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Regular Meeting – August 7, 2017

 Town of Homer Zoning Board of Appeals

Minutes for Monday, August 7, 2017 at 7:00pm

Board Members  (absent *)                                       Others Present

Gary Lawrence, Chairman                              Lindsay Andersen, Recording Secretary

Jon Miller                                                        John Daniels, CEO

Gary Sweeney                                                 Pat Snyder, Attorney

Ken Poole

Zachary Young

Daniel Gustafson*

Gerald Neuman

Public Attendance:  Johnathan Ferrari, Kevin Walsh

Public Hearing

Chairman Lawrence opened the public hearing for an application Diana McClure for area variances to subdivide an 11.3 acre parcel into 3 lots of approximately 3.6 acres and 1 lot of 1.5 acres. The property is located on Cosmos Hill Road and NYS Route 90.

Johnathan Ferrari stated that he is the architect representing Diana McClure. He presented a map to the board members in which he stated would be allowable and meets requirements but he stated that he felt the lots look very awkward and would not make sense to him.

He stated that the plan is to possibly develop 3 of the lots but mentioned there is not a definitive plan at this time. The applicant stated that there would be separate driveways from Cosmos Hill Road and there would not be a roadway.

Attorney Snyder reminded the applicant that the issue with the small lot is that the health department requires certain distances between the well and septic system and also adequate space for a replacement system if one should fail. That is the reason for the minimal lot size.

The applicants stated that they had spoken to the health department and were advised that there would be enough distance and that they were able to meet the minimum lot measurements. The applicants also stated that they did not have a plan or paperwork from the health department and the communication had been verbal and by email.

Member Miller asked the applicants where the septic was located on the property adjoining the proposed 1.5 acre lot. The applicants stated they are unaware of the location.

Attorney Snyder stated that approving the variance does not commit the health department to approving the well and septic site plan review but he does feel that it could create momentum to proceed with the building. He then read the email that was written to the applicants from Mike Ryan at the Cortland Health Department. The health department will require a plan by a professional engineer that demonstrates that all setback distances will be met. The board made it clear that the applicant is assuming the risk of this not being approved by the health department in the future.

Kevin Walsh stated that he resides at 4741 Cosmos Hill Road and he had to bring in several tons of sand to obtain an approved septic system when he built at his property which is located directly across the street. His septic system was quite costly and he wanted to advise them of his concerns prior to them possibly selling building lots.

With no further questions or comments from the public the public hearing was closed.

Regular Meeting

Chairman Lawrence opened discussion for the application by Diana McClure for area variances to subdivide an 11.3 acre parcel into 3 lots of approximately 3.6 acres and 1 lot of 1.5 acres. The property is located on Cosmos Hill Road and NYS Route 90.

Member Sweeney made the motion to grant the area variances to subdivide the property. Member Miller seconded the motion. Members discussed the health department’s right to grant a well and septic system permit for a smaller lot in this particular case and stated they felt that it would be at their discretion at the time there was such application.

Attorney Snyder asked the applicants if they had considered moving the lot line for the 1.5 acre lot at an angle to gain acreage and they stated they had not considered moving the proposed lot line.  They are in discussions with the adjoining neighbor and it might possibly be joined with the neighboring lot.

Attorney Snyder also advised the board that it is not necessary to fill out SEQR forms since this is a type 2 action under SEQR.

With members in favor saying “aye”, Member Neuman opposed and none abstained. The motion was carried 5,1,0.

Member Sweeney made the motion to approve the October 26, 2016 meeting minutes. Member Neuman seconded the motion. With all members in favor saying “aye”, none opposed and none abstained. The motion was carried unanimous 6,0,0.


The meeting was adjourned at 8:00pm.

Lindsay M. Andersen, Recording Secretary