MINUTES OF THE FRANKLIN PLANNING COMMMISION
Tuesday, January 16, 2018
HOMESTEAD DINING ROOM
Members Present: Clark Hubbard, David Bennion, Cyrus
Grennon, Rolland Rainville, Yvon Dandurand (Selectboard)
Members Absent: Peter Kittell, Dan Larivee
Guests: Jordy Fraties, Jess Alexant (Water
Meeting called to order at: 7:37 pm
Approval of Minutes: Dave made a motion to approve
December 2017 minutes, seconded by Cyrus.
Old Business: Clark
sent a letter to John Ho and sent to NWPC and Energy Commission, stating that
the PC approved his request for a solar array on his property as John meets all
the guidelines regarding setbacks, etc.
New Business: Judith McLaughlin resigned from the
PC. The PC is now looking for another
member. Jordy Fraties asked Clark what is involved in being a member of the Planning
explained the various projects the PC has been involved in as well as public
meeting rules, and quorum rules and regulations regarding discussion of PC
business outside of the meeting. Clark stated
that it is a volunteer position with no financial compensation. Clark also
talked about the PC responsibilities regarding subdivisions, town regulations,
state regulations, and the Franklin Town Plan.
Dave added that we also have the assistance of the Regional Planning
Commission when it is time to review and renew the Franklin Town Plan. Clark
stressed the importance of having younger members on the commission. Clark told
Jordy to send a letter if interest to Peter Magnant. Jordy told the PC that he is very interested
in joining the Planning Commission.
mentioned to the PC members that a community member approached him regarding
the height requirement for a wind tower.
He stated that he personally is not opposed to a tower over 100 feet if
the tower is in the correct location, and does not have any negative impacts on
land, neighbors or community. The PC
agreed with Clark.
Dandurand joined the meeting at 8:00 pm.
presented the PC with a handout with information for protecting the Town of Franklin water source. Jess
said that currently the Water Commission is working on adjusting the PH of the
water as well as monitoring its flow.
Jess explained that he is present tonight to discuss the source protection
plan and policy with regard to the Town Plan.
Jess is not recommending any changes to the water source portion of the
current Town Plan. Jess showed a map he downloaded from a State of Vermont website that shows our water source which is the Webster Spring.
He also said that most private and public wells in the Town of Franklin are shown on the
receives this information through a well completion report that well drillers
are required to provide. This
information is not available in the town records. At Yvon’s request, Jess will provide the
information to the Town Clerk office on the State of Vermont website.
brief discussion about junkyards and enforcement.
over the state regulations that must be followed regarding groundwater
protection, groundwater withdrawal and permitting, hazardous waste, and
municipal solid waste. Rolland added information regarding regulations for farmers.
that in the near future the Water Commission will be submitting to the State of
updated water source protection document.
Clark to Jess that he thought the PC
was going to receive that information at this meeting. Jess’s document does not have that exact
for new water systems do not apply to older water systems such as the system in
Franklin. Jess said that it is extremely expensive and
time consuming for municipalities to create a new water system. Clark is
concerned about the mention of the Hubbard Spring, which has not been used for
many years and there are no pipes accessing it.
It would be extremely expensive to bring that spring up to usable
standards in the event of an emergency. Jess
stated that according to the State of Vermont
and Federal regulations it would take 3 years to be completed. Jess stated that in his document the Town of Franklin needs to resolve
administrative issues such as ownership, quality, and accessibility before the
Hubbard Spring can be considered a secondary source. Jess does not feel the
Hubbard Spring would be needed, but mentioned chlorinating and filtering should
it be needed. Jess also stated that he
believes the Webster Spring will provide all the water that is needed in Franklin. Clark
mentioned to Jess that the document mentions the need for a secondary water
source. He asked that since the Hubbard
Spring would not make an appropriate source, does one need to be found. Jess
responded that such an issue is mentioned in his document.
Jess would also like to recommend the Town
discuss purchasing land around the Hubbard to protect it for possible (emergency)
use, as well as purchasing land around the Webster Spring.
stated that the purchase of 15 acres around both the Hubbard and Webster
springs would be sufficient to protect them from hazardous materials.
Clark would like Jess put wording into his
document regarding purchasing land to protect the water sources. He stated that there will not be true water protection
unless land is purchased to protect the water sources. Jess will put wording in his document
stressing the importance of purchasing land to create a protective buffer.
Rolland stated that there are ownership
questions regarding the Hubbard Spring.
Jess has mentioned in his document that that is one of the
administrative problems that needs to be resolved. Roland and Yvon briefly discussed ownership
history to the Hubbard Spring.
discussed whether houses can be built on source protection land. Jess said that according to State
regulations, houses cannot be built. He
said land can be farmed, but nothing can be added to the land.
Clark said that that three homes have been
built on the source area where old pipes have been laid. Jess said that that was before the source
area had been designated.
asked if homeowners could drill their own wells. Clark said
that in town most homes are quarter acre lots with septic systems, therefore
wells cannot be drilled on most town properties.
Jess brought up are the “fissures” in the bedrock in Franklin, and the proximity of the Webster
Spring to one of the fissures. He hypothesizes
that possibly the water is entering the Webster Spring
from one of those fissures. However, no
geological studies have been done to show where the water is entering.
Jess would like the town place three
monitoring wells around the Webster
Spring to obtain more information
about the water and the well- particularly where the water is entering. Yvon said the monitoring wells will not tell
us how to protect the well, and Clark
responded by stating that once the location of entering water is known, you
would know how to protect it. Water
levels during high use and drought was also discussed. Cyrus feels that
monitoring of water flow use is first priority.
Jess responded that engineers will have monitoring flow design ready
September or October 2019.
The PC and
Selectboard needs to know from Jess exactly what the Town of Franklin needs to do for wellhead protection. They are looking for factual information on
what the PC and Selectboard need to be put into regulations. Clark would
like to incorporate the document Jess wrote in the Town Plan, but would also
like an informational pamphlet for water protection. At this time, there is not enough information
for the PC to designate exactly how to protect the water source. He suggested that after a water study, more information
will be available regarding the source of the water. At that time the Town
could then consider the purchase of land.
Clark asked the PC if all approve keeping
the document with the discussed additions and changes. All members agreed. When the document is completed, it will be
put through to the Selectboard.
Motion to Adjourn: Rolland made a motion to adjourn the meeting
at 9:30 seconded by Cyrus. All approved. The meeting adjourned at 9:30
pm. The next regular meeting of the Franklin Planning Commission will be
February 20, 2018 at the Homestead Dining Room.
These minutes are not final until
approved by the Planning Commission at the next regular meeting.