MINUTES OF THE CATAWBA ISLAND BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS
DECEMBER 12, 2012
The Pledge of Allegiance was recited. Chairman Bryan Baugh called the meeting to order at
7:30 p.m. Board members in attendance were Bryan Baugh, Tom Anslow, Jack Zeigler, Shelly
Stively and Jack DeVore. Alternates Jack Zeigler and Shelly Stively served as voting members
in the absence of Sandra Erwin and Doug Blackburn. Mr. Baugh appointed Shelly Stively to
serve as Secretary for the meeting. The zoning inspector, Walter Wehenkel, and Township
Trustee, Matt Montowski were present. Mr. Baugh read through the procedure to be followed
for the meeting. There were no questions.
Mr. Baugh asked the acting secretary, Shelly Stively, to read the first case.
Case # 544614
The first case is an area variance request from Douglas Newcomb for property at 2882 N. Perch
Rowand also known as Lot 33 of Harbor Island Subdivision in Catawba Island Township. The
request is to allow an area variance permitting the reduction of a rear yard setback from twenty
five feet to nineteen feet. The variance would allow the construction of a second story deck
facing Perch Row on the rear of a new home the applicant wishes to build. All fees have been
paid, it has been properly published and there is no notarized correspondence.
Bryan Baugh asked if any member of the Board had a conflict of interest. There were no
conflicts. Mr. Baugh asked who was speaking on this request. Doug Newcomb introduced
himself. Chairman Baugh swore in Mr. Newcomb. Mr. Newcomb made the following
Mr. Newcomb indicated he wants to replace the existing home with a new home. The design for
the front of the home includes a portico that sticks out. The second floor deck hangs out over the
portico about six feet. The entire home does not need the variance. Only the second floor deck
requires the variance. The deck will not create an obstruction or block any views. Bryan Baugh
asked if the front of the home facing Perch Row is on the setback. Mr. Newcomb stated that was
correct. The upper deck is all that sticks out.
Bryan Baugh swore in Bill Vondra. Mr. Vondra stated he serves on the Trustees of the Harbor
Island Homeowners Association. He is also a registered surveyor and did the survey for this
property. He wished to correct one statement that Mr. Newcomb made in his presentation. The
garage facing Perch Row is also about one foot into the setback area. He proceeded to the front
of the room and showed the Board on the plans where to garage was located. The Board
acknowledged the variance would be required for the garage as well as the deck.
Mr. Zeigler asked if there were any side views of the proposed home. Using the plans at the
front of the room, Mr. Newcomb showed Mr. Zeigler and the Board members the side views.
Mr. DeVore questioned what was remaining and what would be eliminated. Mr. Newcomb
explained the changes using the plans. Mr. DeVore asked if the deck on the canal side of the
home was staying. Mr. Newcomb responded the channel side complies with all setback
requirements. Only the street side is in conflict with the setback requirements.
Bryan Baugh asked Mr. Wehenkel if the porch was included in the lot coverage calculations.
Mr. Wehenkel stated it was included as well as the second floor deck.
Jack Zeigler asked if the homeowner's association has rules and regulations. Mr. Vondra
responded that they do. The sheet piling is considered the front by the association. The rear
setback is "silent" as it relates to the regulations. The association has a seven foot side setback.
The zoning resolution addresses pre-existing lots. Mr. Wehenkel added that the Supplemental
Regulations in Section 7 of the zoning resolution requires a seven foot setback for a lot with a
width of seventy feet. He added the homeowner's association has approved the proposed plans
as noted by the signatures in the upper right hand comer of the plans.
There were no additional questions from the Board members. Mr. Baugh asked if there was
anyone who wished to cross-examine Mr. Newcomb. There was no one. Mr. Baugh closed the
public hearing and asked for comments from the Board members.
Mr. Baugh stated he looked up and down the street and did not feel that the proposed deck would
impede anyone's view. There is a house to the north as well .as one to the south that stick out at
least as far as the proposed deck. Tom Anslow noted that the house to the north is turned and not
truly parallel to Perch Row. Mr. Vondra noted that the house to the north is Greenlees and Mr.
Newcomb's home would stick out slightly more. Jack DeVore stated that he lined up the pins
along Perch Rowand felt they were pretty equal with the gentleman to the north and the
driveway .. Jack Zeigler started there were a couple of homes that were setback more and that
helps create an illusion that these stick out more. Mr. Vondra noted the setback from the sheet
piling is how the homes are lined up.
Jeff Medley was sworn in by Bryan Baugh. Mr. Medley indicated he is the adjoining property
owner to the Newcomb property. He does not object to the variance request. He believes the
driveway is very close to the deck line. Tom Anslow stated he did not see the "need" to grant
the variance, but the "want" is obvious. There is not much of a hardship. It would likely be a
nicer looking home than the one that is presently on the lot. Mr. Newcomb responded that the
need issue is driven by the garage door on Perch Row. lfthe garage is shortened, a car would
not fit inside. The deck is required over the portico to make it more appealing.
Bryan Baugh asked the secretary to read the Finding of Fact. Mrs. Stively read the applicant's
responses to each question. The Board agreed with the responses to questions 2,3,4,5, and 7.
The Board disagreed with the response to questions 1 and 6. In both cases the Board felt an
architectural redesign could solve the need for the variance.
There being no further discussion, Chairman Baugh requested a motion on case # 544614. Jack
Zeigler moved to approve case #544614 as requested based upon the submitted drawings. Jack
Devore seconded the motion. The motion passed with Tom Anslow abstaining from the vote.
Case # 544615
Chairman Baugh requested Shelly Stively read the second case. Mrs. Stively stated the request is
for an area variance from Michael Mallett for property at 3544 N. Surfside Drive and also being
in Section 11 of Catawba Island Township. The request is to allow an area variance permitting a
building height in excess ofthe required thirty-five feet. The area variance would allow a thirty
seven inch high wrought iron railing on the flat portion of the roof of the residence. The new
building height would be approximately thirty-seven feet and eight inches. The hearing has been
properly advertised and the fees paid. A notarized statement from the applicant was received.
Mr. Baugh asked that Mrs. Stively read the statement for the record which she did.
Mr. Baugh asked if any members had a conflict with the case. There were no conflicts. Mr.
Baugh stated Mr. Mallett could not be in attendance and asked if anyone was representing him.
Mr. Ed Stevens introduced himself. Mr. Baugh swore in Mr. Stevens.
Mr. Stevens stated he is an adjoining property owner. He stated he has no objection to the railing
or the height variance. The railing would allow Mr. Mallett to enjoy the view across the water.
He has water on three sides. He is in favor ofthe request. There was no other testimony.
Jack DeVore stated there is no great need for this variance to be approved. The house is already
very high. He is not in favor of the request. Jack Zeigler stated he wished he could have been up
on the roof. Ifhe owned the home, he would want the opportunity. Bill Vondra asked for
permission to speak. Mr. Baugh swore in Mr. Vondra. Mr. Vondra questioned how much of an
intrusion would be needed for the railing. Mr. Anslow stated it would be about thirty seven feet
or about a two foot intrusion. Mr. Anslow stated he agreed with Mr. DeVore's position. The
homes surrounding it don't create an issue as they are all big homes.
A general discussion on the appearance of the railing occurred. Ed Stevens stated the railing was
coming from Superior Aluminum, a supplier of railing. It was aluminum, but would be black in
color to look like wrought iron. It would blend in nicely with the home's appearance. Mr.
Wehenkel added that the sketch that was submitted with the application has an artist's rendering
of the railing.
Shelly Stively states it is really more of a safety issue. If they get up on the roof, she agrees that
it is a "want", but also a "need" for safety reasons if they are up there. Jack DeVore asked if the
applicant was before the Board this year. Mr. Wehenkel stated Mr. Mallett was before the Board
at his request. He had submitted a plan and Mr. Wehenkel wanted to get the Board's
interpretation on how building height is determined as this is a unique parcel of land on a hill.
Mr. Wehenkel stated he thought it was in Mayor June. Mr. Zeigler corrected Mr. Wehenkel
stating it was in July. Mr. Baugh stated at that time he agreed to lower the height and created the
flat roof rather than the peak. He now has something he would like to enjoy.
Chairman Baugh asked Shelly Stively to read the responses to the questions on the Finding of
Fact. The Board agreed with the responses to questions 2,3,4, 5, and 7. They disagreed with
the responses to questions 1 and 6 citing the railing was not a necessity, but an option which the
Mr. Baugh asked for a motion on case # 544615. Tom Anslow moved to approve the variance as
requested. Jack Zeigler seconded the motion. The motion passed with Jack DeVore voting no ..
November 14 Minutes
Mr. Baugh asked for comments or approval of the November 14,2012 minutes as mailed. Mr.
Zeigler stated he felt the second sentence of the minutes for case # 544609 should be clarified.
The variance request is for a side yard variance and not a front yard as indicated. Mr. Baugh
asked Mr. Wehenkel to make the correction. Mr. Wehenkel indicated he would do so.
Mr. Baugh requested a motion to approve the minutes as corrected. Jack Zeigler moved to
approve the minutes as corrected. Jack DeVore seconded the motion. The motion passed
Mr. DeVore asked if there were answers available in writing to the questions that were discussed
at the training session. Matt Montowski stated he would get that material. A general discussion
of the training session followed.
Jack DeVore moved to adjourn the meeting. Jack Zeigler seconded the motion. The meeting
was adjourned at 8:25 p.m.
Bryan Baugh, Chairman
Sandra Erwin, Secretary