Planning Board Minutes - 6-14-12 Print E-mail


195 Changebridge Road, Montville Municipal Building


Chairman Lipari convened the meeting at 7:32pm and welcomed everyone to the Montville Township Planning Board hearing and asked everyone to turn off their cell phones.

Ms. Kehoe took the roll call.


Mr. Tim Braden, Mayor - present

Mr. Gary Lewis, Vice Chairman - present

Mr. Art Maggio – absent

Mr. John Visco - absent

Mr. Larry Hines – present

Mr. Ladis Karkowsky - present

Mr. Don Kostka, Committeeman - present

Mr. Larry Kornreich - present

Mr. Russ Lipari, Chairman – present

Mr. Tony Speciale (alt#1) - present

Mr. Larry Tobias (alt#2) – absent

Also present:

Board Attorney:                        Michael Carroll, Esq. - present

Board Engineer:            Stan Omland, PE, Omland Engineering - present

Board Planner:              Joseph Burgis, PP, AICP, Burgis Associates - present

Principal Planner / Secretary:     Meghan Hunscher, PP AICP - present

Recording Secretary:                 Kelley Kehoe - present




Board Attorney Mr. Carroll swore in professionals: Mr. Omland, Mr. Burgis and Ms. Hunscher.


Chairman Lipari asked the Committee members if they have any reports:

Board of Adjustment – Vice Chairman Lewis reported that they met last week and bulk variances for a single family residence were approved.

Board of Health – Mr. Tobias was absent.

Environmental Commission – Mr. Kornreich had no report. They are meeting next week.

Water & Sewer – Mr. Maggio was absent.

Historic Preservation Commission – Mr. Visco was absent.

Design Review Committee – Mr. Kostka had no report.

Site Plan/Subdivision Committee – Chairman Lipari reported that waivers for new tenants a 2 Changebridge Road were approved.

Economic Development Committee – Mr. Speciale had no report. They are meeting next Wednesday.

Open Space Committee – Mr. Karkowsky had no report.

Master Plan – Vice Chairman Lewis said that the Master Plan subcommittee met with Mr. Kevin Boswell, representative of the GI Auto site, in regards to zoning on the parcel. There will be a discussion by the full Board by the end of June.

Cross Acceptance Committee – No report.

Highlands Legislation Review Committee – Vice Chairman Lewis had no report

Fire Districts – Chairman Lipari for Towaco had no report, Tony Speciale for Pine Brook had no report, and Art Maggio for Montville was absent.

SECRETARY’S REPORT - Ms. Hunscher had no report.


Chairman Lipari opened up meeting to board discussion. There was no Board discussion.

PUBLIC DISCUSSION.  Chairman Lipari opened the meeting to public comment.  Seeing no one, he closed the meeting to the public.


There was no planning business to come before the board.


There were no waivers to come before the board.


Burgis Associates Trust for: $270, $303.75, $135, $1,113.75, $202.50, $202.50, $33.75.

On a motion made by Mr. Hines and seconded by Mr. Karkowsky the invoices were approved. Roll Call - Unanimous.


PSOIL 12-09 Boeckel, John - 20 Gunther’s View – B: 109, L: 30.11 – Soil Movement Application – Approval (May 10, 2012) Eligible: R. Lipari, L. Karkowsky, T. Braden, D. Kostka, J. Visco, L. Kornreich, A. Speciale, L. Tobias

On a motion made by Mayor Braden and seconded by Mr. Kornreich, the resolution was approved. Roll Call of Eligibles - Unanimous.

PSOIL 12-10 Nagel, Peter - 4 Gunther’s View – B: 109, L: 30.03 – Soil MovemenApplication – Approval (May 10, 2012) Eligible: R. Lipari, L. Karkowsky, T. Braden, D. Kostka, J. Visco, L. Kornreich, A. Speciale, L. Tobias

On a motion made by Mr. Karkowsky and seconded by Mr. Speciale, the resolution was approved. Roll Call of Eligibles - Unanimous.

PSOIL 12-12 Polise, Vincenzo – 75 Stoneybrook Road – B: 21, L: 4 – Soil Movemen Application – Approval (May 10, 2012) Eligible: R. Lipari, L. Karkowsky, T. Braden, D. Kostka, J. Visco, L. Kornreich, A. Speciale, L. Tobias

On a motion made by Mr. Kornreich and seconded by Mayor Braden, the resolution was approved. Roll Call of Eligibles - Unanimous.


There were no correspondence/extensions/dismissals to come before the board.


Planning Board Minutes – May 24, 2012 - Eligible: R. Lipari, L. Hines, G. Lewis, T. Braden, A. Maggio, L. Kornreich, J. Visco, A. Speciale

On a motion made by Mr. Hines and seconded by Mr. Kornreich, the minutes were approved. Roll Call of Eligibles - Unanimous.

Planning Board Sub Committee Minutes – May 24, 2012 - Eligible: R. Lipari, T. Braden, J. Visco

On a motion made by Chairman Lipari and seconded by Mayor Braden, the minutes were approved. Roll Call of Eligibles - Unanimous.


There were no LOI/DEP notifications to come before the board for discussion.


Mr. Carroll reported that the Supreme Court issued an opinion in regards to allowing individual condo/townhouse owners to put up political signs. They will be doing the budget in the next couple of weeks. They also passed a bill today to extend the statute of limitations of sexual assault cases.


PMS/C12-11 – Potomac Homes (Memory Care) – 55 River Road – B: 52; L: 64 – R-20A – Minor Site Plan with Sign Variance – Notice Acceptable                                                   ACT BY: 8/31/12

Chairman Lipari asked the applicant to appear.

Mr. Schepis gave his overview of the minor site plan approval for the signage they are seeking. Mr. Burgis stated the regulations. Mr. Schepis submitted Exhibits 1 & 2. Exhibit 1 was dated 6-14-12 and was a copy of a state statute effective April 2, 2022 referencing 40:55D-66.1 with Senate Community Affairs Committee Comment Statement.  Exhibit 2 dated 6-14-12 was an excerpt from Township Ordinances specifically section 230-214 which allows signs to be permitted in “R Zone districts.” Mr. Carroll swore in the expert Erik Hammerquist, Director of Operations of Memory Care. Mr. Hammerquist described what service his company provides and the facility on River Road. The Montville house is one of twelve properties they own. They have done a recent renovation and currently have a total of three residents. He submitted Exhibits 3 & 4. Exhibit 3 was a picture of the sign outside their Greenbrook, NJ home and Exhibit 4 was a picture of the sign outside their home in Ramsey, NJ. Mr. Hammerquist testified the need for a sign outside their Montville home, which was to help families and doctors, etc to find their location. Chairman Lipari asked for Planning Board member comments. Mr. Hines inquired about the maximum number of residents allowed there.  Mr. Hammerquist responded that the facility could accommodate sixteen residents, but fifteen most recently lived there.

Chairman Lipari opened the meeting to public comments.

The first resident to appear was Sharon Simino of 4 Fowler Place. She stated that they were originally told it would be kept residential in character fourteen years ago. They would not like the sign to be erected. They are concerned that the values of their homes have already decreased due to the economy. She inquired about the size of the sign. Mr. Schepis stated that the sign area would only be 12 square feet. The second resident to appear was Erik Bruchhauser of 57 River Road. He questioned why after fourteen years, that a sign is now required for them to find this house. Mr. Hammerquist could not explain why the need for it was now, but that they would like it to be easily identified for loved ones, doctors, etc. The third resident to appear was Bettina Zimny of 56 River Road. She stated she was happy with the residential feel of the house. She does not want it to go more commercial. Mr. Hammerquist again identified the need. He said residents are unable to leave the home and the need to have all services brought in-house. The fourth resident to appear was Adel Schaffer of 51 River Road. She inquired if it was the same group of doctors that have been coming? Yes, he said they are the internists, landscapers, beauticians, but not the specialists. There being no further comment from the public, Chairman Lipari closed the meeting to the public. 

Vice Chairman Lewis asked if a smaller one foot sign would not provide the same purpose for identification of the property. Mr. Hammerquist said it was a more uniform business sign for advertising purposes. He stated that any advertising is better than none. Mr. Burgis stated that a one foot sign is permitted. Mr. Schepis thought it had to be attached to the building. Mr. Omland discussed the waivers, which were reviewed and deemed complete. The application was accepted by Vice Chairman Lewis, seconded by Mr. Hines - All in Favor.

The next witness, James P. Cutillo of James P. Cutillo and Associates, Architects & Planners, was sworn in by Mr. Carroll. Exhibit 5 was submitted. It was a group pf pictures of other business signs in residential areas dated 6-14-12. Mr. Cutillo described the signs. Chairman Lipari stated that six of the signs submitted were township properties. He said he just took pictures of the signs in residential areas. He went through the site plan. There were no changes besides adding the sign. They were not asking for any use variance changes. They would be adding some landscaping and stoneage. They would not be changing the use of the building. Chairman Lipari asked for Planning Board member comments. Deputy Mayor Kostka asked Mr. Carroll about Exhibit 5. He wanted to know if he voted no, would he be arbitrary. Mr. Carroll discussed the legalities. He said that each property stands on its own merit. He discussed the positive and negative criteria. They must establish a need for it.

Vice Chairman Lewis asked Mr. Cutillo if it was his opinion that a smaller sign would work. He said a sign with a logo and number tells the whole story, where as the number alone doesn’t tell everything. Mr. Burgis discussed the positive criteria and the negative criteria.  He said the local ordinance limits it to only a one foot sign and that the state statute requires that the requirements of a single family residential zone apply to these types of uses.  Mr. Schepis said that the facility feels that need for a sign and they have a legitimate reason to have a sign since they are an institution. Mr. Hammerquist asked if the sign is reduced in size and made to look more like the Wags and Whiskers sign with no phone number and free standing would that work? Mr. Burgis stated that ordinance does not permit signs for home occupations.

Chairman Lipari opened the meeting for public discussion. Adel Schaffer returned with to point out there was and existing mailbox with the “Potomac” name already on it. Bettina Zimny of 56 River Road wanted to add that there was an historic home in vicinity of the property. The meeting was closed to public discussion by Vice Chairman Lewis, seconded by Mr. Hines – All in Favor.

There was no further discussion. Chairman Lipari said that when the facility was established fourteen years ago, signage was not allowed based on the ordinance at that time.  The Board members generally felt that the applicant had not satisfied the statutory criteria to justify granting the variance.

A motion to deny this application was made by Mr. Karkowsky, seconded by Vice Chairman Lewis. Roll Call – Unanimous.

HRC Application No. 01-12 – Croatian Cultural Center – 164 Boonton Ave – B: 1; L: 6 – Replacement of Roof Shingles

Ms. Hunscher gave an overview and presented a historic photographic of the site from the New Jersey Historic Sites Inventory that was included in the HPRC packet of information. She indicated that the existing roof had been leaking and the applicant requested that the roof shingles be replaced with simulated “wood shake” roofing since it was cost prohibitive to replace the roof with an exact replica. The HPRC felt this was an acceptable form of roofing material and had issued a resolution, which was previously submitted to the Planning Board. 

A motion to approve the application and issue a zoning permit was made by Mr. Karkowsky, seconded by Mayor Braden. Roll Call – Unanimous.

Break from 8:50pm to 9:00pm.


PSPP/F12-06 – Lake Valhalla Club – 11 Vista Road. – B: 11, 20, 20.01; L: 29, 1, 1 – LVC (LR Zone) – preliminary/final site plan                                                                                    ACT BY: 8/5/12

Deputy Mayor Kostka and Mr. Karkowsky stated for the record that they had listened to the meeting recording and are able to vote on decisions.

All witnesses remained sworn. Chairman Lipari asked Mr. Burgis to bring the Board members up to date on the issues of the need for additional parking in the Lake Recreation Zone. Mr. Schepis continued his testimony with Mr. Garrett. Mr. Garrett picked up with the improvements to the cottage referring back to Exhibit A-5 (A-100 of the site plan) dated 11-17-10. First he discussed the proposed changes to the cottage. They are looking to create bathrooms including men’s and ladies’ rooms, locker storage, a yacht club area with an addition including two outdoor showers with a roof for a safer and more appropriate location. He referred to Exhibit A-2 (sheet 2 of the overall site plan) dated 1-26-12, which was prepared by David Egarian PE. He discussed the volleyball court area including where it was located and the proposed netting referring back to Exhibit A-1 (page 4 of the original package). They are also looking to supplement some of the existing evergreens. He explained the gravel road, which goes along the property to the yacht club area including the parking area for access for the kayaks, sailboats, etc. The club had added some parking bumpers. Chairman Lipari asked if was used only for only loading and unloading. He said members usually leave their cars there when boating. Those parking spots were included in the overall parking numbers. He said that just east of the gravel road (northeast corner of the property) there was a heavy slope area. They are asking for relief to leave the existing planting buffers. Chairman Lipari asked for the Professionals’ comments. Mr. Burgis said that the existing structures do not need a variance, but that the proposed fencing does. Chairman Lipari asked for Planning Board member comments. Mr. Kornreich inquired if the cottage is tied into the existing sewer system – Yes. There were no other board comments. It was determined that the pictures accurately depict the existing gravel road and parking bumpers.

Chairman Lipari opened the meeting to the public for questions on the most recent testimony given.

Evelyn Hoops of 14 Diann Drive inquired about the parking in the grove. Mr. Garrett said it was proposed for overflow parking and employees. She asked about the stream. She was concerned about the quality of the stream.  She was also concerned with the runoff. Mr. Garrett said the bridge was proposed as a pedestrian bridge and the only vehicle that would be used would be the gator. There would be no cars on the bridge. She stated that the gate was open in the grove area. She inquired about the cottage bathroom usage and who would be using it. She was concerned about the safety of children crossing the street. Mr. Garrett stated that there was a proposed crosswalk. She asked about the outdoor shower. She felt the showers were more convenient where they are currently located. She inquired about the bails of hay by the volleyball courts, which keep the sand from going onto Vista Road. Mr. Garrett explained that they looked into getting either a high grass barrier to act as a wind barrier, and they also discussed buying a cover for the courts for over the winter months.

Mr. Bauman of 10 Lake Shore Drive asked about the parking in the grove. He had discovered since the last meeting the new ordinance requirements of parking allowance and was concerned that the expansion of the beach necessitated an increase in parking requirement. He also stated that the beach had been expanded by 40%. Mr. Garrett stated that the beach has never been expanded. Chairman Lipari asked Mr. Bauman for proof of the beach expansion. Mr. Bauman asked about the patio expansion. Chairman Lipari explained that it was in the testimony from the last meeting, and that LVC is willing to get the necessary inspections. Mr. Garrett said that it was preexisting and yes it was expanded. He said the new ordinance changed the parking counts. Mr. Bauman addressed the cottage and his concerns with the children crossing the street. The meeting was closed for public discussion on a motion made by Mr. Hines, seconded by Vice Chairman Lewis - All in Favor.

Mr. Schepis asked Mr. Garrett to discuss the proposed project south of Vista Road by the ball field. He said the ordinance allows them three times per year to use the ball field as an overflow parking area. He referred back to Exhibit A-1. They are looking to relocate the gate off the paper road to their property. Vice Chairman Lewis asked if they were using the paper road for parking - No. He asked them to use their authority to not have members park on the paper street. They were in agreement. Mr. Garrett said that there was a small retaining wall, which was built last year on the south side of the ball field with minor grading. There were no further Planning Board member questions. Mr. Burgis asked about access way to the driveway on the opposite side of the paper street and buffer plantings. Yes, they were willing to comply. Mr. Omland asked for more plantings on the corner. If there were a fence he was satisfied. Mayor Braden said that the money should be put into buffering other areas of LVC instead of a ball field which is used three times a year for overflow parking. Chairman Lipari asked about investigating was to shield the headlights shining into the neighbors homes.

The meeting was open for public discussion.

Melonie Unice of 1 Hathaway and 36 Valhalla Road stated the she would appreciate more buffering. She suggested changing the entry gate for parking to Vista Road.

Cornelia DiNuzio of 6 Hathaway Lane discussed the fence along the tennis courts. The current screening does not help. She suggested a tall/dense hedge, not evergreens. She asked that the club not put back up the green screening since it kills the plants. Chairman Lipari said that it would need to be worked out with the club. Mr. Bauman of the 10 Lake Shore Drive submitted pictures of empty parking lots, while cars were parked on the street. He had safety concerns. Mr. Carroll suggested he submit his pictures to the Planning Board with a clear explanation of what he is presenting to the Board in advance of the next hearing. Vice Chairman Lewis asked Mr. Burgis if he had an opinion in regards to the shower. He asked if the Planning Board has jurisdiction - Yes.

The application has been carried with notice preserved to the next meeting date of June 28, 2012.


There were no concepts to come before the board.


There being no further business to discuss Chairman Lipari asked for a motion to adjourn. On a motion made by Mr. Karkowsky and seconded by Deputy Mayor Kostka, the meeting adjourned at 10:18pm. Roll Call - Unanimous.

Respectfully submitted, 

Kelley Kehoe, Recording Secretary


Meghan Hunscher, Sec.

Certified true copy of minutes adopted at Planning Board meeting of June 28, 2012.


Last Updated ( Monday, 16 July 2012 )
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