Minutes posted at this web site have not been checked for consistency with the printed minutes that are available in the Wilton Town Offices. If you need the definitive minutes of a ZBA meeting, please obtain the printed minutes from the town offices.
March 11, 2014
|Board Members||Chairman Neil Faiman; members, Carol Roberts, Bill Carnduff, Joe Poisson, Andy Hoar and Alternate Joanna Eckstrom|
A MOTION was made by Mr. Hoar and Mr. Poisson to accept the minutes of February 11, 2014 with the following amendments:
- Change "Mr. Roberts" to "Ms. Roberts" throughout
Voting: 4 ayes; motion carried with Ms. Eckstrom and Mr. Faiman abstaining.
A MOTION was made by Mr. Carnduff and Mr. Hoar to accept the minutes of February 21, 2014 with the following amendments:
- Change "Mr. Roberts" to "Ms. Roberts" throughout
Voting: 5 ayes; motion carried with Ms. Eckstrom abstaining.
Case #3/11/14–1 — NTV, LLC
Ms. Roberts recused herself from the case and stepped off the Board as a voting member.
Mr. Griffith appeared before the Board for the applicant and requested that Mr. Faiman recuse himself this evening because he attended the previous Superior Court hearings dealing with this case. Mr. Faiman stated that he did not speak at the hearings, he only attended to listen. In response to a question from Mr. Griffith, Mr. Faiman stated that he has spoken to Town Counsel regarding this case but only with regard to procedure and that he regularly attends court proceedings that involve the town. Mr. Griffith stated that he finds it unbelievable that Mr. Faiman would attend proceedings as a member of the public.
Mr. Faiman polled the Board for their opinion as to whether he should recuse himself. Ms. Eckstrom stated that she thinks Mr. Faiman should step down. Mr. Hoar stated that he is unfamiliar with the history of this case with regard to the court proceedings. Mr. Carnduff stated that he feels that Mr. Faiman has integrity and therefore should sit. Mr. Faiman noted that whether or not he has integrity is irrelevant. In response to a question from Mr. Poisson, Mr. Faiman stated that decisions were made at the court hearing. Ms. Roberts stated that she feels Mr. Faiman should remain for this case. Mr. Faiman decided not to recuse himself.
In response to a question from Mr. Faiman, Mr. Carnduff explained that previous to this evening he asked John Shepardson, Wilton Building Inspector, what the impact of the references sited in this application were and Mr. Shepardson stated that he felt that the sited references were overridden by the Building Code. Mr. Carnduff polled the Board for their opinion as to whether he should recuse himself. In response to a question from Ms. Eckstom, Mr. Carnduff explained that he asked about the applicability of the fishing code and Mr. Shepardson said that other parts of the code override the fishing codes and therefore NTV, LLV required a Building Permit. Mr. Shepardson appeared before the Board and stated that he felt, during their previous conversation, that Mr. Carnduff might have already discussed the case with someone. Ms. Eckstrom and Mr. Hoar stated that they feel Mr. Carnduff should recuse himself. Mr. Faiman stated that he feels it was a lapse of judgment, although not terrible a terrible one, to ask about the case prior to the meeting and suggested that the question could have been answered during the meeting. Mr. Carnduff decided to recuse himself.
Mr. Hoar noted that he is friends with the applicant and questioned if he should recuse himself also. The Board did not feel he needed to.
Mr. Faiman explained to the applicant that, after the recusals, only four Board Members remained to hear the case this evening. He explained that the applicant still needs to receive three votes in favor and questioned if the applicant would like to defer the case to a later date.
Mr. Griffith stated that the contractor did not elicit the letter from the Mr. Shepardson and questioned if this case is even under the jurisdiction of the Zoning Board. He explained that the case was heard in Superior Court and that it was the court's suggestion that he go back to the Zoning Board, but he noted that Mr. Shepardson's letter does not qualify as a formal decision because no application was filed.
In response to a question from Mr. Faiman, Mr. Griffith decided not to proceed with the hearing this evening and asked that it be continued until May. Mr. Faiman stated that the case will be heard on May 18, 2014.
Mr. Griffith complained because Mr. Faiman sent out his own abutters notice rather than the one Mr. Griffith produced. Mr. Faiman asked the applicant to be aware that he seems to be starting to present his case and Mr. Shepardson will not have a chance to speak at this meeting. Mr. Faiman explained that when an application is submitted he reviews it and produces a public notice, as he did with this application. He further explained that he then emailed the public notice to the Board Members and to the applicant who revised the notice and asked that his version be used instead. Mr. Griffith stated that he felt the notice was biased and Mr. Faiman asked the Board to review the notice and decide if they feel it represents any bias. Mr. Hoar stated that he doesn't feel Mr. Faiman's notice was biased. Ms. Eckstrom stated that she thinks the notice might have been putting the cart before the horse as the applicant is not appealing a decision, as stated in the notice, because the applicant represents that no applicable decision was ever made.
Mr. Faiman explained that this case is an appeal of a letter that was written in 2012 and noted that appeals must be filed within 30 days of receiving the decision, however this application is the outcome of litigation between NTV, LLC and the town. He further explained that the court strongly recommended that the applicant go back to the Zoning Board for an Administrative Appeal. Mr. Griffith submitted the court decision and Mr. Faiman asked that the Board Members review it before the May meeting.
A MOTION was made by Ms. Carnduff and SECONDED by Mr. Poisson to adjourn the meeting.
Voting: 5 ayes; motion carried unanimously.
Chairman Faiman declared the meeting to be adjourned.
Heather Loewy Nichols