Dayton Planning Board

April 6, 2010


Members Present: Remi Caron (Chair), Dan Plourde, Dick Hall, Valerie Cole (Alt.)


Others Present: Jim Roberts (CEO), Joel Waterhouse, Kevin Cyr, Larry and Bonnie Lachance, Cindy Sweeney, Julie Tucker 



Dick Hall motioned  to approve the March 16, 2010 minutes. Dan Plourde seconded, all voted in favor.


New Business:

BONNIE AND LARRY LACHANCE, GOODWINS MILLS FOOD PANTRY: The Lachances would like to host the Goodwins Mills food pantry in an apartment attached to their house on Waterhouse Rd because the Town of Lyman sold the building in which the food pantry was located. This would be a temporary set-up until a more permanent location can be found. There are currently 72 families receiving services. They are allowed to come once a month: the food pantry is open two hours a week, from 9-11 AM on Wednesday, to distribute. The families do not all appear on the same week. Typically the first two weeks of the month are busier than the last two. Many of the clients are disabled and elderly. Clients come from Dayton, Lyman, and Arundel. The Lachances have approximately three acres: the house is 700 ft from one neighbor and 150 ft from the other.


Dick Hall confirmed that the pantry would be open eight hours a month and asked about parking. The Lachances explained that at most there would be seven cars at a time, although not all for the whole two hours. Volunteers stay for two hours but clients and people making donations are there for a shorter time. There is also a service van that arrives on a different day to unload food but is there less than a half-hour. Dick also expressed concern about parking during the winter when there may be snow banks on the road. The Lachances indicated they would consider plowing part of the lawn to accommodate cars if needed.


Julie Tucker asked if clients could be served from a town hall instead of a residence. Jim Roberts noted that the biggest problem would be storage. Having it at the Dayton Town Hall would limit the town’s ability to hold large meetings. Mrs. Tucker expressed concern that the temporary situation could be much longer: Joel Waterhouse agreed, saying that he isn't comfortable with that. Mrs. Tucker explained that her concern is about the traffic speeding by and the fact that there are children in the area. She asked if zoning allows this. Jim Roberts explained that it isn’t prohibited and that it is considered a community service, not a business.


Larry Lachance said that there would be space for the food pantry in Lyman’s Cousens School when it is renovated, although he has no idea of the construction schedule.


Dick Hall asked for clarification as to the residents’ concern. Joel Waterhouse said again that it is concern about safety and that this would be for a long period of time. He also expressed concern that if the economy worsens the number of clients may increase, leading to more hours. Bonnie Lachance explained that the state limits their open hours to two per week.


Remi Caron asked the abutters for their opinions. Kevin Cyr indicated that he was willing to give it a try for the present and would like the opportunity to come back to the Planning Board in three months to review.


Dick Hall asked if there were any reasons to deny. Jim Roberts noted that anyone having concerns or difficulties with this could ask to come before the Planning Board to address them. He noted it is difficult to put a time limit on this type of activity.


Julie Tucker expressed concern that it would be long term situation and also that there seems to be nothing to stop residents from doing whatever they want in their homes. Jim Roberts explained that residents can petition to change zoning. He also noted that if the pantry grows the Planning Board would revisit the issue, and if the pantry increases in size drastically they would have to find a larger place anyway.


Kevin Cyr asked if this happens and the abutters don't like it and there is nothing in the current code to have it moved, can it be changed retroactively? Jim Roberts explained that the Lachances would be grandfathered but if the pantry moved out they would not be able to move back in.


Board members looked through the zoning ordinances to find the closest permitted use category. Remi Caron noted that the nearest thing that would seem to apply is home occupation, and read the description. This does not really qualify as a business though, nor is it a non-profit club or organization. It is less impact than a home business. Board members will continue to look through ordinances. Members noted that the purpose of this meeting was to gather and research such information.


Dick Hall pointed out that the abutters and Planning Board members could meet again in 90 days to re-assess.

Bonnie Lachance stated her agreement to a 90 day review. Jim Roberts suggested that she should tell clients not to turn in neighbors’ driveways. All agreed to a meeting to re-assess on Tuesday, June 15, 2010.


Old Business:

US CELLULAR CELL PHONE TOWER, TARDIFF LANE: Bob Gashlin will appear before the Board on April 20, 2010 to further discuss mounting a microwave dish on the Tardiff Lane cell phone tower. He is changing the application from a temporary unit to permanent. The public hearing scheduled for April 6 was canceled but may be held at a later date.



Valerie J. Cole, Secretary



Remi Caron, Chair

COPIES TO: Jim Roberts, Code Enforcement Officer; Selectmen; and Tax Assessor