TOWN OF EMERALD ISLE
REGULAR MEETING OF PLANNING BOARD MINUTES
MONDAY, JUNE 19, 2000
The meeting was called to order at 7:00 P.M. by Vice-Chairman, Cary Harrison. Chairman Brownlow had to attend to family business.
Members in attendance: Cary Harrison, Ceil Saunders, George McLaughlin, Frank Vance and Phil Almeida. David Schock was unable to attend. Also attending: Town Manager, Pete Allen; Building Inspector, Jim Taylor; and, Secretary, Carol Angus.
The minutes of the Regular Meeting of May 15, 2000 were approved with a number of typo-graphical errors corrected. Motion to approve the minutes with those change made by Ceil Saunders, second by Frank Vance with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.
Report from Town Manager – Mr. Allen gave the members a brief summary of the decisions and considerations of the June 13, 2000 Town Board meeting.
Report from Building Inspector – Mr. James Taylor, Inspections Director, gave the members a brief summary of the permits and projects under construction at this time. The total evaluation for the month of May was $1,279,050 including six single family dwelling permits.
There were several issues discussed regarding projects throughout town, one being the Kwik/Mart/Citgo station working on Sundays, which is not permitted. The foreman had been informed previously of this violation and Mr. McLaughlin advised they had been working again the previous Sunday. Mr. Taylor said he would see that the foreman was notified again.
- Willis Fish Market – Commercial Review Mr. Ken Burnett, Burnette Architecture & Planning at 7803 Emerald Drive at the southeast corner of Emerald Drive and Loblolly Street.
Mr. Harrison advised that there is a second plan submitted for the elevation views of the building. The owners were considering the original plan, as well as the one before the board tonight.
Ms. Saunders asked Mr. Burnette if the fish market portion of the building will be closer to the residences or to Emerald Drive. Mr. Burnette said it will be closer to the highway, the tenant will be closer to the residences.
Mr. Harrison asked if the new plan would still be a metal roof; Mr. Burnette said it would be metal with lap siding walls.
Mr. Harrison asked if each of the two businesses were permitted 32 square feet for their signs. Mr. Taylor replied that was correct, and an 80 square foot freestanding sign is also permitted, at a height of 16 feet.
Ms. Angus wanted to advise that the owners had mentioned to her that they would like to have a red metal roof. That has been the color scheme they have used and would like to continue with it. She wanted there to be no misunderstanding about the color.
Mr. Harrison wanted to see the height of the freestanding sign noted on the map with the type of lighting, if any. A colored elevation plan would be necessary so that the board could see the proposed color scheme for the building. Furthermore, the stormwater plan has not been finished. Mr. John McLean is working on it and it should be submitted within a few days. Mr. David Criser has been contracted about the approach that is being taken, so he is aware of it coming. The vegetative screen has not been noted next to the residential area. Mr. Burnette said he understood that it could be a wooden screen or vegetated and the Willis’ want to go with a wood screen.
Ms. Saunders asked if the owners were not also going to have a well installed. Mr. Burnett said that is correct. It remains to be seen whether the Health Department will approve a well.
Mr. Burnett said the project will probably use Carteret-Craven EMC lighting program which works with each project individually. They generally do not have to use shielding, but they will if needed. The roadway should be no problem at all, but will work with shielding for the surrounding residences. Probably a sodium type (yellow/orange) light at each end of the property. There would not be any glare on the residences, probably 250 watts.
Ms. Saunders said this project bothers her being in a residential area. Her concern is the smell no matter what the owners may do to prevent it. It’s trash, fish heads, shells, any of it will smell. In her opinion it is in a bad location.
Mr. Harrison replied there are two things to consider. One, the Board decided that fish markets be permitted in a B2 zone, with a Public Hearing that was advertised. So the neighbors did have a way to find out about the use. Two, there is a clause in the ordinance to protect the neighbors that says noxious odors are a nuisance and must be corrected.
Mr. Vance said he would like to see the landscaping plan. Mr. Burnette said it is "in the works" and will be available.
Mr. Harrison said he has a problem with sending this on to the Town Board with the number of items that are still outstanding (sign dimensions; lighting color, shielding, type and candlepower; architectural review with exterior colors, stormwater plan, and landscaping). He asked Ms. Angus for some guidance in how to handle this project. Ms. Angus agreed that it is more than simply waiting for approval of the stormwater plan and that it should be held until it is complete.
Mr. Burnette asked if that meant it would return to the Planning Board in July, which is correct and proceed to the Town Board for their August meeting..
Mr. Vance asked if there was an estimated time to have the building started. Mr. Willis said he would like to open in the Spring of next year. With a three month project construction period this 30 wait would not present any problems.
Mr. Allen brought up about using Mr. David Criser from his Wilmington office for the approval of the stormwater plan. He would like to address this to the Town Board to see if we might be able to have other engineers, who would be given a copy of the town’s stormwater plan, review and approve the plans. Mr. Criser did the plan about 12 years ago and he has continued to do this review; however, he has become so busy with his own business and is so far away for our local projects. There is nothing in the plan that says he has to be the engineer to review the plans.
Ms. Angus advised that she had contacted several engineers in this area and their costs per hour are comparable to Mr. Criser.
Motion was made by George McLaughlin, second by Frank Vance to hold this project, for the items mentioned, until the July 17, 2000 regular meeting. Motion was unanimously approved.
- Citgo/Kwik-Mart – Wooten Oil Co. Revision of Stormwater Retention Basin.
Mr. Harrison said in a brief summary that what he had discussed with the developers was that instead of the sloped sides that was projected in the parking lot; it was proposed to move it back to add four additional parking spaces. It will be a bulkeaded side approximately 4’ tall, fenced and vegetated. There is a copy of the proposed change with Ms. Angus. The new proposal does not diminish the effectiveness of the previous plan; actually, it increased the capacity somewhat. The board looked over the plan with Mr. Taylor, who had a letter from Carteret County Health Department that they did not have a problem with the change. Also, Mr. Brownlow had looked at the plan and signed off and dated it.
Mr. Almeida and Mr. McLaughlin had a concern with some of the driveway slope. Mr. Taylor said he would go out the next morning to be sure that the slope was according to the previous plan to have the runoff go to this area. Mr. Vance said he knew this had been discussed during the review process, so the developers were aware of runoff.
Mr. Harrison asked if he was correct that this item is a "Point of Information" and it is not necessary to forward it to the town board. Ms. Angus said that was correct, that if someone saw a change from what had been presented that it had been approved.
- Discussion and possible recommendation of Sec. 6-54 to amend ordinance to impose double fees/penalties for commencing work without permits.
The purpose of this being before the board was also for their information of final draft. Mr. Allen said this had been discussed at the previous Town Board meeting and supported it. It is a critical issue and wanted to give the constituency an opportunity make comments. It does not require a Public Hearing, but will allow comment.
Motion to recommend approval of the ordinance Sec. 6-54 was made by George McLaughlin, second by Frank Vance with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.
- Discussion and possible recommendation of amending Sect. 19 Dimensional Requirements regarding installation of swimming pools on oceanfront property.
Mr. Harrison advised this recommended change would prohibit the installation of any swimming pool within the ocean erodible setback area. There had been some discussion of prohibiting them in the Area of Environmental Concern (CAMA AEC), but the intent was not to prohibit pools entirely from oceanfront properties, only those oceanward of the ocean erodible setback area. Mr. Taylor advised that in most areas this would affect the first 60’ from the first natural stable line of vegetation, and in a small area on the west portion of the island it would be 90 feet. The Area of Environmental Concern is this area times two, plus an additional 50 feet, which would typically be 170’. This is not what was intended and he did not know how the copy had reverted to the original concept that was before the board.
Mr. Harrison agreed this is a significant difference in area, and that you should not place your pool where it would likely be lost and the town has to deal with it for cleanup.
Mr. Taylor asked that the change be made to the proposed copy to read "ocean erodible setback area" in each section.
Ms. Farmer said she did not know why it was before the Planning Board again, it was to reappear before the Town Board in July. She asked Mr. Allen for clarification.
Mr. Allen said in the recent past there have been so many amendment changes and resubmisions that we were only trying to cover all bases in having it reappear before the Planning Board. It will be put before the Town Board for their July meeting for Public Hearing. Ms. Farmer, Mayor Pro-Tem, said there has already been a public hearing held on this amendment and another public hearing is not necessary.
- Discussion of Wireless Communication Towers
Mr. Harrison advised the board that he had distributed a draft of his and his committee’s proposed ordinance. He expects to have a professional review the draft. He had received three names law firms to help with the review, one in Miami, one in Ft. Lauderdale and one in Washington, D.C. They charge $5,000 to $15,000 for this review. He was able to contact Susan Raybold, at Metrosite, which has an alliance with the League of Municipalities. She has written a book about zoning for wireless communications as well as other model ordinances. She has agreed to look at it for her comments. Mr. Harrison wants to gather as many comments as the members may have, with Ms. Raybold’s comments, then take it to the Board of Commissioners. That might happen before the August meeting, but we may have to have a 30 day extension to what has been requested for this ordinance by the Board of Commissioners. That should not be a legal issue for an extension, if you are working on an ordinance a moratorium can be extended.
Mr. Harrison said he had a number of people advise him that a public workshop is not a good idea for two reasons; 1) the general public does not have enough background to understand and logically discuss the components of the ordinance; 2) the industry pros that may want to show up and discuss it, are going to try to bend the ordinance in their favor. He asked for direction as to whether a Public Hearing would be required.
Mayor Barbara Harris said if it falls under Chapter 19, it will require a Public Hearing by ordinance. Ms. Farmer said the Public Hearing may be directed as more of a presentation in layman’s terms for the public. Advise the public whether there could be a big cell tower in the middle of Emerald Isle; that the location of Bogue Field has some bearing on placement; that the town encourages co-location as opposed to new towers; and the areas where the new towers can be placed are very limited.
Mr. Harrison agreed it should be presented to desensitize the issue.
Mayor Harris asked what the budget line is for Ms. Raybold? Mr. Harrison said she is doing this basically out of pity for a small town that does not have those resources and she will probably charge a one-time fee of $75.00. Metrosite will help with site location and if the town itself would decide to put up a tower or antennae they will help with negotiations of the contract.
Mayor Harris asked for an outline of the ordinance. She said she did not understand it and doubts the general public would understand. It is a very thorough ordinance.
Commissioner Trainham added that he liked the approach of the ordinance as it is written to make it difficult to bring a tower to Emerald Isle.
Mr. McLaughlin said that the Atlantic Ocean is a benefit, in that a tower is for 360 degrees, so almost 180 degrees is no good. Property is much more affordable on Hwy 24.
Commissioner Trainham brought up a possible ordinance to address commercial architecture. Mr. Harrison had a copy of a list of things to be considered in regard to future commercial construction. Mr. Harrison went over the items on the proposal then recommended that it proceed to the Review Committee on Wednesday, June 21, 2000 at 3:30 P.M.
Mr. Harrison said this had not appeared on the agenda because it had not yet been pre-sented to the Chairman in sufficient time to be added to the agenda. Mr. Harrison did not want to make it look as though the board had really shoved this through very quickly. Ms. Farmer advised that Mr. Brownlow had been aware of the discussion but could not attend.
Ms. Saunders said this topic had been discussed in 1998, in some respects; however, the board, at that time, was not interested in pursuing it.
Commissioner Trainham said he did not want to wait too long for this ordinance.
Mr. McLaughlin asked if other tourist towns might have something to help with this.
Mr. Allen advised that he has some information coming.
Mr. Harrison said he had not been able to have much luck in searching for this type of information.
Mayor Harris said Atlantic Beach was trying to word something to help their town through a nuisance ordinance. Mr. Allen said they had not been able to get too far.
Mr. Harrison asked if the Council members in attendance would like to see this reviewed at Review Committee on Wednesday? Commissioners Farmer and Trainham said they would.
Mr. McLaughlin made the motion to refer this item to Review Committee with second by Ceil Saunders and unanimous approval in favor of the motion.
Mr. Harrison said he wanted to address the lighting and sand fencing for sea turtles. Most people feel public awareness is all we can do for the lighting aspect. There is no way to enforce a lighting ordinance, so having rental agencies and homeowners cooperation is the way to go. As far as fencing, it is a little easier to consider and enforce.
Mr. Vance said he had made some phone calls but wasn’t able to find much.
Mr. Harrison said Ms. Boettcher had sent him a good book on lighting that he would be glad to pass on to Mr. Vance.
Mr. Vance said he felt that it is a little late for this year’s turtles. He was appointed to head the committee for these two items.
The rezoning issue that had been presented previously by Mayor Harris to have it avail-able by June 30, had to be extended due to the complexity of the issue. This topic will be addressed at Review Committee June 21, 2000 at 3:30 P.M.
Motion to adjourn made by George McLaughlin, second by Ceil Saunders, with unanimous approval in favor of the motion.