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A regular meeting of the Planning Board of the Township of Roxbury was held on the above dated at 7:30 p.m. with Vice Chairman Larry Sweeney presiding.  After a salute to the flag, Mr. Sweeney read the “Open Public Meetings Act”.


BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT:  Larry Sweeney, Steven Alford, Charles Bautz, Michael Shadiack, Richard Zoschak, Jim Rilee, Joseph Schwab.


ABSENT:  Scott Meyer, Gary Behrens, Robert DeFillippo.


PROFESSIONAL STAFF PRESENT:  Tom Germinario, John Hansen for Paul Ferriero, Russell Stern.


Also present:  Lorraine Mullen for Dolores DeMasi.


Minutes of 3/21/07


Mr. Rilee made a motion to approve the minutes.  Mr. Zoschak seconded.


Roll as follows:  Mr. Rilee, yes; Mr. Zoschak, yes; Mr. Schwab, yes; Mr. Shadiack, yes; Mr. Bautz, yes; Mr. Sweeney, yes.


Minutes of 4/4/07


Mr. Zoschak made a motion to approve the minutes.  Mr. Schwab seconded.


Roll as follows:  Mr. Zoschak, yes; Mr. Schwab, yes; Mr. Rilee, abstain; Mr. Shadiack, yes; Mr. Bautz, abstain; Mr. Sweeney, yes.






                                               ROXBURY TOWNSHIP PLANNING BOARD


                                                                   RESOLUTION OF MEMORIALIZATION


  Denied:  April 18, 2007

 Memorialized:  May 2, 2007




BLOCK 5203, LOT 50



WHEREAS, Scott Construction (hereinafter known as the "Applicant") applied to the Roxbury Township Planning Board (hereinafter known as the "Planning Board") for minor subdivision approval on April 5, 2006; and


WHEREAS, the Applicant has failed to appear for a number of scheduled hearings and/or has failed to submit required information and/or plan revisions.


NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Planning Board does hereby deny the application without prejudice.


The undersigned does hereby certify that the foregoing is a true copy of the action taken by the Planning Board at its regular meeting of 4/18/07.


Mr. Rilee made a motion to approve the resolution.  Mr. Bautz seconded.


Roll as follows:  Mr. Rilee, yes; Mr. Bautz, yes; Mr. Schwab, yes; Mr. Zoschak, yes; Mr. Shadiack, yes; Mr. Sweeney, yes.






John Doonan was present.  He stated he owns property on Eyland Avenue.  There is a single family house there, and I am looking to keep the present house and subdivide the lot to build another home on the second lot.  I would need a variance for lot frontage on both lots.  I would like to keep the barn on the existing lot with the existing home and obtain a lot area variance on the first lot.


Mr. Stern stated a lot width variance would be required as well as lot frontage.  There is also a question regarding sideyard setback for the side where the porch is located.  A variance may also be required for impervious coverage.  For the new home parcel, a variance will be required for lot width and lot frontage.


Mr. Zoschak asked if that would be creating a flag lot.


Mr. Stern said they are not expressively permitted in the R-3 zone.  This would not trigger a use variance.


Mr. Rilee said normally we don’t approve variance for half the frontage required.  


Mr. Doonan said we are expecting our first child.  My choices are to seek this subdivision and build another house.  We are in an historic zone, and I would like to keep the house in the general shape it is in.  I like the area, and the characteristic of the neighborhood is that 16 of the 27 houses are substandard with less than 200 feet of frontage.  In the back, all the areas except for the northernmost boundary are natural borders with trees and bushes.  I plan on keeping that and even reinforcing it.  It wouldn’t impact the neighborhood visually or aesthetically.


Mr. Alford asked if Mr. Doonan would be looking to sell the current home.


Mr. Doonan said he would think about selling it and possibly keeping it within the family.  I do not want to rent it out. 


Mr. Zoschak said the Board doesn’t normally grant variances such as this.  The town is trying to avoid infill housing.  To get all these variances you would need to show a hardship and I don’t see a hardship.  There is plenty of room to expand the existing house.  Also, that would be a long driveway.


Mr. Doonan said if he took the porch off, and added the barn, he would just need the lot width variance.


Mr. Stern said you may still require a variance for impervious coverage.


Mr. Rilee said there are a lot of variances.


Mr. Sweeney said the Board does not generally grant substandard lots. 




Attorney Larry Kron represented the applicant.


Grayson Murray, engineer for the applicant, was sworn in.  He stated the application is for a soil moving permit.  There is a total cut to fill operation of 4,863 cy.  The dump site will be in Mount Hope.  The route of travel will be Route 46 to Howard Blvd. to Rt. 80.  The number of trucks for earth export will be 27 trucks.   Welding quarries will be utilized for stone and sand material during construction. The actual quantity to be exported is 450 cy.  We have received Mr. Ferriero’s report, and agree to the hours of operation required 8-4 weekdays and Saturdays 8-12.  There will be about 2 to 3 truckloads per day for about two months.  We concur with all other items in Mr. Ferriero’s report.




No one stepped forward.




Mr. Rilee made a motion to approve the application subject to the hours of operation and route of travel and all items discussed.  Mr. Zoschak seconded.


Roll as follows:  Mr. Rilee, yes; Mr. Alford, yes; Mr. Shadiack, yes; Mr. Zoschak, yes; Mr. Schultz, yes; Mr. Bautz, yes; Mr. Sweeney, yes.




Mr. Kron said the preliminary approval was conditional on the applicant receiving a TWA for the sewer connection.  When the applicant started the process to get the sewer connection, it was found that with the original easement for the sewer line on Block 6601, Lot 32, there was no recorded sewer easement.  We were able to get the actual easement for the sewer line that runs along that property.  As a result, we have been delayed about 90 to 120 days.  We have gotten an agreement from GA Development and BJs, and have submitted the TWA to the town to be approved and sent to DEP.  It will take about 45 to 60 days after that to get the TWA.  We would like to request that the Board consider amending the resolution to allow us to proceed with construction at our own peril. 


Mr. Germinario said if it is a significant change to the resolution it requires public notice and a hearing. 


Mr. Rilee suggested the applicant submit a letter and we can be prepared to address it at the next hearing.


Mr. Kron agreed.


Mr. Germinario will review the resolution and contact the applicant in the meantime.


It was determined this matter will be on the agenda for the 5/16/07 meeting.




Attorney Larry Kron represented the applicant.


Grayson Murray, engineer for the applicant, was sworn in.


Mr. Kron stated this application is for final site plan approval.   We have received a report from Paul Ferriero dated 4/24/07 and will address those items that are considered Public Health and Safety concerns.


Mr. Murray stated item 58 has been completed.  There is a potential problem with item 42 – the porous pavement has deteriorated, and we need to determine the scope of the repair work that is needed.


Mr. Hansen recommended that we meet out there within the township engineer and applicant’s engineer to see what kind of repair work and maintenance needs to be done.


Mr. Bautz asked for comment from the applicant’s engineer.




Mr. Murray stated we would agree to meet in the field.  I did see that some of the aggregate has come loose.  I think we need to meet at the site to discuss this and to have a condition that this concern be satisfied.


Mr. Hansen said the extent of what needs to be done is not clear at this time.  The worst case scenario is that it has to be taken out and redone. 


Mr. Bautz asked why this hasn’t been addressed before coming to the Board.


Mr. Murray said it is not clear the severity of the problem.


Mr. Kron asked that the Board consider authorizing Mr. Germinario to prepare a resolution before the next hearing.


Mr. Zoschak said he is not comfortable with that as Mr. Hansen said it is not clear what has to be done until after they meet at the site.


Mr. Rilee said he is not in favor of preparing the resolution in advance of the approval.  I would also see the list of outstanding items reduced for the next hearing. 


Mr. Hansen said item 4 discusses trees that were cut down along Route 46.  What will be done with that area?  It is somewhat close to the wetlands there.


Mr. Murray stated that is at the intersection of the driveway and Rt. 46.  It is within the regulated area of the buffer.  DEP requested that be done for visibility of the sign and they understood it would be acceptable.  Some stumps remain and some are exposed.  We can cut the stumps down flush with grade, but can’t disturb soil in that area.


Mr. Hansen asked if there was a permit from DEP.


Mr. Murray said DEP came to the site and accepted the activity.  We do have documentation.


Mr. Hansen said that documentation should be submitted to the Board.


Mr. Rilee said permission should also have been obtained from the town.


Mr. Hansen stated another issue is the detention basin.  There is rip-rap that was placed on the wall of the basin to handle soil erosion control problems.  They feel it is necessary to remain. I don’t dispute that, but the Board should be aware that is what it will look like.


Mr. Murray said the rip-rap needs to remain.


Mr. Stern suggested additional evergreens in the vicinity and maybe more plantings along Route 46 to block off the view to the basin.


Mr. Germinario stated he reviewed the easements that were required.


Mr. Kron said all the easements were approved by Mr. Bucco.


Mr. Stern said there was an issue regarding the septic treatment facility.  Originally the two tanks were slightly above grade.  A lot more above ground structures went in and they are within view from the parking area.  It is up to the Board whether that area should be screened further.


Mr. Murray said there is a slight change in elevation. The maintenance shed was shown and was over the setback line.  We had to relocated it to avoid a variance.  When we moved it and screened it, the separation distance between the shed and the equipment exceed the distance needed for the equipment to comply with the electrical code.  This is significantly out of public view from the roadway.


Mr. Stern stated it is internal to the site, but I think the screening should be enhanced somewhat.


Mr. Zoschak suggested the plantings be left up to Mr. Stern’s judgment.


The applicant agreed.


Mr. Rilee stated he is more concerned with the view of the front of the site.  I would suggest Mr. Stern go out and come up with suggestions.


The application was carried to 5/16/07




Attorney Larry Kron represented the applicant.  He said the Board had heard an application on this lot and an adjoining lot two years ago.  That applicant never went to completion and the Board denied it with prejudice. This application is different  as the building footprint has been reduced from 1,980 sq. ft. to 1,200 sq ft. out of the steep slopes area; the number of bedrooms has been reduced from 4 to 3; there is a reduction of the building area; redesigned septic system;  impervious coverage has been reduced from 3,220 sq. ft. to 2,770 sq. ft.; stormwater management facility is now in the front yard, not in the rear yard.  I don’t believe there is any issue of res judicata that would apply.


Mr. Germinario stated he finds there are significant differences between this application and the previous application.  Measures have been taken in this application to reduce the slope disturbance, and I agree res judicata does not preclude moving forward with consideration of this application.


Mr. Stern said one representation is that the size of the home has been significantly reduced.  Would it be reasonable for the Board to limit the size of the building?


Mr. Germinario said yes.


Mr. Rilee stated it was not denied strictly on the steep slope ordinance.  There were significant drainage issues on this application as well.


Mr. Germinario stated that is correct, but if there is a substantial change to one of the factors,  res judicata does not apply.


Mr. Kron said the prior application also involved Lot 14.  Apparently Lot 14 is now owned by the township.  I did offer to purchase that lot on behalf of the applicant, and the township would not sell the lot to us. 


Mr. Kron submitted a copy of that correspondence dated 3/21/06 to the Township Manager (marked A-1); and a letter dated 4/4/06 from Cris Raths to Mr. Kron advising that the Mayor and Council have always taken a position not to sell lots when combined with other lots to facilitate construction (marked A-2); and a letter dated 5/1/06 indicating the Council has determined that the sale of Block 9707, Lot 14 is not in the best interest of the Township (marked A-3).


Mr. Kron said part of Roosevelt Way is serviced by Mt. Arlington in an agreement with Roxbury.  There was a letter dated 5/1/07 from the Mayor of Mt. Arlington indicating the Borough of Mt. Arlington recently reconstructed Roosevelt Way to a 16 foot wide paved street that provides more than adequate space for residents, emergency responders and maintenance personnel.  It is requested that Roxbury recognize the merits of the applicant installing a turnaround for public use.  The Borough is in full support of the application with the understanding that a turnaround area will be provided.  The Borough will also commit to plowing the new section of the roadway to access the turnaround area.  This section of Roxbury Township will be part of the shared services arrangement that the towns benefit from.


Anthony Gallerano, engineer for applicant, was sworn in and gave his educational and professional background and was accepted by the Board.


Mr. Gallerano described the project.  He referred to a color rendering of the plot plan. (marked A-4) revised 11/29/06.  He stated the lot is on the unimproved portion of Roosevelt Way.  The proposal is for a single family dwelling with improvements to Roosevelt Way.   The property is 15,220 sq. ft and is in the R-3 district.    The property conforms with all bulk requirements, except for a variance request for steep slopes. 


Mr. Kron asked about the road and Mr. Kobylarz’ report. 


Mr. Gallerano stated we thought it would be appropriate to maintain the existing width of the road.  Presently Roosevelt Way is paved and is 16 feet wide.  The area in front of the lot is unimproved.  The 16’ paved road would be an improvement over what exists.  Right now there is no means to turn around at the end of Roosevelt Way, and the hammerhead will provide adequate turnaround space.  That is acceptable to Mt. Arlington.  The applicant is agreeable to give an easement to the town for the purpose of the hammerhead turn.  Currently the existing portion of the road is not curbed and we don’t see a benefit to extending it here and are asking for a design waiver. 


Mr. Hansen asked if there is a portion of Roosevelt that is curbed.


Mr. Gallerano said there is a portion that is bituminous curbed.


Regarding Item #3 in Mr. Kobylarz’s report, Mr. Gallerano said initially 3 seepage pits were proposed on the property.  We now show a redesign of the drainage system.  We are now proposing to maintain seepage pits for onsite runoff, and to install a recharge system within the Roosevelt Way right-of-way.  An inlet would be installed at the end of Roosevelt Way, then there would be a recharge pipe extending beyond that to a control structure where the road makes a 90 degree turn.  We would then install an overflow pipe that would go along the remainder of the unimproved portion of Roosevelt Way to a scour hole.  The pipe would provide for overflow in case of an emergency.  The recharge system would accommodate 100% of the runoff, as would the seepage pits on site.  We would also install an overflow pipe into the seepage pits into the recharge system.


Mr. Bautz asked if the existing properties have overflow on them now.


Mr. Gallerano said all the runoff from the site currently drains in a westerly direction.  Our system would accommodate any increase in runoff.


Mr. Zoschak asked if this system would be mitigating any of the existing drainage situation?


Mr. Gallerano said yes, we would direct all the roof leaders to the seepage pits.


Mr. Kron asked Mr. Gallerano to discuss the steep slopes variance.


Mr. Gallerano said the topography is such that in order to build on the property, there will be disturbance to the slopes.  We have tried to minimize the disturbance.  The house is a modest size house at 1,200 sq. ft.  The septic system uses trenches instead of beds.  The location of the house and improvements is such that it keeps it in the lesser slopes.  This existing condition presents a hardship to the applicant. 

Mr. Kron asked about the variance for building on an unimproved/unapproved street.


Mr. Gallerano stated this property fronts on the unimproved portion of Roosevelt Way.  We have designed the road with adequate access for emergency vehicles.  The hammerhead provides a turnaround and helps with snow plowing.  This will be a substantial improvement.  There will be no negative impact on adjoining properties because of the construction of this road. 


Mr. Zoschak said the previous application had a cul-de-sac.  What is there to prevent them from parking cars in the hammerhead?


Mr. Kron said there will be language in the easement to prohibit parking there.


Mr. Zoschak said that won’t stop people from parking there.


Mr. Kron said we could grant a right-of-way. 


Mr. Gallerano said there would be a deed restriction to prohibit parking there.  It is no different from people parking in a cul-de-ac.  It is an enforcement situation.




It was agreed it is a hard thing to enforce.  Mr. Rilee stated this is a dead end street, and I don’t believe it will be a problem.


Mr. Gallerano said there is adequate parking for 4 cars outside the hammerhead in the driveway in addition to the garage.


Mr. Kron said we would agree to accommodate the Board.


Mr. Gallerano said he believes that this would provide adequate access for emergency vehicles.  We are asking for a waiver from RSIS for the length of the roadway.  We feel the access we are providing is adequate.  We are also asking for waivers from curbs, sidewalks, and street trees to be consistent with what is there presently.


Mr. Gallerano stated we are also asking for a waiver from the setback requirement for the wall between the subject property and Lot 3.  That wall belongs to the owners of Lot 3 and encroaches on the subject property.  We moved that wall back to the property line to eliminate the encroachment.


There was a 5 minute recess at 9:05 p.m.


Mr. Kron asked if a fire truck can currently turn around on that street.


Mr. Gallerano said no.  Originally we were showing a dedication for a partial cul-de-sac.  The hammerhead was introduced by the planner and engineer.  We did not include that area in the calculations for steep slopes.  If we eliminate that dedication, and include that area in the calculations, it will lower the percentage of disturbance of steep slopes.  Therefore, the actual percentages will drop.  There is an added benefit by not constructing a partial cul-de-sac.  There would be less pavement, less runoff, less disturbance.  As a result of this change, the project is a better project.


Mr. Germinario said Mr. Kobylarz indicates snow plows will push the snow from Roosevelt Way and deposit it at the end of the road which would block the storm drain and exacerbate drainage concerns.


Mr. Gallerano said the storm drain is at the end of the road.  The goal when you plow is to free up the storm drainage.


Mr. Zoschak said that doesn’t happen in reality.


Mr. Gallerano said the idea is to push it off the road and to not block the storm drain.  There is adequate space to push the snow towards the end of Roosevelt Way. 


Mr. Stern said the guard rail at the end would inhibit the snow from going off the road.


Mr. Gallerano said the snow would go over the top of the guard rail.


Robert O’Donnell was sworn in. He said he is a principal in this application and is a builder.  He described the proposed house.  He said it is a 1,200 sq. ft. house including the garage, 3 bedrooms, a half-basement in the front.  The house is in keeping with the area.  It is not very large.  The first floor plan shows stairs going down.  We are not planning any exterior access from the basement.  We know we have to be 25 feet from the septic trenches for a full basement and we are trying to keep the basement toward the front of the building for that reason.  The exposed building foundation will be cement.  We would like to put a deck on the house, but we haven’t addressed that yet.  The runoff will be collected by seepage pits. 


Mr. Zoschak said he would like to get input from the Fire Official on the fire truck question.


Mr. Rilee stated he would also like input on drainage at the next hearing.




Judith Kracht stepped forward.  She said she has questions on the water there.  We run the water for 10 minutes and it goes away.  I have written my concerns down and I would like to put my concerns and questions on the record tonight.  I am on Lot 16.  This house is placed in my backyard.  Where is my privacy?  My house sits down from the road.  Will this road be done properly so that drainage does not come onto my property?  As to the hammerhead turn, how can you force people to let cars turn around in their driveway?  There are no police there to give tickets.  This is a very environmentally sensitive area.


Mr. Gallerano said we have a permit for the septic system from the Health Department.  A permit will have to be obtained for the well also.


Ms. Kracht asked where the well is.


Mr. Gallerano said it is in the front yard. 


Ms. Kracht stated that is in direct line with my well.


Mr. Germinario said when they permit wells, they do a drawdown test. Is that true?


Mr. Gallerano said there are regulations on separations between wells and septic systems. 


Ms. Kracht asked how electricity will go to the site?


Mr. Gallerano stated this issue is for the power company.  I believe if the existing power is overhead, the utility company can run it overhead. 


Ms. Kracht said the only electrical pole is in front of Lot 18 in Mt. Arlington.


Mr. Gallerano said that issue is for the power company.


Mr. Kracht asked if the road will be completed before the house is started, and will access to my house be blocked by flatbed trucks?  Also will this developer repair damage to Roosevelt Way from construction vehicles?  I would request that, if approved, my property, as well as my neighbor’s will not be blocked before or after construction.  I would like to see a resolution stating that at no time will my property or surrounding properties be blocked or denied access.  My main concern is the water and I hope the Board takes that into consideration.  There is not enough water to supply another house.


Mr. Kron did not object to marking Ms. Kracht’s concerns in to the record.  (marked O-1)


Mr. Zoschak asked where the snow goes now.


Ms. Kracht said she owns the house, but her son lives there.


John Kracht was sworn in.  He stated he lives there and the snow goes in the street.  Mt. Arlington does the plowing and the garbage pickup.  We don’t have a driveway and we park on the street.  There is also an access road.  Regarding plowing, right now than can turnaround in one driveway.  Mt. Arlington does the snow plowing and garbage pick up.  The children go to Roxbury schools.


Mr. Bautz asked if there is any runoff from the street onto the property.


Mr. Kracht said yes, but it is better now that they have redone the road. 


Mr. Rilee asked about a turnaround area on the Mt. Arlington section.


Mr. Kracht said there is a small turnaround that they made when they were paving the road.  Trucks back down the road after garbage pickups, and delivery trucks. 


Ms. Kracht said this house has been in our family for over 60 years.  We park at the top of the hill and walk down a pathway to the house.


Mr. Schultz asked if there are environmental issues with that lot.


Ms. Kracht asked if there is an engineering report ensuring that the current water problem will not get worse.  Has the Board considered the water impact on neighborhood if additional lots are open to development?  We all have problems with water.  My well is down 425 feet and if we run the water for more than 10 minutes the flow decreases drastically.  There is just so much water in this mountaintop.  It is an environmentally sensitive area.  To further compromise it would be a detriment to the public good.  Has the applicant proven to the Board that there will be no disruption of our water after the construction?  It is such a large house.  It has 3 bathrooms, a laundry room and a kitchen, and a big green lawn proposed.


Mr. Hansen said our report dated 4/20/07 has the same concerns, and additional grading details are needed in front of Lot 16 to ensure that the road design can be done without an adverse impact on the dwelling.  The plans need to be finalized.


Mike Menendez, 22 Harriet Way, was sworn in.  I have concerns about the water issue.  I have already had to drill my well down.  I want to make sure them building just above me won’t affect my water.  Also, I am not sure how the runoff will affect me.  Right now there are deer and animals there, and I am concerned that will be affected as well.


Mr. Gallerano stated the stormwater will be addressed.  As to the well, that is under the jurisdiction of the Health Department and Fire Official.


Mr. Menendez asked if the Health Department is aware of the water issues. 


Mr. Hansen said there would be a State well permit application to the DEP, and if it is issued they will drill the well.  The only way to determine if there is adequate water is to hire a hydrogeologist. 


No one else stepped forward.




The application was carried to 6/20/07.


The meeting was adjourned by motion at 9:45 p.m.


                                                            Dolores A. DeMasi, Board Secretary