Franklin Planning Commission

September 17, 2019

Town Clerk’s Office


Members Present: Clark Hubbard, Sam Gervais, Dave Bennion, Dan Larivee,

Rolland Rainville (8:00 pm)


Guests: Lisa Hango, Charen Fegard (representatives)


Meeting called to order at: 7:34 pm


Approval of Minutes: Dave made a motion to accept the August minutes, Dan seconded the motion. all approved the minutes. 


Old Business: Old business is combined with the new business. 


New Business: Lisa Hango and Charen Fegard are visiting other town Planning Commission and Selectboard meetings to get an understanding of what is happening in the towns they represent.  The meeting began with the Pledge of Allegiance. 

 Clark read the letter that Judith McLaughlin wrote to the PC and Selectboard concerning the issues discussed at the August meeting.  See attached letter.  Clark and the PC feel that what is expressed in the letter were all discussed at the August meeting.  Clark mentioned to the Selectboard at the August meeting page11, page 77, and page 69 of the Town Development regulations. Also discussed is the fact that the town is not responsible for plowing private roads. 

            Clark reviewed the regulations regarding transitioning seasonal homes to year round homes.  Clark had said that it is up to the owner of the summer homes, (the lease owner) to hold the renter responsible for not following the lease that was granted.   The PC feels it is not up to the town to enforce leases.  Clark asked the representatives present if that is correct.  Charon and Lisa discussed the issue and said that they could ask legislation counsel regarding the responsibility of such an issue.  Charon said that the statute that is quoted in Judith’s letter does not state specifically who is responsible for managing the issue.  Charon said she assumes it might be the municipality.  The discussion went on and it was agreed that in this situation, the lease needs to be reviewed to determine whether or not they are specified as seasonal or not.  The interim ZA is currently in the process of reviewing all the leases.  Lisa Hango feels that the issue in the letter should go before a Zoning Board of Adjustment.  Dave said that the issue is a Selectboard issue and is on the agenda of the Selectboard meeting for September 18. 

            Clark made notations regarding information regarding variances for conversion from seasonal to year round from the Town Development Regulations (page 11- violations, page 77- Dwelling units Seasonal, page 69- variances.  There should be state approved potable water/sewer, 2 parking spots off street, and lease should not state seasonal.  Also, camps cannot be rebuilt next to the lake within set backs. The town does not provide services if road is a private road.) Dave will bring the information to the Selectboard meeting on September 18. 

            Lisa asked if there was a large number of year round homes on lake, and the PC said no.  Most of the year round homes on the lake are in the Blackwoods area as the land the homes are on is not leased, it is owned. 

Rolland attended the meeting at 8:00 pm

Lisa asked the PC if many camps were in violation.  Clark said there were also a few on the lake that are in violation of seasonal use, as well as a few on the Hill Road.  The ZA assistant is working on identifying the violators. 



Franklin Planning Commission

September 17, 2019

Town Clerk’s office


Dave stated that the Selectboard cannot deal with a complaint about violations, unless the complaint is in writing.  The issue being discussed was the result of a written complaint. 

The legislators agreed that the wording on the leases is important(seasonal or not) 


The PC discussed other concerns with the legislators present. 

Dan had a concern for the legislators regarding an issue that a farmer had while driving equipment down 105.  He pulled over and was berated by a driver behind.  The legislators said that if the farmer was feeling unsafe it would be an issue for the state police. 

Sam and Clark discussed the difference between a remodel of a camp and a rebuild of a camp.  Replacement and re-do of septic systems was also discussed. 

            The PC discussed the issue of 90 percent renewable energy as told by the State of Vermont with our representatives. On one hand the state is expecting the renewable energy, yet there is difficulty getting approval.   Lisa said that the regulations from the State of Vermont regarding energy issues and others issues are to insure that towns have same regulations. 


The PC expressed concerns about the school merger and the effect on the future of Franklin Central School.  Lisa said that Franklin Northeast made sure that in the contract not one school in Franklin Northeast will close.  She urged the PC to look at the contract that was developed in our merger to see if there is similar language that Franklin Northeast has.  


Clark signed a request for FY20 Municipal Resolution for Municipal Planning Grant. 


Dan made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:50 pm.  Sam seconded the motion.  All approved the motion.  The meeting was adjourned at 8:52 pm. 


The next regular meeting of the Planning Commission will be held on October 15, 2019 at the Town Clerk’s office.  



Respectfully Submitted,

Maureen Sodaro, Secretary

September 18, 2019


Minutes are not final until approved at the next regular meeting.