03/10- Minutes

DATE: March 9, 2010

PLACE: Town of Groveland Town Hall

TIME: 7:00 – 9:00PM






Craig Phelps

Town Board, AC Committee Chair

Burt Lyon

Town Board

Brad A. Macauley


Roger Haich

Planning Board

Tim Sullivan


Adam Meyer


Bill Koshara


Barb Koshara


Eric Grace

Genesee Valley Conservancy

Walt Kalina

CHA, Planner



PURPOSE: CHA conducted an Advisory Committee meeting to review the preliminary draft plan and seek comments from those in attendance.  



    • Walt Kalina began the meeting with a status check on any new farmland survey/questionnaires that may have been received since the last meeting in February. No new surveys have been received by the Town and so the summary write-up that exists at the end of Chapter 1 in the draft plan is essentially complete.
    • Walt indicated that an acknowledgements page will be prepared for the draft plan and asked that the committee review it to make sure no one that attended meetings is left out. We’ll utilize past sign-in sheets.
    • The committee and others in attendance were asked if they had a chance to review the preliminary draft that was given to them on February 16th and if anyone had any comments or questions on the chapters or maps. Some comments were received prior to the meeting. These were reviewed and briefly discussed. Bill Koshara provided a series of photos to the Committee for possible inclusion in the plan.
    • A lengthy discussion took place about the future land use map and the land use and zoning recommendations portion of the plan that is contained primarily within Chapter 4. A new future land use map was presented that highlights those farmland parcels that are considered to have high or moderately high farmland viability based on the criteria that was discussed at previous meetings and appears in Chapter 4 of the plan. The primary purpose of the future land use map is to illustrate the highest value productive farmlands within the Town, a primary goal of the plan. Those areas that may be less viable farmland may be more appropriate for other types of future growth and development. The future land use map provides some guidance to possibly encourage residential and other forms of development to occur along the Route 63 corridor especially at its northern and southern ends in Groveland. These are areas that provide highway access, some sewer and water infrastructure and some less viable farming areas that may be better suited for growth and development than the large contiguous areas of highly viable farmlands.
    • Walt indicated he needs to refine some of the discussion in Chapter 4 of the draft plan on zoning recommendations. There was discussion about how best to protect farmland and still allow for development by landowners. Zoning issues under consideration include the possibility of separating out the present Agriculture/Residential (AR) zone into two separate zoning districts, one Agricultural Protection Area (APA) district specifically intended to protect highly viable farmlands and an Agricultural/Residential (AR) district that essentially functions as it does at the present time. Permitted uses under the existing AR district should be revisited in order to protect adjacent residences and landowners from undesirable forms of land use. Things discussed for the APA district included establishing minimum/maximum lots sizes. Requiring larger buffers between APA and non-farm districts, adjusting setbacks, and considering some form of density averaging as is being done in other communities in New York State are possible zoning modifications that should be discussed in the future. Walt indicated he is researching some other ordinances and will provide some additional information to the Committee and in the next draft of the plan.
    • There was a suggestion that the document provide a recommendation that the Town proactively plan for future farmland protection, such as purchase of development rights, etc. by establishing and setting aside a local pool of funds through fees, bonding, etc. to be used in the future for conservation easements, etc.
    • The Lake Residential District needs to be placed back on the legend for the Future Land Use map, since the map will be a basis for future zoning modifications and should accurately reflect existing and future zoning.
    • Walt will revise the preliminary draft and get a revised version to the Town Clerk and the Committee in one to two weeks.
  • Next Meeting: The next meeting is tentatively scheduled as a Public Hearing on the draft plan to be held on the same night as the Town Board meeting on April 8, 2010 at 8pm. After comments are received from the public and stakeholder agencies the draft will be finalized.
  • Re: Public Hearing CHANGE of DATE on Draft Groveland Farmland Protection Plan

We have decided to postpone the Public Hearing that was tentatively scheduled for April 8th, 2010 until May 13th, 2010 to allow CHA, the planning consultants, more time to make the necessary revisions to the draft plan. This will also give the committee members adequate time to review those revisions prior to posting the draft plan on the Town’s website for public review prior to the hearing. In the interim CHA is attending a roundtable discussion with the American Farmland Trust and New York State Ag and Markets on March 31st, 2010 in Auburn, NY and participating in a seminar on farm-friendly zoning on March 24th. Information learned from both these farmland protection opportunities may prove to be valuable to Groveland’s planning process and become the basis for some of the revisions being considered. We want to make sure everyone is aware of this postponement and we would appreciate your passing along this information to others that may be interested in attending the Public Hearing.



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