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Zoning Board of Adjustment Minutes 11/07/06

November 7, 2006 meeting

Members & Staff Present:

John Giffin     
Bradley Houseworth
Len Pagano
Paul Vasques
Don Winchester
Member Absent:

Carol Court     
Doug Crafts
John Kendall
Paul Young
Public Attendees:

Brenda Flinkstrom
Kevin Flinkstrom

Due to the absence of the Chairman and Vice Chairman, Mr. Vasques (Secretary) acted as Chairman pro-tem and convened the meeting at 7:20 PM.  He introduced himself, asked the Board members to introduce themselves, and explained the process of the public hearing and how the meeting will be conducted.

Flinkstrom, Brenda and Kevin - File # 2006-13ZBA:  Mr. Vasques opened the public meeting on the request of Kevin and Brenda Flinkstrom for a variance to Article XVI Section C.1.  The applicant proposes to expand a non-conforming structure which is within the 50-foot front yard setback on property located at 1161 Concord Street (Rt. 202), Tax map 7, Lot 93 in the Highway Business District.  Chairman pro-tem Vasques asked the applicant to present their proposal to the Board.

Mr. Flinkstrom explained that they wish to put a new roof on their house because of a lack of ventilation and a real bad mold problem.  Mr. Pagano asked the applicants if the point of their project is to mitigate mold and increase ventilation, Mr. Flinkstrom replied yes.  Mr. Pagano stated that it appears that what the applicants are doing is increasing the volume in the interior considerably.  Mr. Flinkstrom agreed.  Mr. Pagano asked Mr. Flinkstrom if he is planning on doing improvements to the interior with some attic space, Mr. Flinkstrom replied that there are two (2) bedrooms currently upstairs, one will remain the same, while the other bedroom on the other side of the house will gain a little height and interior volume.  Mr. Flinkstrom explained that the kitchen ceiling will be slightly raised in height and the volume will increase slightly in the front of the house.  Mr. Flinkstrom reviewed the submitted drawing of the house with the Board, explaining what exists and what will be raised by approximately two and a half (2.5) feet.  

Mr. Pagano stated that there is obviously a benefit to the applicants by raising the roof by two and a half (2.5) feet and adding additional volume to the interior; the applicants agreed.  Mr. Pagano stated that if the projects’ intent was solely based on correcting ventilation and mold problems, there are other ways to do it without building a fairly substantial and costly structure.  Mr. Pagano stated that he just wanted to make it clear that other options are available to the applicants to address the lack of ventilation and mold issues.  Mr. Pagano stated that the applicants need to keep in mind that if the project is not done correctly, the mold and ventilation problems may not go away or be properly addressed.  Mr. Flinkstrom agreed and stated that he understands this.  

Mr. Vasques asked the Board if there were any other questions from the Board, there were none.  He closed the public meeting, opened the public hearing, and asked if any abutters were present that would like to speak in favor or against the proposal.  No abutters were present, he closed the public hearing, and opened the public meeting for the deliberation of the Board.  Mr. Vasques called the Board’s attention to Section C.1. (Non-Conforming Structures) in Article XVI of the Antrim Zoning Ordinances, which states that any existing structure which is non-conforming may be enlarged or extended upon granting of a Variance by the Zoning Board of Adjustment.  He advised the Board that this application is for an ‘area’ variance, as distinguished from a ‘use’ variance, and reviewed the six criteria to be used by the Board in determining whether to grant the area variance.  

Chairman pro-tem Vasques asked the Board if they had any further questions or are they ready for a roll call vote.  Mr. Scales made a motion that a roll call vote be taken.  Mr. Pagano seconded the motion which passed.  Mr. Winchester refrained from voting because he was late to the public meeting.  Roll Call vote:

1.      The value of surrounding properties will not be diminished.
Role call vote: Mr. Scales – aye, Mr. Pagano – aye, Mr. Giffin – aye.
2.      The variance will not be contrary to the public interest.
Role call vote: Mr. Scales – aye, Mr. Pagano – aye, Mr. Giffin – aye.
3.      Special conditions exist such that literal enforcement of the ordinance results in unnecessary hardship as follows:
A) An area variance is needed to enable the applicant’s proposed use of the property given the special conditions of the property.  
Role call vote: Mr. Scales – aye, Mr. Pagano – aye, Mr. Giffin – aye.
B) The benefit sought by the applicant cannot be achieved by some other method reasonably feasible for the applicant to pursue, other than an area variance.  
Role call vote: Mr. Scales – aye, Mr. Pagano – aye, Mr. Giffin – aye.
4.      Substantial justice is done.  
Role call vote: Mr. Scales – aye, Mr. Pagano – aye, Mr. Giffin – aye.
5.      The variance is consistent with the spirit of the ordinance.  
Role call vote: Mr. Scales – aye, Mr. Pagano – aye, Mr. Giffin – aye.

Mr. and Mrs. Flinkstrom were advised that the variance had been granted and they would receive an official notice of decision in the mail, signed by Chairman Winchester.  

Approve ZBA Meeting Minutes:  Mr. Scales made a motion to table the approval of the minutes of the September 26, 2006 meeting to the next meeting.  Mr. Giffin seconded the motion which passed.

Updated ZBA Membership Roster:  Mr. Vasques advised the Board that their contact information, including e-mail addresses, has been updated.  He also advised the Board that the Planning Staff will no longer be mailing the Zoning Board of Adjustment paperwork and materials to the members’ homes but instead will make folders available at Town Hall to all members prior to any future meetings with all of the necessary paperwork, maps, tax cards, etc.  He stated that the staff will be using e-mail more frequently.

Torino Development – Possible Variance to the application of the wetland overlay district to cluster housing development:  Chairman pro-tem Vasques advised the Board of an application that is currently in front of the Planning Board, which may come before the Zoning Board of Adjustment, regarding a need for a variance to the wetlands and steep slopes overlay districts.  He explained that the applicant, Torino Development, is proposing an eight (8) to twelve (12) lot cluster housing subdivision on Tax Map 7, Lot 102-1 off of Rt. 202, near the NH DOT rest area, in the Highway Business District.

Mr. Vasques explained to the Board that Mr. Torino may appeal to the Zoning Board of Adjustment for a variance to the overlay zoning districts’ minimum lot size requirements.  He stated that Mr. Torino would only spend the time and money of going to the Zoning Board of Adjustment if he could get a preliminary consensus from the Planning Board that they approve of the proposed number of lots and their sizes.

Mr. Houseworth recommended that, should such an appeal be filed, the Zoning Board of Adjustment members request the written opinion of the Planning Board.

ZBA Educational Materials – “A Tale of Two Hardship”:  Mr. Vasques advised the Board of a handout from a recent NH OEP Conference called, “A Tale of Two Hardships,” describing the differences between use and area variances and describing the numerous court cases that have lead up to this differentiation and the court cases since.  

Mr. Scales moved to adjourn the meeting.  Mr. Pagano seconded the motion which passed.  Chairman pro-tem Vasques adjourned the meeting at 8:10 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Bradley J. Houseworth,
Planning Technician
Antrim Zoning Board of Adjustment

Town of Antrim, NH P.O. Box 517, 66 Main Street Antrim, NH 03440
Phone: (603) 588-6785    Fax: (603) 588-2969    Monday - Thursday 8:00am - 4:00pm
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