ConCom Using Continuances to Aid Hearing Process

            Mattapoisett’s Conservation Commission Chairman Mike King has honed the virtual meeting process to allow both petitioners and the public ample opportunity and time to review proposed projects subject to the jurisdiction of the Wetlands Protection Act.

            Before each meeting, King reads from prepared notes outlining not only the validity of remote meetings as granted by the Governor Baker’s emergency directives but also the processes deemed necessary for the smooth operation of remote meetings. To that end, King asks everyone who plans on speaking to confirm their attendance and to keep their comments to 10 minutes in duration to give everyone a fair shot at being heard. Rebuttal by the petitioner or their representatives is also granted.

            While less complex applications such as Requests For Determination Of Applicability are heard and deliberation taken during the same meeting, more highly complex filings such as Notices Of Intent are all currently being continued to give the public and interested parties plenty of time to study the project and associated documentation.

            Thusly, during the July 28 meeting only two RDA’s reached a consensus vote by the commission with seven others, one RDA and six NOI’s, continued.

            One NOI garnering the most attention by the public on this night was a filing by Alexander Bauer for property located at 7 Nashawena Road in the privately held Antassawamock Beach Association.

            Representing Bauer was N. Douglas Schneider, who said the project consisted of tearing down the existing structure and rebuilding a residence that would include a slab on grade, rear patio area that would allow the flow of stormwater towards “a natural low area in the rear of the lot.”

            A letter submitted by Robert Field of Field Engineering on behalf of abutter David Behenna of 31 Antassawamock Road questioned the drainage plan. Field’s comments included a request that roof runoff be collected through a drainage system that would send the water into an underground recharge system.

            Other abutters echoed concerns that grade change to the lot would allow stormwater to drain onto their property. Also sharing their drainage concerns were Joseph Cosgrove, 5 Nashawena Road, Bill Guss, 9 Mattakiset Road, and Bill Straus, 8 Nashawena Road. While the majority of comments centered around drainage issues, Cosgrove also asked if there was anything that could be done to ensure that the construction would be started and completed in a timely fashion versus, “dragging on for years.”           Behenna said there were other issues regarding zoning that would be taken up when the project applied for a Special Permit through the Zoning Board of Appeals. Guss said he believed that not all abutters had received notification of the public hearing and he, in fact, had not received such notification. And Straus questioned plans that seemed to grant the applicant the right to remove trees and remediate a private roadway that did not belong to Bauer.

            To each uttered concern, King said he was sure Schneider would fully address such matters and that he had “full confidence” in his willingness and ability to do so.

            Also on the call was Director of Inspectional Services Andy Bobola, who asked those with zoning questions contact his office directly. He said he was happy to work with the abutters. The hearing was continued until August 10 at 6:30 pm.

            An NOI filed by Bruce Rocha Sr., 13 Sea Marsh Way, for construction of a single-family home on pilings, received conditioning upon the reopening of the public hearing. King said any issues with the pilings planned for the elevated structure, “…are between you and the building department.”

            Earlier in the evening an RDA filed by Stephen and Paula Zevitas, 1 Indian Avenue, for changes to an existing deck and porch, received a negative determination of applicability, as did Tina Roberts, 12 Captain’s Way, for a screened porch in a FEMA Flood Zone. Dr. Dale Leavitt, Blue Stream Shellfish, LLC, NOI filings received a permit to cultivate marine bivalves and macroalgae, aka, seaweed on a 10-acre parcel in Nasketucket Bay.

            Continued until August 10 were: an RDA filed by George Payne, 55 Brandt Island Road, for a deck and above-ground pool; Craig Bovaird, 26R Pine Island Road, residential additional and in-ground pool; Brian and Patricia O’Neil, 11 Mechanic Street, for a garage and porch addition; and Jesse Davidson, 22 Pine Island Road, for modification to a plan of record.

            An extension for an Order of Conditions was granted to Gregor Huntoon, 0 Selha Road. The Town of Mattapoisett requested a change to the plan of record for improvements to Industrial Drive. The approved modification is a tractor-trailer turnaround area. A Certificate of Compliance was issued to Martin Lomp, 45 Mattapoisett Neck Road.

            The next meeting of the Mattapoisett Conservation Commission is scheduled for August 10 at 6:30 pm. Remote meeting details will be published at

Mattapoisett Conservation Commission

By Marilou Newell

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