Cat Shelter Addition Gets Approval

The cats that call It’s All About the Animals home will soon be purring in their new ‘cat room’ and porch addition now that Pam and Oren Robinson, owners of the cat shelter at 103 Marion Road, finally received the approval they’d been seeking from the Rochester Planning Board.

On September 14, Planning Board Chairman Arnold Johnson said the waiver list for the Site Plan Review looked good to him and, although it might have taken some time for the rather simple and straightforward project to move through the review process, the board was ready to take a vote.

Ms. Robinson clapped upon the approval, with Planning Board member Lee Carr adding, “The cats will be happy.”

“They will,” replied Robinson, “And so will I.”

Johnson reminded Robinson that she would need to schedule a pre-construction conference before starting work after the 20-day appeal period is over and meet with public safety officials as well. There would also be a subsequent site visit, at which time Johnson said he had been dared by someone to leave the site without adopting a cat, a challenge he said he’s accepted.

Also during the meeting, – aside from a virtual Willy Wonka-esque gathering with heaping bowls of candy and chocolates, a new tradition for apparent sweet-toothed board members – ABC Disposal, Inc. CEO Michael Camara had a brief meeting with the board regarding the Zero Waste recycling processing facility off Cranberry Highway.

Johnson said that discussions with town counsel revealed that the company is indeed allowed to invest money into some of the short-term fixes that are needed to bring the site up to par with the board and public safety officials, contrary to what Camara thought before, as he explained his challenges with securing financing for the project.

“I was up there today,” said Planning Board member Michael Murphy. “I was really impressed as far as how clean the inside was…. From what I could see, they’re trying their best to get everything squared away. I think they’re on the right path.”

Pot holes were to be completed that following Saturday, and other minor fixes pertaining to stormwater management would be completed soon after.

Board member Gary Florindo suggested the board at some point give Camara a timeframe for work completion with a follow-up site visit before winter.

In other matters, Dan Webb for Meadowatt, developers of a solar farm slated for 188-190 Marion Road (Route 105) presented some relatively minor changes to the plan to the board, mostly pertaining to utility pole locations, a metering pad, and fencing. The board deemed there was no need for a formal vote for the changes.

The next meeting of the Rochester Planning Board is scheduled for September 27 at 7:00 pm at the Rochester Town Hall.

By Jean Perry


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