Future planning for the town of Marion dominated the agenda at the Monday evening meeting of the Marion Planning Board.
“We are looking at the 2015 survey,” said member Ted North. “What do the people of Marion want the town to look like in twenty years,” he asked.
Board member Rico Ferrari spoke and said that he wanted the board to come up with a “Readers Digest” version of a ‘view of where we are and where we want to be in the future’.
Planning Board member Jay Ryder spoke and said that “The first thing to ask ourselves and the town is…do we need a Master Plan…the answer is …yes, we do,” said Ryder.
“A lot of work has already been done,” said Ryder. “ We had a 1995 survey, a 2015 Study, and back in 1998 there was a Marion Land Use Plan Survey done, so we have information that we need to combine,” said Ryder.
Ryder suggested that the board hire a consultant to help the board move forward with a plan for the future, for the town. A spirited discussion ensued and all agreed that it was a splendid idea.
Ryder, along with other Planning Board members noted that the town plans must adhere with state grant plans for matching funds for town planning in the future. Again he noted hiring a specialist, who knows about state granting issues would benefit the town.
A lively discussion ensued, with board member Rico Ferrari discussing a Route 6 Development Plan to encourage business in town versus keeping the village businesses intact.
“The 2015 Report asked for slow, limited, controlled growth in Marion,” said board member Ted North. “This is what Marion wants,” he said.
Steve Kokkins, a board member, spoke and said that seasonal and year-round residents input is very important and should be taken under consideration. “Some of our valued residents are only seasonal,” and we need to consider the impact of these residents on future planning,” said Kokkins.
Also on the agenda was the request for an ANR application for 407 Front Street. The applicant, Charles Blanchette, was seeking approval for a joining of two lots located at 407 Front Street, front and rear. Paul Matos, an engineer with GAF Engineering was on hand representing the applicant. The request was to combine the two lots into one, which the board approved.
The board approved minutes and bills from prior meetings before adjourning.
By Joan Hartnett-Barry