2020 Raymond Planning Board Meetings

Raymond Planning Board Moves Zoning Amendments to the 2021 Warrant
By Penny Williams  12-21-20

The Raymond Planning Board discussed and ultimately voted to move all ten proposed Zoning Amendments to the Warrant at their Thursday night, December 17, meeting.

The board spent a lot of time discussing each proposed zoning amendment and even considered  moving 2 of them to the next meeting, but decided that it was not necessary and pushed all 10 to the ballot with just some minor grammatical changes

The ten proposed Zoning Amendments are as follows:

* Amendment No. 1 – To amend the language of Wetlands - 2.9.1 to include language that describes the benefits of wetland function as it relates to drinking water.

* Amendment No. 2 – To amend the purposes of the Conservation District to include maintaining the health and water storage function of wetlands. 

* Amendment No. 3 – To amend the boundaries of the Shoreland Protection area to include any area within 100 feet of any priority wetland.

* Amendment No. 4 – To increase the setback from wetlands in the Conservation District from 25 to 75 feet for regular wetlands and to 100 feet for Priority Wetlands, and to relocate this requirement from Section 15.3.2 (which will be deleted) to a new section 15.1.4.

* Amendment No. 5 – To remove the Sewer Overlay District.

* Amendment No. 6 – To add section to state that ADU’s require the same level of inspections as a Certificate of Occupancy.

* Amendment No. 7 – To add a new section 2.15 to the General Provisions requiring that all agriculture and farming activities be conducted in accordance with the NH Department of Agriculture “Manual of Best Management Practices;” and to require that the keeping of livestock conform to the UNH Cooperative Extension “Housing and Space Guidelines for Livestock.” 

* Amendment No. 8 – To add a new definition of Agriculture to define the term as set forth in state law; and to amend the definition of Non-Commercial Agriculture to include the agricultural use of land accessory to a residential use regardless of size.

* Amendment No. 9 – To add definitions of Private Nuisance and Public Nuisance.

* Amendment No. 10 – To add a definition of Workforce Housing to define that term as set forth in state law. 

The board went over the two Petition Zoning Amendments, noting the board can't alter them in any way.

The Petitions came from the Raymond Coalition for Youth Association and dealt with prohibition of any signage in Raymond for marijuana and prohibition of any private or commercial sale of marijuana in Raymond. The board forwarded them to the Warrant as presented.

Arleigh Green, owner of Hard Rock Excavation, asked the board to discuss in what way the operation of his pit is not in compliance with the regulations. Board member Gretchen Gott noted she had brought up what she considered violations of the regulations at the pit at the previous meeting. Trucks accessing the pit after it is closed and leaving with a load.

The issue of trucks coming into the pit to get a load of product (rocks) after the closing hour happens fairly often, Gott said. Green stated that this does happen when there is an emergency and it is usually the Town coming in for product.

Gott pointed out there is no  provision for emergency pick-up of product after hours. The board members discussed this and Green and the board agreed the Planning Board should address this issue in a meeting with Green and the Hard Rock Pit Contractor, Steve Chase. The board asked Chase to contact Planning Board Assistant Stephanie Gardner to set up a meeting date to address this issue.

Raymond Planning Board Discuss Main Street 180 Unit Combo Residential/Industrial Development
By Penny Williams  11-9-20

Thursday evening, November 5, the Raymond Planning Board heard from Michael Garrepy, Garrepy Planning Consultants LLC. on behalf of Tuck Realty Corporation, about a possible 180 apartment unit development with a possible Industrial segment, to be developed off of Main Street. The application for a pre-application review of this proposed plan was submitted by Jones and Beach Engineers.

Garrepy indicated the residential section would include 180 apartments, tentatively 90 2 bedroom units and 88 1 bedroom apartments or condominiums in three four story buildings, each of which would have 60 units, on the 67 acre parcel off Main Street which has 4 frontages on Main Street. The proposed 268 bedrooms would use up all of the allowed density on the property. However, he affirmed that if there were more two bedroom units and perhaps even some three bedroom units that would reduce the actual overall number of total units in the development.

The parcel is in the Industrial Zone but in the Sewer Overlay so both residential and industrial development can take place on the property. It was noted that if in the final analysis both residential and industrial development were to take place, the likelihood is the whole parcel would be subdivided to accommodate this.

The three proposed residential buildings would have community septic systems and community water. By Raymond zoning only 25 percent of the parcel can be used and that would be limited by density regulation to 16 bedrooms per acre in that 25 percent area. The plan as presented had a single point of access between two lots on Main Street - 95 and 97 Main Street. It was noted that this access would be 22-feet wide.

Garrepy said a possible industrial development on the property outside the residential development and the accompanying open space area is a possibility although he said he is leaning more towards just a residential development.

The majority of the discussion revolved around board and public comment concerns with the proposed development. Among those concerns, not necessarily in order of precedence, are: traffic concerns, parking issues, environmental and community impact, wetlands impact, water resource impact,  growth control concerns,  residential abutter property valuation impact, natural habitat impact, and school impact.

Garrepy indicated that all these concerns would be addressed through studies. Board member Gretchen Gott was concerned as was resident Mike Bergeron that such studies be done by independent sources and Chair Jonathan Wood indicated that surveys are done by accredited licensed consultants. Garrepy confirmed that he has only spoken to some of the abutters but intends to speak with all of them.

The biggest discussion centered around access off and to Main Street and the impact that this amount of traffic, hundreds of daily trips, would have. Several questioned whether the access point identified could work and whether fire trucks could make that turn around and then deal safely with the steep incline. There were questions about whether a sidewalk leading into town could be included and Garrepy said yes if there is available space to do so. He offered an alternate access to the downtown area through trails from the property.

The board members indicated they felt it was difficult to make any definitive statement regarding the proposal without having a site plan to review. Most felt they needed more information and that the results of the impact studies would be very important.  

The purpose of the plan, according to Garrepy, is to provide housing that has access to downtown. Garrepy said it seems to him that there is a market driven need for this kind of housing and several board members were concerned with what level of housing would be involved. Garrepy said section 8 housing would not be but that possibly work place housing might be.

Garrepy indicated that he would be back before the board down the road with a fully developed site plan but that much planning and research still needed to be done. He thanked the board for their thoughts and suggestions that were the point of the pre-application  review.

The board got into a back and forth with Gott over member Brad  Reed's motion to accept as presented the Excavation Reports submitted by Planning Coordinator Stephanie Gardner.

Gott contended that there are violations being committed at the Hard Rock Pit.  There was a lengthy discussion about this but in the end the board approved accepting the Excavation Reports as presented. They also agreed to meet in a workshop and develop  a better form for checking on excavation pit compliance and have it ready for Gardner to have for future inspections.

The next meeting is scheduled for November 19.


Raymond Planning Board Continues Agriculture Zoning Amendment Discussion
By Penny Williams    10-16-20

The Raymond Planning Board continued its discussion of an amendment to the town's Agriculture Zoning regulation on Thursday evening, October 15.

The discussion resulted from complaints about residents on small lots keeping chickens. At the boards last meeting they discussed how to fashion an amendment to the town's zoning and continued it to this meeting. The board held a Public Hearing on possible changes to the town's Agriculture Ordinance and the discussion about chickens came about because the current ordinance in Raymond disallows Livestock on properties with less than 2 acres and includes chickens in the livestock category.  There was a Citizens Petition to allow an ordinance change to allow chickens on properties less than 2 acres.

The core of the previous discussion was the need to remove chickens and fowls from the current Livestock Ordinance that requires 2 acres. There was no clear path to exactly how to then frame an ordinance for chickens and other fowls but the majority seemed to think that the RSAs on Livestock had everything in it that would be needed. Chair Jonathan Wood asked the board members to carefully review the RSAs and the town's Agriculture zoning regulation and decide how and where they would recommend changes to address the chicken issue. and be prepared to discuss this at  the October 15, meeting.

There was a long discussion Thursday evening but the board essentially settled on considering adopting the state's RSA 21:34a in total as well as adding the University of New Hampshire Extension's document on housing space for livestock which Wood felt added some necessary elements not covered in the RSA.

Member Gretchen Gott didn't disagree but thought that some Raymond specific restrictions should be included but further she wanted an Agriculture Commission to be created. It was suggested that a Board of Selectmen sub-committee on Agriculture might be more appropriate.

The board discussed the Derry nuisance definitions regarding both private and public nuisance as being a good thing to have in their zoning especially since roosters were not addressed and they could be annoyingly loud.

Wood asked the board what they wanted to do - do nothing or adopt the RSA as a start. After further discussion is was decided that an ordinance should be developed that used the RSA, the UNH Extension document and the nuisance definitions and brought back to the next meeting of the board for further discussion.

It was noted this would ultimately require a Warrant Article for adoption but the first hearing on the proposed ordinance could be held at the December 17, meeting leaving time for a second hearing on January 7 and still a third if needed before the due date of January 25. The board decided to move forward in this way.

The board approved the  request of Walter Paige Jr. for a lot line adjustment between two properties at 128 Chester Road. The proposal would move the existing lot line between the two properties at this address taking 0.1 acre  from Lot 56 making it  a 7.2 acre lot and adding the 0.1 acre to Lot 54 making it an 0.5 acre lot.

The reason for this would be to have the residence on Lot 54 and its swimming pool all be on that residential lot. At present the pool is partially on Lot 56.  The developer, Dennis McKenney, said the plan is to sell both lots separately down the road so the owner wishes to straighten this out.

The board discussed the application. There was a brief discussion regarding the bounds markers. They are now iron and the town zoning calls for the front two on a property to be granite. The board voted to approve the markers being iron and then voted to approved the request.

The board approved Planning Board member Kendra Ferm as their representative as a member of the CIP.

Raymond Planning Board Discuss Agriculture Ordinance on Lots Less than Two Acres
By Penny Williams    10-5-2020

The Raymond Planning Board met Thursday night, October 1, and the majority of the meeting was devoted to  chickens.

The board held a Public Hearing on possible changes to the town's Agriculture Ordinance. The discussion about chickens came about because the current ordinance in Raymond that disallows Livestock on properties less than 2 acres includes chickens in the livestock.  There was a Citizens Petition to allow an ordinance change to allow chickens on properties less than 2 acres.

Board Chair Jonathan Wood  provided the board with a document to be viewed as a framework for the community discussion on the keeping of poultry. The document included chickens, roosters an other types of poultry starting with a less than 1/4 acre lot suggesting that a maximum of 4 hens be allowed if the chickens are free range but chickens permitted if enclosed. Roosters would not be permitted regardless of whether they are free range or enclosed on a less than 1/4 acre properties. Other foul such as dicks, and geese would allow 2 if free range and permitted if enclosed.

For properties 1/4 acre to less than 1/2 acre 10 maximum chickens would be allowed if free range and permitted if enclosed but still no Roosters. On this size property there would be 6 ducks or geese allowed if free range and if enclosed permitted.

On properties 1/2 acre to less than 1 acre and 2 + acres, hens and roosters would be permitted as would ducks and geese both free range and enclosed as they would ducks and geese.

Wood make it clear these were just to frame the community conversation and wasn't  a final ordinance. He read into the record a letter from Wayne Welch that suggested the RSAs dealing with livestock provided all the town needs to provide opportunities for families to raise chickens on their properties.

A number of residents participated on both sides of the discussion. Patricia Bridigeo felt that education not legislation was needed to address this issue.  Several residents who have chickens spoke in favor of allowing fenced in chicken yards and properly contained chicken food and manure management practices.

The core of the discussion was the need to remove chickens and fowls from the current Livestock Ordinance that requires 2 acres. There was no clear path to exactly how to then frame an ordinance for chickens and other fowls but the majority seemed to think that the RSAs on Livestock had everything in it that would be needed. Several suggested not trying to reinvent the wheel and to keep it simple by using the RSAs to address the issue for Raymond.

Wood asked the board members to carefully review the RSAs and the town's Agriculture zoning regulation and decide how and where they would recommend changes to address the chicken issue. It will be back on the agenda for the October 15, meeting.

The board looked at the suggested edits by the Town Attorney to the Water Quality Zoning Amendment. After a brief discussion the board members voted to approve the Zoning Amendment as edited by the attorney.

The board looked at the ADU Zoning amendment and no one had any issues with it. It goes to the attorney next for approval.

The board reviewed the Planning Board building permit recommendation that would see the 13 Smith Pond Road building construction approved. The approval would be subject to the hold harmless document from the homeowner regarding the road maintenance and homeowner transportation of students to the school bus stop.

The board decided to continue their meetings using Zoom.

The board then went over the process needed to address the Unified Development Site Plan for Granite Meadows that has expired and is no longer valid. At the next meeting the board will need to go over the history and reasons for the need to revoke the approval of the site plan and at the meeting following that they would vote on the revocation.

Raymond Planning Board Reviews Water Quality Draft Ordinances
By Penny Williams  8-21-20

The Raymond Planning Board met Thursday evening, August 20, and reviewed the Water Quality Draft Ordinances for the changes and amendments made and approved during their August 6, meeting.

The Planning Board Assistant, Stephanie Gardner, presented the board with the 2020 Draft Zoning Amendments relating to Water Quality. There were changes made to 5 areas that had been discussed and approved on August 6, and were being reviewed to ensure the board members had no further changes or questions.

The board was satisfied with the document and the only discussion again centered around the use of the word Discourage rather Prohibit as it is used in that states," Discourage the following activities in Raymond's Shorelands Protection Area and within 100 feet of any priority wetland (See map A (Priority Wetlands)): any alteration of stream paths; landscaping; mowing; dumping of litter or trash, storage of grass clippings, leaves or snow; use of fertilizer; and/or pesticides.

On this issue, a letter from Carolyn Matthews, indicated that Discourage was the better choice since it allows for education and avoids conflicts. Her letter also discussed the Wetlands Inventory that favors the use of Priority ranking of Raymond wetlands rather than using the State's Prime Wetlands ranking.  It was noted that the ordinance changes will have to have a public hearing, then be voted on by the Planning Board for inclusion on the 2021 Warrant. The public hearing will take place the end of October or the first of November.

The board approved the document with the changes they had previously approved. They then discussed the upcoming issue involving possibly developing an ordinance for chickens.

Raymond allows livestock on properties of 2 acres or more but residents have requested a change to allow chicken to be kept on smaller lots. The board discussed this and it will be dealt with at the board's October 1, meeting. Interested residents are encouraged to come up with suggestions for the ordinance and were invited to attend that meeting with their suggestions.

Member Gretchen Gott noted residents may not know how to properly word a zoning ordinance. It was noted that when this was previously discussed an ordinance relative to this issue was obtained from Durham and this can be used as a basis for a Raymond ordinance. This will be sent to interested parties seeking the ordinance.

In the discussion, it came out that there is no reference in the water quality ordinances regarding  animal waste. The state does have Best Practices Livestock Management guidance. The board may want to consider adding something regarding animal waste to the water quality ordinances.

The board decided to continue with Zoom meetings until at least October 1. Gott felt it was important to see what the return to school impacts might be before considering going back to regular in person meetings.

The board appointed Gardner to the Rockingham Planning Commission as well as member Kendra Ferm. Alyssa Welch is still a member.

The board appointed Paul Lynn as an alternate member of the Planning Board and he sat as a voting member for the majority of the meeting until Ferm arrived.

The board will be looking at Town Manager Joe Ilsley's request that the Sewer Overlay and the Tax Increment Finance District be removed at their next meeting along with the Application of a Change of Use submitted by John Bosen on behalf of Nellie Real Estate Acquisitions LLC that seeks to convert the existing second floor office space into 3 residential units. This was continued from the August 20 meeting to the September 3 meeting at the applicants' request in order to address some incorrect information on the original plan.

Looking ahead. there will be 2 Change of Use applications and the Bosen application at the September 3, meeting with an application for small addition to Jackson Lumber set for the September 17, meeting.


Raymond Planning Board Reviews Proposed Wetland Zoning Amendments
By Penny Williams   8-7-20

The Raymond Planning Board met on Thursday evening, August 6, to review the Town Engineering firm, DuBois and King, Draft Zoning Amendments to Zoning amendment 4.

The board responded to one call in question/comment where a resident voiced concern about the taking of their property and indicated the proposed change of wetland lot line from 25 feet to 75 feet would result in a taking of their property and reduce their property value. The response was that the properties under discussion are only in the Priority Wetlands or the Shoreland Protection areas. Member Gretchen Gott added that there are specific actions already enumerated about things landowners can't do within the wetland setbacks.


There was an addition of language that provides a cleared explanation of the purpose and the goal of the amendment.  The goal is to show the benefit of wetland functions as it relates to drinking water, This was to acknowledge the majority of drinking water comes from ground water supply source and further the wetlands provide the chief source of recharge and serve to filter and enhance water quality. The board had no issues with the proposed changes and additional language.

However, there was a discussion about changing the word 'discourage' to prohibited in the proposed amendment but the board voted to continue to use the word 'discourage.'

A sentence was added to clarify that a Special Permit must be obtained from the Planning Board for activity involved in the Conservation wetland setbacks. And, the lotline setbacks for the wetlands will be increased from 25 feet to 75 feet and in some special areas to 100 feet such as within the priority wetland areas. There were a couple of corrections on where the specified footage appears.

It was noted that these changes once made will be brought back before the board and Chair Jonathan Wood asked this be on the agenda for the September meeting. Then the finalized proposed zoning amendments will go before a Public Hearing in late fall or early winter before being placed on the 2021 Town Warrant.

Wood also asked that there be a discussion at the next board meeting on August 20, regarding whether to continue with Zoom meetings or to move to in-person meetings.

If you want to watch the whole meeting click on  RCTV August 6, Planning Board Meeting on Raymond Cable Television


Raymond Planning Board Conditionally Approves JCR Construction Site Plan
By Penny Williams     6-5-20

   The Raymond Planning Board on Thursday evening, June 4, conditionally approved the site plan for JCR Construction presented by Tobin Farwell Engineering Services. The site plan presented shows its replacement in the footprint (less 30-feet) with a steel Morton building. The Thursday night meeting addressed the issues raised at the initial hearing held May 21.

   On May 21 the board learned the new JCR Construction company steel Morton building would be heated with lights inside. The change in the building's construction material does not change the amount of run off or increase the impervious surface so the waivers sought at the May 21 meeting, one for relief from drainage standards and storm water requirements and relief from the landscape and buffer requirements, were both approved. There was also a request for information regarding the heating fuel and where it would be located.

   Letters from abutters in the adjacent residential zone complained about the noise that at times is 24 hours a day and the light from the building. The board asked Farwell to reach out to abutters regarding the noise and light issues at the May 21 meeting, but he said during the June 4, meeting he had not done so as yet.

   Thursday evening, Farwell responded to the issues that had been raised at the previous meeting. First showing on the updated site plan the location of the propane tank that would fuel the heat for the building. He also stated that all the lighting is downward facing and complies with the Town's Dark Sky Ordinance.

   Member Gretchen Gott and the board requested, as a condition of approval, that there be a propane icon placed on the site plan indicating the location and Farwell agreed. He showed the board where he had noted the lighting information on the site plan documents.

   There was a discussion about the landscaping and Planning Board Secretary Christina McCarthy said she had done a site walk and the buffer zones that had been required as of the 2009 site plan approval for this site had been met and were in compliance and should act to reduce any noise and light for residents. Farwell added that the metal insulated building would also significantly reduce any noise or light pollution. He added that no additional outside lighting is proposed but should any be added in the future it would have to comply with the Town's lighting requirements.

   There was further discussion about whether the site plan had to be filed at the Registry of  Deeds or just at Raymond Town Hall. In the end it was agreed that it has to be filed with the Registry and Farwell said he would get the documents to Town Hall where they will be signed and McCarthy said she will get them filed at the Registry.

   The board voted unanimously to conditionally approve the site plan application. The usual conditions were enumerated along with the specific conditions of the two approved waivers and that (1) the documents need to be filed at the Registry of Deeds: (2) that the aerial photo on the plans would be removed so the Registry would accept the filing, and , (3) that the propane icon be placed on the location of the propane tank on the plan.

In Other Business:

* At the May 21 meeting, the board approved and swore in alternate member Paul Lynn.

* Also at the May 21 meeting, the board approved Eversource's request for trimming and removing trees and bush adjacent to and beneath some of the power lines along Long Hill Road.

* Kendra Firm volunteered to be the Planning Board liaison to the CIP.

* McCarthy said advertising for a Planning Board Secretary will be going out again. McCarthy has been appointed as Town Clerk for Town of Raymond.

* The next Planning Board meeting will be on June 18, and will deal with Infrastructure as it relates to the Master Plan.

Raymond Planning Board Reorganizes and Hears Site Plan Application
 By Penny Williams     5-9-20

   The Raymond Planning Board met Thursday evening, May 7, and reorganized, then heard the site plan application of I.C. Reed & Sons, 9 Evans Drive, presented by Joe Coronati, Jones & Beach Engineers.

    The reorganization of the board saw Jonathan Wood reappointed as Chair and Bob Wentworth as Vice Chair. John Beavilliers will be the secretary for the board.

    After member Brad Reed stepped down from the board, Coronati presented the site plan for a one story office building with a cold storage garage and a separate garage with associated parking. The board accepted the site plan application as complete and after a brief discussion determined there was no regional impact.

   Coronati stated there was no change to the site's operational process and no net gain of personnel or traffic, but, there would be a reduction in lighting and a decrease in the total impervious surface.

   The lighting became a subject of discussion with board member Gretchen Gott objecting to one of the lights on a pole at the corner of the lot not facing down. After a discussion, Coronati made agreed to remove this pole light and to attach some appropriate lights to the back of the building.

   There will be a new driveway entrance off of Evans Drive directly to the new building. All visitors and deliveries to the site will enter through this driveway and access the office building clearing the main yard. The new office building will have 5 or 6 offices and there will be 11 parking spaces and a gated entrance to the lot. The new building will be dual use on a slab with an attached garage. The building will be sprinkled. The site plan received a Variance from the Raymond Zoning Board of Adjustment (ZBA) for not sprinkling the cold storage garage.

   Coronati said they have applied for an AOT for the modification to the site but only minor modifications have been made. DuBois & King, town engineers, have signed off on the site plan. The exterior fencing in the lot will be extended to the new office building but the building will be seen by those driving by.

    The new office building will have a new foundation and slab which will be placed at grade with the sidewalk. Areas of cement have been removed and the new slab poured.  Propane tanks are buried in the back of the building and the generator is on a slab at the back of the building. The septic is in the back and they are waiting for the septic permit which is waiting for approval of the AOT. They have the necessary Shoreland Permit in hand.

   A waiver was requested allowing them not to have a certified Landscape Architect. They used L M Landscape Design whose owner is not an architect but whose landscape designing is excellent and used many times.

   This lead to a discussion on  a concern raised by Gott over whether all the plantings in the landscape design are native to New Hampshire. After a discussion Wood suggested making it a condition that the plantings be native to New England and Coronati said that would work. The board approved the waiver.

   The routine Conditions of Approval were read and the specific conditions regarding the lighting being all down facing and dark sky compliant and the plantings to be native New England and no invasive species included were added in addition to the two waivers that had been granted, one for not sprinkling the cold storage garage approved by the ZBA and the waiver approved by the board for not requiring the plan to use a Landscape Architect. The board voted unanimously to conditionally approve the site plan.

In Other Business:

* Christina McCarthy, Planning Board Administrative Assistant who has been appointed Raymond Tax Collector has not been replaced. Gott asked for an update regarding replacement at the next meeting.

* Brad Reed volunteered to be the Planning Board representative on the ZBA.

* Board member George Plante, liaison from the Selectmen, reviewed the Selectmen's meeting that took place earlier that day regarding the opening of the Pine Acres Campground and the regulation adopted by the town concerning the opening.

* The next scheduled meeting is May 21.

Planning Board Approves Essex Commons and East Coast Outdoors Applications
 By Penny Williams     3-9-20 

The Planning Board met on Thursday evening, March 5, and reviewed and approved two applications.

• The first application, for Essex Commons, was a follow up on the previous lot line adjustment awarded by the board at the Feb 20 meeting for the site plan to construct a self-storage development that will consist of a total of 7 buildings, six of which will be one story cold storage units and the seventh will be a 3 story 42,000 square foot climate controlled storage building.

The board had continued this application in order for the applicant to improve the actual appearance of the three story building, change some signs and correct a parking issue that had been raised by Public Works Director Steve Brewer. It will now provide more space between the 3 story building and the first cold storage unit allowing for unloading and emergency protection. In addition the applicant has added landscaping to provide a better buffer.

Joe Coronati, Jones and Beach Engineers presented the changes that had been made. The applicant had another architect do a new rendition of the building which greatly improved its appearance.

The board approved the changes made and approved the application with conditions: Landscape Architect waived; Variance for no sprinklers in cold storage units; increased building separation; sign for parking lot; building exterior to conform to rendering provided on February 20.

• East Coast Outdoors requested a change of use from an ambulance service and daycare into a landscaping business, located at 135 Route 27. The main building will now be used mainly for  storage of products, finished goods, lumber and some fuel and chemicals.

Excel Physical Therapy will continue to utilize the left side of the building, remaining there as a rental unit. All that will be changed is the addition of 8 outside storage bays, 3 for bark mulch and 5 for stone and loam. These products will be for sale.

The board determined there would be no regional impact so they moved on for Coronati making his presentation.

It was noted that the applicant had received a Variance for the outside bays that will be situated very close to the edge of the property line but will be on the paved parking lot surface. The parking lot is pre-existing so this works. Snow storage will be along the edge of the pavement and on the large lawn area that formerly was a playground. The board asked that these details be put on the site plan.

The drainage is sufficient to satisfy the board and the fuel that would be stored would not exceed five gallon cans for the equipment that will be kept outside.

Excel Physical Therapy has typical hours of operation, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and East Coast would be open days from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. and 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. on weekends.  There will be no other improvements or changes to the site except for removing signage that no longer belongs there. Deliveries would not happen before 7 a.m.

Brad Reed, Board member who had stepped down from the board for this hearing said he represented the Raymond Baptist Church which wanted the board to know they support this proposal.

The board stated as special conditions, to the proposed plan, any changes to the proposed plan would trigger a site plan review and the board requested that best practices for erosion control be used at the site. The board approved the request unanimously.

• Christina McCarthy, Planning Board Administrative Assistant, announced she has accepted the position of Raymond Town Clerk/Tax Collector but that she will help transition whomever comes in to replace her.


Planning Board Denies One Application and Continues Two
By Penny Williams   2-20-20

The Raymond Planning Board dealt with three applications, denying one and continuing two, to Thursday evening, February 20.

Alden Beauchemin submitted a waiver request from the Site Plan Review requirement on behalf of Jodi Grant from Grants' Towing for property located at 236 Route 27.
   The plan is to expand the garage that has existed there for many years. Grant wants to add on to the garage space to improve his business. He was told that all he needed was a building permit and he could get that just by filling out the application. Then there was a change of Building Inspectors and he was told he would have to submit an application to waive the site plan application since it was just expanding his existing business.  Beauchemin said they were there with the waiver request and he indicated there will be no change in the site that will impact the neighborhood. He noted that when a concern was raised over drainage he had delivered a construction plan that included drainage.

Since the expanded building would have a larger roof and therefore increased run-off, a full drainage evaluation was done with plans for a drip line and infiltration trench along the drip edge of the building on both sides to address this.

Nothing was submitted to DuBois and King Consulting firm but Public Works Director Steve Brewer expressed concerns in a letter to the board. He indicated that an original agreement on the property was never executed so it is impossible to know what exactly was approved. He also raised concerns over the new building covering the well. The new building will have two bays when provisions for only one are in place. Brewer raised concerns about the bays having floor drains if vehicles were to be stored inside as well as a holding tank. Without a site plan review, Brewer felt there were too many unknowns.

The board also had a letter from Jeff Adler of DuBois and King, who is not in favor of approving the request for the waiver from the site plan.

Beauchemin said the waiver request, if granted, wouldn't be harmful or detrimental to the public and that the new building doesn't expand the current impervious surface and where there are new areas the drip edge drains are in place. Grant wants to enlarge the building so he can keep his wrecker inside which would be a benefit to the neighborhood as well as for him.

 Greg Bemis, of Bemis Construction, indicated that the well inside the building is addressed by providing direct access through a door to it and with a berm around it.

The foundation already exists, the setbacks are met, there is access to the well but Glenn Coppelman, the Circuit Rider Planner assisting the board,  still felt an amended site plan would be needed.

The board was concerned because the location is within the radius of the Town wells and the current MS4 requirements need an approved plan that meets town and state regulations. The board felt the drainage needs to be reviewed.

After more discussion and member Gretchen Gott saying she would like a site walk, the board told Beauchmin that an amended site plan would need to be filed and the board voted to deny the waiver request for the site plan review.

In other business:

  • Joseph Coronati, Jones and Beach Engineers,  presented a lot line adjustment application between two lots that accompanied a site plan application for the construction of a self-storage development that would consist of 7 buildings, one of which would be 3 stories, 42,000 square feet of climate controlled storage space and 6 single story cold storage buildings located in Essex Commons.

Coronati said the roadway has been named Silver Fox Drive and the proposed storage construction units will take up two and a half of the three remaining lots at the commons. One of the lots is 2 plus acres and the other 3.4 acres. The lot line adjustment was unanimously approved by the board but the board members had some issues with the design and look of the climate controlled storage building.

The proposed plan Variance has been approved by the Zoning Board of Adjustment  allowing 24-feet between the single story buildings and the 36-feet for the paved aisle way between the 3 story building and the first single story building. The plan also received a Variance to allow no sprinklers in the cold storage buildings.
   The board determined the plan has no Regional Impact. However, there was a lengthy discussion about providing adequate buffering. Coronati requested a waiver from having a landscape architect and this was granted. But the board raised concerns about the proposed metal building and its appearance. They wanted an improved design since this building would be the first thing people see as they exit off Route 101 and enter Raymond.

There were some concerns raised over the fact that customers would be able to access their storage units any time of day or night and the board wanted the gate not to be opened after the close of business at 10 p.m. It is standard practice for customers to have a code to unlock the gate should they need to access their storage until outside of standard operating hours. They didn't agree to keep the gate totally locked after 10 p.m.

The board continued the proposed plan with special conditions to be approved at the later time to include no outside storage and that the board must approve of the final building design and signage as well as additional landscaping for the climate controlled storage building. The board voted to continue the proposed plan to the next meeting, March 5, to review the updated building design.

  • The board voted to recommend the Board of Selectmen allow the building permit for Miendl Road.

  • Chair Jonathan Wood introduced  Paul Lynne who was sitting in at the meeting as being interested in becoming a Planning Board alternate.

  • The board decided that if at 9:45 p.m. the meeting appears to need to continue past 10 p.m., they will stop and take a vote on whether to continue or not. They also discussed meetings being cancelled if schools cancel for weather and decided more discussion was needed on this.

  • The board continued a change of use application submitted by East Coast Outdoors to the March 5 meeting. The plan is to change the current use of an ambulance service and daycare into a landscaping business, Warehouse Establishment, located at 135 Route 27.



Planning Board Approves Scribner Road Mega-X and Chester Rd Commercial Retail Applications, and Continued East Coast Oudoors Application
By Penny Williams    1-6-20

The Raymond Planning Board approved two applications and continued another at their Thursday evening meeting on Jan. 2, 2020.

Chair Jonathan Wood said one application had been omitted from the agenda. He read the application information into the record.

 Application 2019-015 is a change of use application sought by East Coast Outdoors. The applicant wishes to change the current use of the property located at 135 Route 27 from an ambulance service and child care business to a Landscaping business with a warehouse building for storage of material.  This change of use requires review by the Planning Board.

The board accepted the applicant's request for a continuance of the hearing to the board's Feb. 6, meeting and approved the continuance. 

The board then took up application 2019-011,  a subdivision application for the purpose of a two-lot subdivision. One lot comprising 5.234 acres with frontage on Old Manchester and Scribner Roads and a larger lot comprising 33.876 acres with frontage along proposed roads associated with an accompanying site plan review application entitled Mega-X, which proposes constructing a gasoline station and convenience center that will include a retail motor fuel outlet, convenience store, donut shop and quick serve restaurant. There is also an application for a Conditional Use Permit, as this development will impact Groundwater Protection Zone. The property is located at the corners of Old Manchester and Scribner Roads.

Wood reminded the board the subdivision has already been approved at the previous hearing and the board had heard and approved the gasoline equipment safety and protection and spill prevention information at the same time.

The site plan has been before the Technical Review Committee (TRC) and Public Works Director Steve Brewer had sent the board a memorandum recommending approval of the application with conditions in two areas.

The first area concerns the underground tanks and are three conditions here:
* A complete list be provided for review
* The Town be added as contact
* The DEF tank be triple walled

The second area concerned Traffic and there are two conditions:
* A R 38 (right turn lane) Sign be  erected at Scribner Road entrance
* Seam paving on Old Manchester Road be reclaimed and specific road limits be provided as part of the street opening

Doug McGuire, Dubay Group, representing the applicant said they had accepted and agreed to all except the triple walled DEF tank. He went into detail about t saying he had misspoken about the triple wall aspect and in fact what Brewer sought was the DEF tank be consistent with all the other tanks and they would all be double walled. As such he requested this specific condition be corrected to specify double walled and the board agreed.

The board then went through the Conditional Use Permit and approved it unanimously since both TRC and Town Engineer firm DuBois & King had approved it.

The board took up the two waivers McGuire sought. One was for relief from the required site plan scale and the second was for relief from the required 88 parking spaces where the site plan provides 67. Member Gretchen Gott stated she feels the number proposed is insufficient but the board approved both waivers.

There was a discussion about snow storage and in the end McGuire agreed to use the stipulated snow storage area near the intersection of Old Manchester and Scribner as pushed snow not a pile of snow and agreed to add some more snow storage area in the adjacent landscaped area. There is a note on the plan that if the snow gets too much for available storage it will be trucked off site. It was also confirmed that the snow storage areas would be kept at the required 20-feet from any access, driveway or intersection.

The board asked for public comment and there was none and the questions the board had were answered and they board went through the conditions of approval process.

The special conditions for this application include:
* The Town being added on the contact list
* A R 38 sign be installed at entrance of Scriber Road
* Seam paving on Old Manchester be reclaimed and a specified area set before road opening
* A Training Log for employees be available for review
* Snow storage reduced at Scriber area and all snow storage comply with 20-foot from access, driveways or streets and an additional area added
*  DEF Tank will be double walled and consistent with all tanks
* a sign with state law regarding no idling at the truck parking area

The board voted unanimously to approve this application.

The board then took up application 2019-014 that is a site plan application for the purpose of constructing a 6,000-square foot single story commercial retail building with an 1,800- square foot mezzanine for a total of a 7,800-square foot building located at 28a Chester Road.

George Chadwick, Bedford Design, presented this for John Kelleher who plans to have a Kelleher Kitchens retail showroom and design office in half of the building space with space for two other retail establishments of a similar nature in the remainder of the building.

The showroom would be in the front of the building with three bays in the back. It would have a driveway entrance off of Route 102 that will be named Kelleher Way and there is adequate room for tractor trailer trucks or emergency vehicles to turn around behind the building. All required state and DOT permits are in hand and there would be municipal water and septic onsite and the development would not touch the wetlands at the back of the lot.

This will be a low volume business, open five days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and possibly upon occasion an appointment on a weekend. Primarily it will be box truck traffic not tractor trailers but there might be one larger truck once a day at most.

The board went through the regional impact process and determined this application would have no regional impact.

In response to questions Chadwick said they plan 20 parking spaces after doing a minimal traffic study using the ITE 180 and determining that the trips in and out at rush hour times would be well under the standards.

The board went through the Conditional Use Process where it was determined this is a permitted use but the impervious surface lot coverage amounts to 15.4 percent where only 15 percent is allowed so the CUP is required.  The board approved the CUP.

There was a question about the buffer between the lot and the residential area but Chadwick said they have 20-feet of dense planting and a stockade fence which satisfied the  board. The drainage was described and approved as was the lighting which would only have a few pole lights and some security lights on the building.

The Post Office had been contacted at the request of the TRC and Chadwick said they had agreed to add a couple of mailboxes beside existing mailboxes. He also said the propane tank is expected to be underground but bollards would be placed there either way.

There was only one public comment from a resident on Mark Lane who was concerned about traffic emerging from the site but was satisfied once she learned the sight line both ways was more than adequate.

The board went through the conditions of approval noting the waiver from the required plan scale was approved and if there would be any expansion of parking relating to the other businesses that would locate in the building they would need to come back before the board and bollards would be at the propane site.

The board unanimously approved the application.


NH RSA 675:3 gives the Planning Board the authority to submit an ordinance or zoning amendment to the voters.

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