Dayton Planning Board

April 9, 2013





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

Town Employees Present: Jim Roberts, CEO, Selectmen Ted Poirier and Jerry Taylor (as members of the audience)

Public: See attached list

Attachments: Letter from Michelle Thomas to Town dated November 15, 2012

Letter from Jim Roberts CEO to Paul Poirier dated November 19, 2012

Letter from Michelle Thomas to Town dated March 18, 2013

Maine DEP Oil and Hazardous Materials Report dated March 18, 2013


The public hearing started at 7:00 PM. Remi Caron explained that the Board will not draw conclusions or vote tonight. He asked Jim Roberts to explain the events leading to the public hearing, and asked Paul Poirier to address the issues. The public would then have a chance to comment and ask questions.


Jim Roberts summarized that on November 15 he received a letter from Michelle Thomas of 15 Kyle Drive detailing her concerns about Poirier’s truck business on Kyle Drive. He checked the property and decided there could be a couple of violations: the storage of trucks and the fact that business was being conducted in a residential zone. He sent Paul Poirier a letter on November 19th and Mr. Poirier then met with the Planning Board in March. At that point it was decided to hold a public hearing. After that initial meeting with Mr. Poirier, Jim Roberts then had a visit from Franki Delaney of Maine DEP who was investigating concerns about possible oil spills on the property. (See attachments)


Remi Caron noted that the Planning Board had a discussion with Paul Poirier in March regarding changes he could make at his property to minimize the effect on the neighbors. Paul Poirier explained that his business has outgrown the yard and now most of the trucks are located in Saco. He would like to keep the plow trucks in town as it is too far to travel to Saco in a snow storm. He has tried to be a good neighbor and wishes that people with concerns had addressed him face to face first. The DEP finding was that there is nothing of concern, although they have asked him to remove the above-ground fuel tanks by the end of May. The tanks have been dry for two years. He admitted that the equipment may produce oil drips, but feels it is something that happens under all trucks. What would be left are the plow trucks, which are on the road at all hours during storms. The drivers turn off strobes and avoid jake brakes while on the Kyle Drive. There are seven large trucks and a few smaller one-tons. He has five years left on his plowing contract with Dayton and four years on his Lyman contract. He has talked to nine landowners while trying to find commercial property to store the trucks but nothing is available in Dayton.


Remi Caron asked about Poirier’s plan for off-season: it is possible that the trucks could go to Saco, as the heavy maintenance can be done there. Once snow hits, Mr. Poirier feels it is better to be local. He has already given a price to the town for the next five years which does not include driving to Saco. He estimates that he pays $12,000-$15,000 to the town in excise tax, which he would rather not pay to Saco.


Michelle Thomas’s letter cited unregistered vehicles as well as noise. There would be no unregistered vehicles left on site, perhaps only a trailer that is registered. Maintenance would be done elsewhere unless repairs are necessary during a snow storm.


Remi Caron explained that the matter of subdivision covenants is outside the town’s jurisdiction.

Gloria Wright of Brookside Drive presented photos taken from her property and noted that Poirier has placed equipment close to her back property line. She has seen a fire truck, tires, and a buried semi trailer, and does not believe that she should have to look at it. There is no buffer zone between the two properties.


Other people said that they can see the trucks. Paul Poirier has been at the same location for eight years and he noted that his equipment was there before some people moved in. He said vehicles will be moved, and explained that some of the vehicles are for parts. They are unregistered but are not junk vehicles, as they are able to be driven.


John Boissoneault asked for clarification on the buried semi. Paul Poirier explained that it is a tractor trailer box with eight wheels that is set down in the ground so the box floor is at ground level. He noted that the DEP representative approved, as things are inside and under cover. The trailer is not backfilled; it is just deep enough to get the tires below ground level. The trailer stores pumps, spare parts, and new pails of hydraulic fluid, which DEP thought was a good idea.


A resident expressed concern that a bucket could spill, perhaps if an employee tripped, and worried about contamination of the watershed. Paul Poirier said that any spill is hazardous, but this isn't likely to happen as the buckets are new and sealed.  The resident asked about leaks from other vehicles, noting that on a concrete floor like a garage, the spill is relatively contained. Poirier said he watches for spills and has an emergency spill kit in the shop. The resident expressed concerned about his well: it is 800 feet from Poiriers’ property. Jim Roberts noted that DEP says spills are usually first seen in open water and are fairly easy to clean up at that point. Paul Poirier said that there is a pond nearby and it is healthy in terms of environment.  Nothing has turned up in his well from drips on his property.


Remi Caron asked Paul Poirier to look at the photos.


Sharon Martel asked which zone this is (Rural Farm/Forest). She lives on Brookside Drive and feels the property is an eyesore and maybe this isn't the place for the business.


Remi Caron clarified that Paul Poirier is agreeing to move out all equipment except for the plow trucks, which is what the Conditional Use Permit application is requesting.


Paul Poirier noted that most equipment in the photos has already left. (The photos are two weeks old.) He thought the spare plows were not bothering anyone: Mrs. Wright felt they were very close to her line. Remi Caron noted that setbacks speak to physical structures. Paul Poirier asked about the letter that went around the neighborhood concerning setbacks, he wonders what building was implicated. Michelle Thomas said it was the two story garage and said she did not send that letter. At the time the building was built, the setback was 15 feet; now it has increased. Gloria Wright asked if unregistered vehicles would be moved. Paul Poirier said most would; only an old Oshkosh would be left.


Another resident felt that buffers should be provided, but his property should not be the buffer. Paul Poirier is willing to put up a fence or plant trees. John Butt wondered if the trucks could be stored on town property. Jim Roberts explained that Paul Poirier is a private contractor and not a town employee, nor does he own property at Town Hall. He felt it was unfair to put the town residents in the position of potential liability if someone falls or gets hurt around the trucks. Currently the liability is carried by Poirier.


Another resident asked how much the road can handle, given the frequent travel. Would Mr. Poirier be responsible for repairs and wear and tear? Paul Poirier explained that a third of the fleet stays at drivers’ houses. The road is frozen in winter so it is stable, and he feels the road does not show any wear. Another resident noted there is another place in town where the road is a mess because of a business, but Paul Poirier does a nice job taking care of the road.

Another resident pointed out that the same number of trucks go through Saco and there is more wear and tear there, and if there was a problem he would approach Paul personally. He isn't overly bothered by the trucks leaving in the morning.


Another noted that we don't want this town to look like Lake Arrowhead, with many rules and regulations.


Ms. Thomas asked about the oil strip on the road during the past year. Paul Poirier thinks it wasn't his truck as none of the vehicles were having problems that would indicate a large oil leak. He wonders if it was another vehicle making deliveries. The oil strip did not go into his driveway.


Mr. Wright noted that Brookside Drive is posted, and wondered if Kyle Drive is also. Mr. Poirier explained that plow trucks are exempt. During snow removal they are exempt from DOT as well, even though they are very heavy.


Mr. Butt stated he had no concerns about the weight, as he has not noted any damage. His concern is the number of vehicles and the noise during the day, as he works third shift. Paul Poirier indicated that he would have been willing to accommodate if he had known. Mr. Butt felt that it would be an unreasonable expectation on his part, and being a realist, he understands the nature of the business. What matters to him is that this is a residential cul-de-sac and the business has expanded over the past five years. Paul Poirier agrees that he has outgrown the property, and he is looking for another location. Eight years ago he had plow trucks and one dump truck. He approached all the residents and talked with them about his business before he bought the property. He is asking tonight just to house the plow trucks, which is what he had originally discussed with the neighbors before buying the property. He tries not to make any noise after 5PM although it can happen, as sometimes plow trucks need to be worked on during storms. For the other vehicles, the maintenance will be done in Saco.


A resident asked who would enforce the permit if it is granted. Remi Caron explained that it is the job of the CEO. He explained that the Conditional Use Permit can have conditions, such as number of vehicles, time of year that storage is allowed, etc.


Remi Caron asked the residents what would make them happy. Mrs. Wright wants to keep property values from deteriorating: she feels she can’t ask the price she would like to get if she were to sell. Remi Caron explained that the board can’t guarantee values and noted that a buffer would help alleviate that.


Another resident asked about unregistered vehicles and Remi Caron suggested checking the subdivision covenant. There are limits per state statute that is based on the value of the vehicle rather than condition.


Another resident asked about the trailer box. Paul Poirier said if it is a concern he could remove it, although it would take time. He would have to find a place to store the items in the box, such as in the shop.


Mr. Butt asked if there is way to store the trucks on town property without increasing the bid. Jim Roberts said that would be something that would have to be taken to the Selectmen, noting that it is unlikely given the time and expense that has been put into the ball fields. Paul Poirier felt the trucks would be at risk of vandalism and if it was too cold he might not be able to start up the trucks, without access to heaters that he has at his shop. It would not be feasible for him. He said that he has spent $3000 on trees to help buffer his property and asked if they have helped. Ms. Thomas and Mr. Butt feel that they have not helped and they worry about the potential decrease in property value. Mr. Butt noted that another neighbor drives a big truck and leaves it in the subdivision when he isn't driving. He isn't against the trucks, but he is against the fact that this seems to be allowed in a residential area for the town’s convenience.



Remi Caron asked what he would like to see in terms of property conditions. Mr. Butt explained that they moved to Kyle Drive because they wanted to be in a residential zone with low traffic and safe roads. Ms. Thomas said she was concerned about the lights, and said she selected this area because of the cul-de-sac and apparent safety. Another resident noted that with the opening of Poland Springs, there are many more trucks in the area. Mr. Butt said they can hear the trucks on Route 35 but they are not domiciled next to him.


Another resident asked if the trucks could be moved closer together during the winter so they are further away from the other properties. Paul Poirier said things could be more condensed but noted this may not help Ms. Thomas though, given her location.


Remi Caron asked for other comments or suggestions for conditions. John Gay asked if any of the equipment could be stored in Lyman; Poirier replied that some are there already and have been for the winter. He repeated that he could move the trucks to Saco for the winter. He would like to have them on Kyle Drive at least from November through the end of March.


Rand Clark asked what trees were planted. Mr. Poirier replied that they are evergreens; there are six along the driveway and a dozen near the pond. The intent was to plant something fast growing that would screen the property.


Remi Caron announced that the Planning Board will take the feedback into consideration and have more discussion at the next meeting. The Planning Board will plan a site walk at Poirier’s residence on Kyle Drive on Tuesday, April 23rd. The site walk will begin at 6:30 PM and the meeting will be held after at Town Hall.


The public hearing adjourned at 7:55 PM


After the public left, Remi Caron noted that the only uses not permitted in that zoning district are boat and RV sales and service, bulk fuel, motor vehicle sales, and uses similar to prohibited uses. Junk yards and industrial uses are permitted with Planning Board approval in the Rural Farm/Forest district. The issue of a buffer needs to addressed, as well as parking for the plow trucks as they would be expected to be parked in the winter. Ideas for conditional uses at this time include a reasonable timeline with the understanding that if necessary due to weather, the trucks could be brought back to Kyle Drive earlier or could stay later.


The meeting adjourned at 8:20 PM.




Valerie J. Cole, Secretary



Remi Caron, Chair

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