Planning Board Meeting Minutes 08/10/2020

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Town of Otis

Planning Board Meeting Minutes

August 10, 2020

7:00 p.m.

Online using the Zoom link provided below.


*This meeting is being conducted remotely through Zoom. You must check back within 24 hours of the start time for a link to join.

Pursuant to the Governor’s March 12, 2020 order suspending certain provisions of the Open Meeting Law, G.L. c. 30A, Sec 18, this meeting is being held via remote participation to the greatest extent possible. Every effort is being made to ensure that any member of the public may access the meeting in real time, via technological means. Agendas will be amended to show the link and participation code to access the meeting no sooner than 48 hours before. Recordings and/or draft proceedings of the meeting will be available on our website as soon as possible.


  1. Call to Order at 7:03

Roll Call: Chair-Hal Kobrin

Members-Rona Knight, Jim Kauffman, Barbara Gallagher, Jen Daily

Public-Stacey Schultze, Heather Morgan


  1. Approval of Minutes. Approval of July 13, 2020 Planning Board meeting minutes.

Hal makes motion to approve after changing the title from “agenda” to “minutes,” Rona seconds, all in favor.


  1. Solar Farm Bylaw update: Jim sent over a rough draft using much of Blandford’s language for the members to review.

Notes from Hal: the wording seems to encompass all ground mounted solar to include smaller residential units.  Perhaps a 3-tiered approach to small residential type units, medium, and large commercial/ municipal units could be expanded on.  Jen agrees that distinguishing between residential and commercial is needed.

Rona noted: The eyesore aspect should be addressed in the bylaw.  She also agrees that the home vs public uses should be addressed individually.  She also suggests adding an approval process to include ConCom.  She noted that the bylaw mentions displacement of environment but doesn’t follow the MA state law, this should be updated.  Whatever environmental changes occurred to wetlands areas, an equal area of non-wetlands would need to be designated wetlands.  Hal agrees about including ConCom.  Rona asked for clarification on what a cut off fixture is- Hal explained that it is a device that directs light so that it doesn’t disperse outward causing light pollution.  Rona suggests using the terminology from the marijuana bylaw for lighting restrictions.  She suggests changing the words site plan review authority to Planning Board.  Jen notes the word “sit” should be changed to “site.” Another typo in section should read 15 degrees.  Section Rona asked who oversees the fire regulations on site.  Hal informed the group that the Fire Chief would be the inspector for this task.  Stacey asked if the Fire Chief had specific training to inspect for this type of regulation.  Hal was certain that the Fire Chief has underwent training for this.  Jen suggest reaching out to verify or ask if sufficient funding has been made available for such training.  Rona suggests that the Fire Chief review the bylaws after they are completed but prior to approval.  Hal adds that the Building Inspector should also review for input.  Rona asked about keeping the option for a waiver in the bylaw.  Hal explained that it is a way to override the bylaw if a scenario presents itself where many of the terms are met but there are justifiable exemptions that could prevent complete compliance.


  1. Complete Streets Update—Application was approved with a 100% grade. Hal hopes the first project using these funds could be to update the street listing document.


  1. Hazard Mitigation Plan & MVP Grant Application update—MVP application has been submitted. Hal believes additional letters of support can be added and that they are useful in the selection process.  HMP—First meeting is 8/12 at 6:00.  Hal and Jen will attend and brief everyone at the next meeting.  Due to grant application and award timing, the Hazard planning is starting before the Complete Streets and MVP planning.


  1. Any Other Business, Old or New.


Jen makes a motion to adjourn at 7:33, Hal seconds, all in favor.


The Public was invited to attend using the following Zoom link.


Topic: Planning Board Meeting 8/10/2020

Time: Aug 10, 2020 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)


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Meeting ID: 880 9715 9909

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