the size of the house and if it will be 27 X 60. Mr. Bunt advised that it will be a little smaller, 27 X 44 or 1210 square feet. This will be a modular house and he is getting a different model than he originally planned. It will be a cape, a two story with the second floor unfinished. Mr. Cole asked if there is a well on the property already or if the applicant will have to have both put in. Mr. Bunt answered that both will have to be put in but he has natural gas and electric to the other property already.

Mr. Guido asked the applicant if he knew it was designated commercial when he bought the property. Mr. Bunt said that at the time he didnít know it but he got the property for a good price. He bought the house and this piece of property was thrown in so it didnít hurt him. Mr. Guido asked if he would object if it was always taxed as commercial property even if the property was granted and he was allowed to put a residential building there. Mr. Bunt questioned what Mr. Guido meant by that and Mr. Guido explained that the Town had set up that area as commercial because they wanted the commercial tax base and to allow industries to come into that area. He explained that residential houses are taxed at a lower rate although it is not much lower. Mr. Wenzel asked what the other houses there are taxed as and Mr. Bunt asked what his other house is taxed at. Mr. Guido advised that the other houses were up there before the area was zoned and before the applicant bought this property. Mr. Bunt said he doesnít think thatís fair and he doesnít think he should be taxed as commercial if he puts a house up there.

Ms. Charuk asked if the applicant lived in the other house on the adjoining property and Mr. Bunt replied that his son lives there. Ms. Charuk then asked why the applicant is putting a house up there and he stated that he is going to live in it. Mr. Wenzel stated that you would have to look at the site to see that it isnít really set up for industrial because of the way itís laid out and because itís locked in. The right of way is minimal and he stated that he doesnít think you would be able to get commercial vehicles up there. It doesnít seem like the ideal spot for light industry. Topographically it is not really suited to light industrial according to Mr. Wenzel.

Mr. Wick stated that he has a couple questions. He asked if the applicant had owned the property for four years and Mr. Bunt answered that he would say four or five years. Mr. Wick asked if he got title insurance when he bought the property and Mr. Bunt said that he has everything. Mr. Wick suggested that he check the policy and see if a title search was done to see when lot 8 was created. Mr. Wick stated that he feels that if it was created prior to zoning as a residential lot, he would certainly vote in favor. Mr. Cole stated that all new zoning went into effect in 1995. Mr. Wick stated that he believed that all these lot pre-dated that but the applicant should check anyway because it might be a pre-existing residential lot. Ms. Charuk asked what the applicantís tax bill shows and Mr. Wick said that it shows 311, vacant residential because he looked it up in the county.

Ms. Charuk asked if lot 7 is landlocked because the map shows it behind lot 8. Mr. Bunt advised that it is his property and the driveway is a right of way for everybody up there. Mr. Wick asked if it was O.K. for the Board to look at the property and Mr. Bunt stated that it is. There was some discussion about where the property is shown on the map and where the access to it is. Mr. Wick suggested that the applicant also provide photos showing that there are houses on neighboring properties. Mr. Bunt said that he was told that because the other side of 9W, the Mirror Lake side, is not commercial, that that might help him also. Mr. Guido explained that the grant variances, the Board needs reasons and the more reasons the applicant can state, the better his chance is of getting the variance. There were no other questions.

ADJOURN

JOE GUIDO MADE A MOTION TO ADJOURN. RICHARD WENZEL SECONDED. ALL PRESENT VOTED IN FAVOR. Meeting adjourned 7:45 p.m.
 
Respectfully submitted,

Kathleen Kiernan
Secretary