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4. Buildable Land Area

Question 4: Set backs are based on total lot size regardless of the buildable land area so it forces the waterfront property owner to apply for variances in every case. Why or why not would you support a correction to the town zoning regulations to remedy this?


Albie Dekerillis

Albie DeKerillis: Many properties in town are unique in their own way. As a result, zoning should be more flexible to the home property owner, so that they may fully enjoy their home. The bottom line is that you
should not have to wait two to three years for simple home construction no matter where you live. I will work with the different town boards and departments to help streamline the planning, approval, and building process. My goal is to give property owners have a road map to follow, one that is clearly defined, with no inter-departmental overlap.

Albert Krupski Jr.

Albert Krupski Jr.: I would support a correction of the town zoning code as it relates to setbacks relating to lot lines vs bulkheads vs natural protective features that would simplify and streamline the bureaucratic process. This issue has been discussed at code committee meetings, with Trustees, and ZBA members. No solutions were found, but it is an issue that still needs attention.

Christopher Talbot

Christopher Talbot: It is my position that setbacks should be based on buildable land area.

Jeri Woodhouse: I would support an evaluation of the town zoning regulations as they pertain to formulas for set backs in relation to buildable land area. In addition, it is important for one to have a clear understanding of the functions of the ZBA and the wetlands code to clarify the role of each as it applies to this question.


Louisa P. Evans

Louisa P. Evans: Set backs are based on zoning, not the size of the property. The bulk schedule shows the set backs for each zone. Within the zones each property is unique. I am not sure there is a correction to the zoning code that would create less of a need for variances, but I am always open to code changes that would make the application process easier for the applicant while still preserving the town’s goals.

Dan Ross: On Setbacks, I think you are suggesting that the applicable set backs should be based on a lot’s buildable acreage and not its total acreage. The code was amended to provide that lot coverage would be based on the buildable acreage rather than total acreage which, I suggest, is a precedent for your suggested approach. I would not be opposed to consideration of amendments to the code along these lines.


David Bergen

David Bergen: Set backs are an issue which more often involves the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) rather then the Trustees. We have seen many property owners be directed to the ZBA process regarding swimming
pools and what is interpreted as front, rear or side yard issues. The challenge faced is the backlog of cases resulting in months of waiting for a ZBA hearing. I recommend that the Town Board consider the implementation of a ZBA process where there is no limit to the number of applications which will go before the Board each month, similar to the process followed by the Trustees. It does not matter to us if
there are six cases or thirty six cases to be heard at a public hearing. The public deserves a process where their case can be heard and a determination can be rendered in one month, not multiple months.

John Bredemeyer

John Bredemeyer: As a former Trustee and a marine researcher, I believe that minimal disturbance zones and quality native plantings are much more important than set backs per se and think the issue should be
investigated by the Town Board with input from the Trustees and other town departments.

Jill Doherty: Set backs in relation to total lot size falls under the Zoning Board of Appeals codes. That being said, I do believe there are areas of the zoning code that over lap the Trustee code. As it is part of the checks and balances of government, it is also a frustrating process for the home owner. I would encourage the Town Board to review the similarities in these sections of the code and make them more uniform or have only one board review that section. This would streamline the application process, which would benefit us all.
Candidates for Trustee: Ed Harbes, Audrey Horton and Karl Spielmann did not respond to our questions. Candidates who did not respond before press time are welcome to add their answers below using the comment box. SoutholdVOICE members are also welcome to post their comments below. Please stay on topic and start new topics in the forum! Thanks.


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