Planning Board Meeting Minutes 09/17/2018

Town of Otis

Planning Board Meeting Minutes

September 17, 2018

Town Hall Gymnasium




Meeting called to order at 7:00 pm in the Otis Town Hall Inspectors’ Room.  The meeting is recorded and a quorum is present.


Planning Board members

Present:           Michael Ernst, Jen Daily, Hal Kobrin, Terry Cook-Visser



Present:           Frank Tolopko, Terry Gould, Eve Kummel, Mary Kay Pinkham, Sandy Pinkham, Diane Saunders, Bob Rosen, Diane Dyer, Bill Dyer, David Richard, Patricia Richard, 306 Werden Road, Celeste Watman, Mimi Crandall, Stanley Koloski, Katherine Koloski, Jim Bilotta Jr., Russ Loring, Bill Hiller, Roxanne Caruso, Dave Caruso, Jim Crandall, Bud Bushey, Russ Kitson, Deborah Fogel, Jane Feldman, Judi Mabee, Jack Conboy, Mike Conboy, Lynn Pyenson, Sonia Morrison, Don Hawley, William Hyland, James Crandall Jr., Phil Magovern, George Mabee, Sabino Caracciolo, Wayne Moon, Rebecca Stone, Sara Slibski, Jeanne Randorf, Nick Hiller, Kathy Carroll, Jenna Leavenworth, James Falcha



Approval of Minutes:  The August 13, 2018 Planning Board meeting minutes were unanimously approved as written.  Terry Cook-Visser made the motion to accept and Hal Kobrin seconded.


Harmony Hall Public Hearing:  Michael began the Informational Public Hearing meeting at 7:00 pm by stating that we know the building may have historical significance but we are not here tonight to discuss that and we know the building needs repairs, but we are not here to decide that tonight either.  We are here to discuss what the townspeople would like to see the building used for when the Rec Center no longer uses this building.  Several citizens suggested we move the museum part of the Library into Harmony Hall’s first floor for walk-throughs.  Another resident suggested we use the main floor for a fine arts exhibition space.  Another suggestion was to set it up for an after school play space for the town children.  Another was to donate the building to either of the nearby churches.  It was noted that the second floor could be declared as inaccessible to the public and due to costs of repairs, the second floor probably will not be accessible to the public.  Towards the end of the meeting, Jen Daily, a Planning Board member, noted that Berkshire County no longer has any Regulation Houses in the county.  These were set up when the territory was first being settled.  She suggested we tear down the existing building, replace it with a replica of a Regulation House, and then house the Museum artifacts inside the Regulation House.  The Public Information Hearing was closed at 7:50 pm.


October Meeting:  All four Planning Board members noted the change from October 8, 2018 (Columbus Day Holiday) to October 15, 2018 was good and the changed date will be posted.  There is an ANR that is expected for that meeting.


Recreational Marijuana:  One member of the public asked what was being planned for the town and Michael Ernst informed everyone that a cultivation and manufacturing facility with no retail sales was being proposed for the site located at the corner of Route 8 and Dimmock Roads but the town has not been presented with any definitive plans for the site as yet.




Jen moved the meeting be adjourned, Terry seconded, and the meeting was unanimously adjourned at 7:55 pm.


Respectfully Submitted,

Lisa D’Orazio

Planning Board Clerk

Town of Otis


List of Documents


  1. A copy of the Notice of Public Information Hearing for Harmony hall will be filed with these meeting minutes.


  1. A copy of the document discussing the work required to fix up Harmony Hall will be filed with these meeting minutes.


  1. A copy of the document estimating the costs to repair Harmony Hall will be filed with these meeting minutes.


  1. A copy of the proposed notice for public about the change of October’s Planning Board meeting date will be filed with these meeting minutes.