MINUTES OF THE CATAWBA ISLAND BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS
August 14, 2013
Joyce & Mark Waltz
The Pledge of Allegiance was recited. Chairman Bryan Baugh called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. Board members in attendance were Bryan Baugh, Sandy Erwin, and Jack DeVore. Chairman Baugh requested alternate member Jack Zeigler replace Tom Anslow on the Board. Walter Wehenkel, Township Zoning Inspector, and Matt Montowski, Township Trustee were also in attendance. Mr. Baugh read through the procedure to be followed for the meeting. There were no questions concerning the procedure by those in attendance.
Mr. Baugh asked the secretary, Sandy Erwin, to read the information for the first case.
Case #544725 – Mark & Joyce Waltz
The applicants are Mark and Joyce Waltz and they are requesting an area variance for 1444 N. Orchard Beach Drive and also known as Sublot 112 of Catawba Orchard Beach Subdivision in Catawba Island Township. The property is zoned “R-3”. The request will allow an area variance permitting a new single family home to be built with a front setback variance to 8 feet on Orchard Beach Drive instead of the required twenty-five feet and a rear setback of 8 feet instead of the required twenty-five feet. All fees have been paid and there is no notarized correspondence.
Bryan Baugh asked if any member of the Board had a conflict of interest. No member did. He asked who was present to discuss the request. Mark Waltz introduced himself and was sworn in by Mr. Baugh.
Mr. Waltz stated the variance is for Lot 112. He stated he used a survey map to prepare the drawings that were submitted with the application. They presently reside in a cottage and would like to build a more permanent residence. He has discussed his plans with his neighbors and they are all in agreement with the plans.
Mr. Waltz stated he had some confusion about which area would be his rear yard as the lot has a road on two sides. He referred to his drawing to explain what he considered as front and rear yards. The first floor will be a garage and workshop while the second floor will have 2,000 square feet of living area. It is referred to as a “raised ranch.” He does woodworking and his wife and neighbor do pottery and glass. There will be stairs and an elevator in the back of the house as well as stairs with a landing on the front. The back of the house he considers is opposite the longest street length.
Jack Zeigler asked if the rear entrance and elevator faces the neighbor’s driveway and if there will be steps associated with it. Mr. Waltz stated there would be a porch slab at ground level. The driveway is slightly offset to the north. Mr. Baugh asked about the overall height of the structure. Mr. Waltz stated it would be thirty-two feet and his understanding is thirty-five feet is the maximum height that is permitted. Mr. Baugh asked if the lot coverage of 31% included the patios and stairs. Mr. Waltz stated that it did include both.
Mr. Zeigler stated the drawings were much clearer than the pins located on site. Mr. Waltz stated he met three of the Board members when they visited the site and was able to explain the plans to them. He was sorry Mr. Zeigler was not one of them. Jack Devore stated he had no issues with the proposal and nothing stood out that caused him concern.
Mr. Baugh asked if anyone in attendance had questions for Mr. Waltz or wanted to provide testimony to the Board. There was no one that raised their hand. Mr. Baugh closed the discussion to the public and requested comments from the Board members. Mr. Zeigler stated the stairs in the front are still back from the road and line up with the other homes. The eight foot setback in the rear works okay with the existing driveway abutting it. Mr. Baugh stated he agreed. The lot is substandard and the house plan fits well with the neighborhood. He was concerned at first with the height, but it is less than the maximum height allowed.
Mr. Baugh asked Sandy Erwin to read the Finding of Fact submitted with the application. The Board agreed with all seven responses provided. Mr. Baugh asked for a motion concerning the request. Jack DeVore moved to approve the request as presented. Sandy Erwin seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
Case #544726 – Optimus Development
Sandy Erwin read the information for the second case, which is for an area variance. The request is from Optimus Development LLC for property at 1870 N. West Catawba Road in Section 3, Lot 2 of Catawba Island Township. The property is presently zoned “R-1”. The request would allow an area variance permitting a fence to exceed the seven foot height requirement in the rear yard. The request is to allow a fence with a height of ten feet adjacent to Shade Acres Campground on the south side of the property. All fees have been paid and there is no notarized correspondence.
Mr. Baugh asked if any Board member had a conflict of interest with the case. Mo member did. He asked who was present to discuss the application. Tony Corona introduced himself and was sworn in by Mr. Baugh.
Mr. Corona stated he is involved with Fairway Development and Sunshine Development on Catawba Island. This property was previously known as Cayman Club Estates. He and a partner recently purchased the property. The owners requested a zoning change which was approved last night by the Township Trustees. The owners would like to build a ten foot high fence in the southwest corner of the property against the existing campground. The present seven foot high fence is two feet on their property. The applicant would either add to it or replace the fence.
Mr. Baugh asked how many lineal feet of fence is being proposed. Mr. Corona stated about 715 lineal feet. Sandy Erwin asked how the existing fence could be added on to. Mr. Corona stated they probably cannot add to the existing fence and will simply replace it. Mr. Zeigler asked about the style of fence being considered. Mr. Corona stated a final decision has not been reached, but it will most likely be wooden and very similar to what is presently there.
Mr. DeVore stated he saw green flags in the southwest corner as well as stakes with orange tops. Mr. Corona stated the green flags identified where the fence is being proposed. The orange post showed the two foot offset that exists. Mr. Corona stated he has met with the owners of the campground. They have no objection to the proposed fence and may be willing to share in the effort. They realize the proposed fence will block visibility issues and help reduce noise.
Bryan Baugh asked if a landscape alternative had been considered. Mr. Corona stated they might look at that, but a solid fence would seem to work better. The campers use it as a backdrop and have paintings and designs on their side. Mr. DeVore asked if the proposed fence would be inside of the existing fence. Mr. Corona stated that was correct. It would be on the property line.
Mr. Baugh asked if there was any cross examination from those in attendance or any other testimony. There was none. Mr. Baugh closed the hearing to the public and requested input from the Board members.
Jack DeVore stated he is not a big fan of fences. He felt a landscaping alternative would be more acceptable. Mr. Baugh stated if he owned one of the proposed lots against the campground, he would prefer a fence for privacy. Jack Zeigler stated a tree line might be difficult to maintain in this area. Mr. Baugh agreed that a tree line could become problematic in the future. Mr. Wehenkel reminded Mr. Corona that the “ugly” side of the fence must face his property.
Mr. Baugh requested Sandy Erwin read the Finding of Fact. The Board agreed with the responses to all of the questions except number 6. Two Board members disagreed with the response to that question.
Mr. Baugh requested a motion on case # 544726. Mr. Zeigler moved to approve the requested as presented. Sandy Erwin seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
July Meeting Minutes
Mr. Baugh asked for a motion concerning the July 10, 2013 meeting minutes. Jack Devore moved that the minutes be approved as mailed. Sandy Erwin seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
Jack Devore moved to adjourn the meeting. Jack Zeigler seconded the motion. The meeting was adjourned at 7:35 p.m.
Bryan Baugh Sandy Erwin