Granville Community Calendar

Planning Commission Minutes August 24, 2015

GRANVILLE PLANNING COMMISSION

August 24, 2015

7:00 pm

Minutes

 

Call to Order:  Mr. Hawk (Chair) called the meeting to order at 7 p.m.

 

Members Present:  Mr. Burriss, Mr. Eklof (Vice Chair), Mr. Hawk (Chair), Mr. Potaracke, Mr. Wilken, Tim Klingler (non-voting ex officio member GEVSD) and Jackie O’Keefe (non-voting ex-officio member).

Members Absent: None.

Staff Present:  Alison Terry, Planning Director and Michael King, Law Director.

 

Also Present:  Jonathon Sosebee, Adam Johnson, Jeff Mullett, William Hoekstra, and Ryan Pearson.

 

Citizens’ Comments:  None.

 

New Business:

 

403 East Broadway – Jonathon Sosebee & Adam Johnson - Application #2015-110: The property is zoned Suburban Residential District-B (SRD-B) and is located within the Architectural Review Overlay District (AROD). The request is for architectural review and approval of the removal of aluminum siding on the entire structure and then refinishing the original wood siding. 

 

Swearing in of Witnesses: Mr. Hawk swore in Jonathon Sosebee, Adam Johnson and Alison Terry.

 

Discussion:

Adam Johnson, 403 East Broadway, indicated he would like to remove the atrocious metal siding from the home and refinish the original wood siding.  He has checked the cedar siding in three places and it appears to be sound.  Staff recommends the project.  The board members had no questions and were pleased with the project.

 

The Planning Commission reviewed the standards and criteria pertaining to Application #2015-110:

 

a)         Is stylistically compatible with other new, renovated and old structures in the Village District?  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE; the project is similar to other projects that have been approved in the District.   All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

 

b)         Contributes to the improvement and upgrading of the historical character of the Village District.  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE, the proposed removal of the aluminum siding and restoration of original wood siding contribute to the upgrading of the home and therefore improve and upgrade the overall District.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

 

c)         Contributes to the continuing vitality of the District.  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE, the restoration of the original materials contribute to the vitality of a historic home with accurate improvements and contribute to the vitality of the District overall.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

 

d)         Protects and enhances examples of the physical surroundings in which past generations livedMr. Burriss stated TRUE; that the restoration of the original materials protects and enhances the physical surroundings in which past generations lived.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss. 

 

Mr. Wilken made a motion to approve Application #2015-110 as submitted.  Second by Mr. Potaracke.  Roll Call Vote to Approve Application #2015-110:  Burriss (Yes), Eklof (Yes), Potaracke (Yes), Wilken (Yes) and Hawk (Yes).  Motion Carried 5-0.

 

201 North Pearl Street – Jeff Mullett - Application #2015-111: The property is zoned Village Residential District (VRD) and is located within the Architectural Review Overlay District (AROD).  The request is for architectural review and approval of the following improvements:

1)         Replacement of all windows on the first and second floor, except for the garage; and

2)         Replacing the front door on the Pearl Street entry and the door to the basement in the courtyard. 

Swearing in of Witnesses: Mr. Hawk swore in Jeff Mullett and Alison Terry.

 

Discussion:

Jeff Mullett, 201 North Pearl Street, stated the project is to replace the windows except for the mother in law suite section.  The existing windows have inconsistent storm windows, old lead glass and cracks in places.  He plans to paint the house next year.  The windows would be wooden double-hung and Staff indicated approval.

 

The Planning Commission reviewed the standards and criteria pertaining to Application #2015-111:

 

a)         Is stylistically compatible with other new, renovated and old structures in the Village District?  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE; the project is similar to other projects that have been approved in the District.   All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

b)         Contributes to the improvement and upgrading of the historical character of the Village District.  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE; the proposed improvements contribute to the upgrading of the historical appearance of the home and therefore improve and upgrade the overall District.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

 

c)         Contributes to the continuing vitality of the District.  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE; the materials and design selected contribute to the vitality of a historic home with historically accurate improvements and contribute to the vitality of the District overall.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

 

d)         Protects and enhances examples of the physical surroundings in which past generations livedMr. Burriss stated TRUE; the proposed application is historically accurate and architecturally appropriate with the surrounding area and thereby improves the home with historically accurate materials and improvements which protect the physical surroundings in which past generations lived.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss. 

 

Mr. Wilken made a motion to approve Application #2015-111 as submitted.  Second by Mr. Potaracke.  Roll Call Vote to Approve Application #2015-111:  Eklof (Yes), Potaracke (Yes), Wilken (Yes), Burriss (Yes) and Hawk (Yes).  Motion Carried 5-0.

 

133 South Prospect Street – William & Mary Hoekstra- Application #2015-112: The property is zoned Village Business District (VBD) and is located within the Architectural Review Overlay District (AROD).  The request is for architectural review and approval of the removal of the existing brick retaining wall along Elm Street and replacement with Briar Hill Sandstone. 

Swearing in of Witnesses: Mr. Hawk swore in Bill Hoekstra and Alison Terry.

 

Discussion:

Bill Hoekstra, 133 South Prospect Street, stated he would like to remove the deteriorating brick retaining wall and replace it with a more historically correct sandstone wall.  It would remain the same elevation and the same length. 

 

Planner Terry commented the Village Council will be reviewing the project because it is in the right-of-way.

 

The Planning Commission reviewed the standards and criteria pertaining to Application #2015-112:

 

a)         Is stylistically compatible with other new, renovated and old structures in the Village District?  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE; the proposed retaining wall replacement is in keeping with the style and architecture of the building and the surrounding area and is similar to other projects which have been approved previously.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

 

b)         Contributes to the improvement and upgrading of the historical character of the Village District.  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE; the proposed material for the retaining wall replacement contributes to the upgrading of the property and therefore the District overall.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

 

c)         Contributes to the continuing vitality of the District.  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE; that as above in item b, the proposed design and materials are consistent and as a major business and home therefore contribute to the vitality of the District overall.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

 

d)         Protects and enhances examples of the physical surroundings in which past generations lived.  Mr. Burriss stated TRUE; the proposed retaining wall replacement is consistent and historically correct with other projects previously approved in the District, thereby protecting the physical surroundings in which past generations lived.  All other members concurred with Mr. Burriss.

 

Mr. Wilken made a motion to approve Application #2015-112 as submitted.  Second by Mr. Potaracke.  Roll Call Vote to Approve Application #2015-112:  Potaracke (Yes), Wilken (Yes), Burriss (Yes), Eklof (Yes) and Hawk (Yes).  Motion Carried 5-0.

 

1500 Weaver Drive – Raccoon Creek Senior Housing, LLC - Application #2015-114: The property is zoned Village Gateway District (VGD).  The request is for review and approval of additional sidewalks, landscaping and signage.

Swearing in of Witnesses: Mr. Hawk swore in Ryan Pearson, and Alison Terry.

 

Discussion:

Ryan Pearson of the Edge Group, 330 West Spring Street, Suite 350, Columbus, Ohio, stated he represents Raccoon Creek Senior Housing, LLC. He is seeking to landscape two main courtyards, one for the memory group and one for another courtyard.  A northwest corner will be used for gardening, next to Columbus Road.  The landscaping will consist of indigenous trees, viburnum, and boxwood. 

 

Mr. Hawk had a question about the proposed sidewalks and access and Planner Terry said that the sidewalk plans are to link service areas and doorways.  Concrete and brick pavers would be used and meet all criteria.  Mr. Hawk asked about the concrete finish on the sidewalks and Mr. Pearson replied it would probably be a brush finish.  The fire lane would be crushed stone, asphalt or gravel.

 

Mr. Burriss asked about previous discussion concerning a screen of trees between Columbus Road and the buildings.  Planner Terry indicated they’re still providing screening in this area; they’ve just increased the landscaping and added walkways between the assisted living facility and the emergency access lane to the west for emergency services.  

 

In response to a question by Mr. Wilken, Mr. Pearson clarified that retail parcels adjacent to the property and to the west would be developed additionally.  Ms. O’Keefe asked if the parcels would be related to the senior apartments and Mr. Pearson replied it is unknown at this time.  

 

Mr. Wilken asked about the bridge over the culvert and Planner Terry said it will have a wooden guardrail and this curb cut will serve both the assisted living and commercial properties.  Mr. Hawk stated that he liked the choice of landscaping plants. 

 

Mr. Wilken made a motion to approve Application #2015-114 as submitted.  Second by Mr. Potaracke.  Roll Call Vote to Approve Application #2015-114:  Eklof (Yes), Wilken (Yes), Burriss (Yes), Potaracke (Yes) and Hawk (Yes).  Motion Carried 5-0.

 

Other Business:

 

Review of Proposed Code Chapter, to establish Chapter 523, Property Maintenance Code, to the Codified Ordinances of the Village  

Law Director King opened remarks by discussing the rationale behind establishing a property maintenance code.  He indicated when a violation has been detected and has not been corrected through informal remediation (as is done now) the Village would work with the property owner rather than posting notices and taking legal action. He indicated remediation is remedy of the problem through actual correction. 

Mr. Wilken indicated protective covenants are already in place for the majority of the newer subdivisions – Bryn Du, the Colony, Donald Ross condominiums, Erinwood, Village Green, etc.; so the majority of the population are already covered.  If the Village enacts this Ordinance Homeowner’s may attempt to bypass the contract law (deed restrictions) and go straight to the Village without utilizing the restrictive covenants, thereby undermining the deed restrictions and getting the Village involved in a legal battle they have no business being involved in.  He indicated the Village has not had significant issues in terms of property maintenance in the past.  This could cause the Village to incur a lot of legal fees trying to uphold this Code.  He asked if Council felt there was a real manifest problem at this point.  He encouraged Council to limit access to this Ordinance until any and all remedies had been exhausted to resolve the property maintenance issue.

 

Law Director King stated he was not concerned from a legal perspective regarding a Homeowner’s Association in terms of enforcement of the Code.  It would be treated the same whether the property was regulated under an HOA or not.  This is the area when it comes to case law and litigation these cases tend to be emotionally charged and litigation happens when neighbors disagree regarding the proper maintenance of properties.  He indicated he had drafted an ordinance that utilized a “scalpel” and not a “hatchet.”

 

Councilmember O’Keefe stated residents have mentioned aesthetic considerations be made within the Code, which she said would not be addressed under this ordinance. 

 

Law Director King agreed with Councilmember O’Keefe that this Ordinance was not drafted to address aesthetics.

 

Mr. Hawk asked if this was the proverbial “squeaky wheel” driving the need for a Property Maintenance Code, rather than actual issues within the Village proper.  He doesn’t think this Code is really necessary.

 

Law Director King indicated any currently non-complying properties will most likely be revitalized, mainly because of the strong real estate market in Granville.  He indicated the counterbalance to this is the LDS church property, which has been allowed to deteriorate to the point that it’s not salvageable.  This property was in such a state of disrepair that the Village had the right, under the Ohio Revised Code, to go in and secure the property with recoupment paid by the property owner.  There has been discussion regarding establishing an alternate program, such as a “Paint the Town Program,” which would address some of the property maintenance issues prior to a citation by the Village.

 

Planner Terry stated the proposed code will deal with safety and securing of properties, similar to the work that was completed by the Village at the LDS church property.  However, it would not require an aesthetically pleasing securing of a building in say the Historic District.  So, there could be boarding up of windows within the Historic District which would comply with the property maintenance code, but would not address the aesthetic concerns some residents have raised to Village Council.

 

Mr. Hawk asked Councilmember O’Keefe why the property maintenance code was back before the Planning Commission for review and what Council’s true interest was in this Code.

Councilmember O’Keefe stated that Law Director King had articulated the viewpoint of Council earlier in the meeting, and reiterated that Council doesn’t want a sledgehammer approach, Council wants a tool.

 

Mr. Hawk inquired whether this tool already exists.

 

Law Director King stated that really wasn’t accurate.  If the LDS church property would have been brought to the Village’s attention sooner, and a property maintenance code were in effect at that time, then that property may not have deteriorated to the point that it has.

Mr. Hawk asked if this Code would strengthen the ability to defend the Village.  Would the Village be better off than it is now?

Law Director King stated if the Village is going to have a Code, he feels it should be a narrow Code that has many of the items that the Ohio Supreme Court has said it’s okay to enforce and as few items as possible which have not been supported by the Ohio Supreme Court.

 

Councilmember O’Keefe stated the reason the Village even started looking at a Property Maintenance Code was because of the residents.  She indicated the Village officials need to listen to their residents. 

 

Mr. Wilken asked what role the other Licking County agencies have in regards to health, safety and welfare.

 

Law Director King indicated the Licking County Health Department and the Licking County Building Code Department can be involved in issues which affect the health, safety and welfare of Village residents.  A property maintenance code would allow for the Village to also step in, beyond what the LCHD and LCBD can enforce.

 

Mr. Wilken had a suggestion for the Commission and Village Staff.  He suggested that the areas already covered by deed restrictions and covenants be exempted.  For instance, could this code cover only the Historic District area?

 

Law Director King indicated the Village would not be able to apply this Code only to specific areas or specific districts that would be subject to an equal protection of due process challenge and the Supreme Court would not look favorably on that type of situation.

 

Law Director King indicated that it could not be applicable only to certain types of properties.

 

Planner Terry said the Council had requested the GPC address the question one more time before the public hearing. 

 

Councilmember O’Keefe said there will be two public hearings for this proposed Code.

 

Mr. Burriss made a motion to recommend approval to the Village Council of the Property Maintenance Code.  Seconded by Mr. Potaracke. 

 

Further discussion on the proposed motion:

Mr. Wilken stated he hopes Council has the courage to not enact legislation simply in response to a few “squeaky wheels.”  He stated that to a majority of Village residents this is not a problem.  There are some isolated cases and it’s not good public policy to adopt something to address just a few cases.

 

Roll Call Vote: Mr. Potaracke (no), Mr. Eklof (no), Mr. Burriss (no), Mr. Wilken (no) and Mr. Hawk (no).  Motion failed, 5-0.

 

Further discussion on the Property Maintenance Code:

Mr. Eklof indicated the subjective nature of the text troubles him (i.e. reference to peeling paint, etc.).  He stated where homes are owner occupied there may be issues related to a loss of job fixed income or some other circumstance which is legitimate which prevents the homeowner from rehabilitating their property.  This becomes troublesome if one of the neighbors is coming to the Village to lodge a complaint.  On the other hand, he’s noticed a lot of “for rent” signs cropping up in the Village and thinks if a home is not owner occupied and it’s basically a business then the neighborhood should have a protection against the owner allowing the property to be neglected.  He felt that maybe there should be a protection for that type of instance, but an owner occupied property should get assistance from neighbors and/or the Village to rehab the property in question. 

 

Law Director King stated on page 7 of the draft there is a paragraph which discusses a property owner and occupant being jointly responsible for the maintenance of the property.

 

Mr. Wilken inquired if this code could be applicable only to business properties?

 

Mr. Eklof expressed concerns that if this code were enforced in Court that some homeowner may be so negatively impacted that they may be forced to move or forfeit their home.  And that’s his objection to a property maintenance code.

 

Law Director King indicated that he supposed in the case of extreme violations of this Code that a home could potentially be forfeited. However, he didn’t see that happening.

 

Councilmember O’Keefe stated that Council has discussed a community outreach effort that could be utilized in conjunction with this Code to address property maintenance issues.

 

Mr. Wilken asked if there was a way to require business licensing for rental properties so the Village could identify properties that might be neglected. 

 

Planner Terry indicated that currently the Village does not require business licensing and it would be difficult for the Village to track who is renting single family structures, as opposed to them being owner occupied.

 

Law Director King encouraged the Commission members to attend the Village Council meeting on September 2nd and provide input during the Public Hearing session, not as representing the Planning Commission, but as individual members and Village residents.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finding of Fact Approvals:

 

New Business:

 

a)         Application #2015-110, Jonathon Sosebee & Adam Johnson; 403 East Broadway; Exterior Remodeling: Approve Findings of Fact and Associated Standards and Criteria.  The Planning Commission found the request to be consistent with The Granville Codified Ordinances Chapter 1161, Architectural Review Overlay District (AROD) and Chapter 1163, Suburban Residential District-B (SRD-B) and hereby gives their approval of Application #2015-119.

            Mr. Eklof moved to approve the Findings of Fact for Application #2015-110 as presented.  Seconded by Mr. Wilken. Roll call vote:  Wilken (Yes), Burriss (Yes), Eklof (Yes), Potaracke (Yes) and Hawk (Yes).  Motion Carried 5-0.

 

b)         Application #2015-111, Jeff Mullett; 201 North Pearl Street; Window & Door ReplacementsApprove Findings of Fact and Associated Standards and Criteria.  The Planning Commission found the request to be consistent with The Granville Codified Ordinances Chapter 1159, Village Residential District (VRD) and Chapter 1161, Architectural Review Overlay District (AROD) and hereby gives their approval of Application #2015-111.

 

            Mr. Eklof moved to approve the Findings of Fact for Application #2015-111 as presented.  Seconded by Mr.  Wilken. Roll call vote: Burriss (Yes), Eklof (Yes), Potaracke (Yes), Wilken (Yes) and Hawk (Yes).  Motion Carried 5-0.

 

c)         Application #2015-112, William & Mary Hoekstra; 133 South Prospect Street; Retaining Wall Replacement: Approve Findings of Fact and Associated Standards and Criteria.  The Planning Commission found the request to be consistent with The Granville Codified Ordinances Chapter 1159, Village Business District (VBD) and Chapter 1161, Architectural Review Overlay District (AROD) and hereby gives their approval of Application #2015-112. 

 

            Mr. Eklof moved to approve the Findings of Fact for Application #2015-112 as presented.  Seconded by Mr. Wilken.  Roll call vote:  Eklof (Yes), Potaracke (Yes), Wilken (Yes), Burriss (Yes), and Hawk (Yes).  Motion Carried 5-0.

 

d)         Application #2015-114, Raccoon Creek Senior Housing, LLC; 1500 Weaver Drive; Sidewalks, Landscaping & Signage: Approve Findings of Fact and Associated Standards and Criteria.  The Planning Commission found the request to be consistent with The Granville Codified Ordinances Chapter 1173, Village Gateway District (VGD) and hereby gives their approval of Application #2015-114. 

 

            Mr. Eklof moved to approve the Findings of Fact for Application #2015-114 as presented.  Seconded by Mr. Wilken.  Roll call vote:  Eklof (Yes), Potaracke (Yes), Wilken (Yes), Burriss (Yes), and Hawk (Yes).  Motion Carried 5-0.

 

Motion to approve the Planning Commission Meeting Minutes from August 10, 2015:  Mr. Wilken made a motion to approve the minutes from the August 10, 2015 Planning Commission Meeting.  Seconded by Mr. Potaracke.  Motion carried 5-0.

Meeting Announcements – next meetings:

September 14, 2015

September 28, 2015

October 13, 2015 (Tuesday)

Mr. Hawk declared the Planning Commission meeting adjourned seeing as there was no further business before the Commission.

Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned at 8:26 p.m.

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