Lake George Park Commission
August 26, 2008
Hague Town Hall
Presiding:Bruce E. Young, Chair Commission Members Present: Thomas K. Conerty, John A. Pettica, Thomas J. Morhouse, Kenneth W. Parker, Thomas W. Hall, David G. Floyd, Joe Stanek
Commission Members Absent: John C. McDonald, James T. Kneeshaw
Commission Staff Present: Michael P. White, Executive Director, Lt. Thomas J. Caifa, Director of Law Enforcement, Molly Gallagher, Environmental Analyst II, Keith G. Fish, Operation’s Director, Roger R. Smith, Conservation Operation’s Supervisor II Michelle D. Way, Keyboard Specialist I Commission Counsel Present: Martin Auffredou
Others Present:Buzz Lamb, Carolyn Babinsky, Sandra Coffin, Bob Condit. Bill Morgan, Nancy Kalchele, Jill O’Sullivan, Bonnie Colomb, Dennie Lynch, Francis Sause, David Colomb, Mary Alice Leary, Gary Hobbs, Donald Hart, Tony Reale, Peter Bauer, Mike & Arlene Bruder, Elizabeth Coates, Anne Marie Giardarelli, Albima Masiero, Carole Wentz
Item #1 - Introductions, Roll Call, Minutes of Previous Meeting: Bruce E. Young
The 368th meeting of the Lake George Park Commission was called to order by Chairman Young at 10:10 a.m. and the roll was taken.
Chairman Young took a moment to introduce two of the newest Commission members, Mr. David Floyd of Huletts Landing and Mr. Joe Stanek of Diamond Point.
Chairman Young said that the minutes of the previous meeting were distributed in advance of this meeting to Commission members for their review. He asked if there were any corrections or submissions. There were none.
On the motion of Thomas Conerty, seconded by Kenneth Parker, the minutes of the previous meeting were approved as submitted.
Note: Joe Stanek and Dave Floyd abstained from voting due to the fact that they were not present at the previous meeting.
Item #2 — Fiscal Actions Report for July 2008: Peggy Stevens
Chairman Young said that the Fiscal Actions Report for July 2008 was submitted to the members for their review. He asked if any members had questions on the report. There were none.
On the motion of Thomas Conerty, seconded by Thomas Morhouse, all members present voting affirmatively, the July 2008 Fiscal Actions Report was approved as submitted.
Item #3 — Project Review — Public Comments on Pending Applications and Project Review Resolutions: Molly Gallagher
Molly Gallagher read a prepared statement regarding the Project Review Procedures (attached).
Resolution 2008-43 — Project Review Actions Report
Thomas Morhouse read and moved to approve Resolution 2008-43 which was seconded by Kenneth Parker, all members present voting affirmatively.
WHEREAS the Commission has received and reviewed the Project Review Actions Report prepared by staff and dated August 2, 2008, and
WHEREAS the Project Review Committee recommends acceptance of this month’s Project Review Report.
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Commission directs that the Project Review Report be incorporated in full in the minutes of the full Commission meeting.
Wharf Modification Submitted by William Morgan, Town of Hague, County of Warren
Molly Gallagher introduced the project. She said that Mr. Morgan would like to install a boat house on an existing wharf and remove one of his piers.
Bob Condit spoke on behalf of William Morgan. He explained the project and said that he would be available to answer questions anyone might have on the project.
Gary Hobbs of Poklemba & Hobbs spoke on behalf of an adjacent neighbor, Norman Levy, who objects to this project.
Mr. Hobbs spoke about the dock structure being previously moved from a southern location. He also noted that Mr. Levy is an adjacent dock owner with a right of way who has great difficulty backing in, backing out and turning his boat with the location of the current docking structure.
Thomas Morhouse asked about the distance between Mr. Levy’s dock and Mr. Morgan’s dock.
Mr. Hobbs said that he has not been to the site in quite a while and he has not measured the distance between the two docks.
Ken Parker spoke with Mr. Hobbs regarding the location of the Levy dock.
Mr. Condit said that he would be guessing, but thinks that there is approximately 38 ft. between the docks in question.
A discussion followed regarding the reasoning behind removing the southern pier rather than the northern pier.
Thomas Morhouse said that he does not believe that there are any visual impacts.
Ken Parker said that he agrees with Thomas Morhouse based on his visit to the site. He said that he would vote in favor with what Mr. Morgan would like to do.
Thomas Hall said that he does not believe there are any visual impacts. He does believe that changing the orientation of Mr. Levy’s dock structure would help to resolve the issues.
Dave Floyd said that navigation wise he does not see any problems and since Mr. Morgan’s sun deck is going to be open he does not see any visual impacts either. He said that he would vote for approval.
John Pettica said that he would vote for approval based on what his fellow Commissioner’s said.
Thomas Conerty said that he would vote for approval.
Chairman Young spoke about the issue as to whether a variance is required. (Note: the pre-existing, legal dock complex is being reduced. However, the resulting number of piers would exceed current standards.) The boathouse would modify a non-conforming dock complex but would not in itself exceed the 40' maximum wharf width or offshore extension.
It is the recommendation of the staff at the Lake George Park Commission that a variance not be required based on the fact that Mr. Morgan would be able to have a boat house the same size. By it’s approval of the current application, the Commission would be accepting this interpretation, he said.
Thomas Morhouse read and moved to approve Resolution 2008-44 which was seconded by Thomas Conerty and all Commission members voted affirmatively.
WHEREAS the applicant has applied for a permit to remove an existing crib supported pier and construct an open-sided boatcover/sundeck; and
WHEREAS the Lake George Park Commission has reviewed the application, supporting documents, comments received and other information which appears in the record; and
WHEREAS the Commission has made a determination pursuant to 6NYCRR 645-3.6 and the State Environmental Quality Review Act 6NYCRR 617.5 that the project is a Type II action and does not require further review of potential environmental impacts pursuant to this act; and
WHEREAS the action is considered to be a Minor project pursuant to 6NYCRR 645-5.3 and public notice has been published and distributed; and
WHEREAS the Commission finds that the application complies with regulatory limits and requirements; and
WHEREAS the Commission finds that the proposed project is reasonable and necessary and will not cause unreasonable, uncontrolled, or unnecessary damage to the natural resources of the state, including soils, forests, water, fish, shellfish, crustaceans and aquatic and land-related environment; and
WHEREAS the Commission finds that the project will have no adverse impact on the health, safety or welfare of the public, the environment or the resources of the Park; will not alter the essential character of the area in which it is proposed; will not lead to congestion in the Park and will not have an undue visual, cultural or audible impact on the neighborhood or the Park.
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Lake George Park Commission hereby approves the above application.
Item #4 — Wharf Construction Submitted By Hart Family, LLC: Molly Gallagher
Wharf Construction Submitted by Hart Family, LLC, Town of Lake George, County of Warren
Molly Gallagher introduced the application with a power point presentation. The presentation included the application, project timeline, pictures and original proposal documents.
Chairman Young said that the original application is not on the table today but noted that Mr. Hart does have the option to put it back on the table if he decides to go back to a hearing.
Chairman Young also said that he understands that this process is and can be emotionally important as well as financially important.
Gary Hobbs spoke on behalf of the applicant, Hart Family, LLC., and said that they have been working in conjunction with the LGPC staff to develop a plan to work with all parties involved.
Gary Hobbs spoke about many of the changes they made from the original application to the new application. He said that these changes were made to help alleviate some of the concerns that the Trinty Rock Property Owners Group have with regard to the proposed docking structure.
A discussion followed regarding the docking structure, use of a buoy system as well as the natural foliage on the property.
Jill O’Sullivan spoke on behalf of the Trinity Rock Property Owners Group (TRPOG). She spoke about the property owners deeded rights to use and access the beach and shoreline, many of the concerns that the TRPOG have and what they would like to see change or be modified.
Bonnie Colomb who is part of the TRPOG said that everyone agrees that Mr. Hart is allowed to have a dock and use his dock but they would like to see him refurbish his existing dock and possibly lengthen them and place a dock cover over what is already currently existing.
Francis Sause of the Cramer Point Motel spoke regarding many of the beach issues that have come up such as use of a buoy system for his guests, issues with the Department of Health and issues with the use of the beach. He also spoke about issues that occurred before the property was owned by Mr. Hart such as harassment issues as well as his motel being paint balled, etc.
Anne Marie Giardarelli spoke about the rules and regulations of the Park Commission and asked for clarification of the regulations in relation to boats and docks.
Thomas Morhouse said that many times Commission members get charged with the emotions and the care with the regulations which they operate under. He appealed to the audience to be respectful of all speakers and avoid emotional outbursts.
Mr. Morhouse said that, in his opinion, Mr. Hart has made the necessary changes to resolve what he was conflicted about. He said that he is torn because whatever decision that is made will probably end up in court, nevertheless, he said that he would vote to approve the application.
Ken Parker said that the Hart application is a family venture and almost everyone in the bay has a boat house structure. He said that he would vote to approve the project as presented.
Thomas Hall said that he is not quite ready to say that he would approve the application. He said that his opinion is that the modified application still represents a conflict as expressed by some neighbors and their attorney.
Mr. Hall said that he is looking for something that would represent less conflict with the neighborhood. He said that he is not in favor of the project at this time.
Dave Floyd said that he has had an interesting past two weeks - he has read the entire file and believes that there is a little more room for compromise. He said that he cannot approve the application at this time.
John Pettica said that he still has issues with the project which will probably never be fully resolved. He said that he is not in favor of this project.
Thomas Conerty said that Mr. Hart has the right to build a boat house and he is in support of the application as presented.
Joe Stanek said that he believes that there are safety concerns and he would be inclined to deny the application at this time.
Chairman Young said that he also believes that Mr. Hart has a right to have a boathouse but there is still a conflict in interest with regard to safety.
Chairman Young said that he also believes that swimmers have a safety liability as well. He said that when he was a child he was told to watch his head when he swam across the lake.
Thomas Morhouse read and moved to table the application which was seconded by Thomas Hall and all Commission members present voted affirmatively.
Item #5 — Law Enforcement Committee Report: Thomas K. Conerty
Thomas Conerty said that a Law Enforcement meeting did occur and he called upon Lt. Caifa to speak.
Lieutenant Caifa said that the Law Enforcement meeting started at 9:05 a.m. where they moved immediately into a lengthy Executive Session. He said that they returned to regular session at 9:55 a.m. and immediately adjourned the meeting.
Thomas Conerty read and moved to approve Resolution 2008-46 which was seconded by John Pettica and all Commission members present voted affirmatively to approve the resolution.
WHEREAS the Law Enforcement Committee met August 26, 2008 to review matters pertaining to the Lake George Park Commission’s Marine Patrol and the Commission's Law Enforcement Program, and
WHEREAS active Law Enforcement cases and their status were reviewed in Executive Session, and
WHEREAS the Law Enforcement Committee has reported on the results of that committee meeting at this full Commission meeting, and
WHEREAS the Law Enforcement Committee recommends acceptance of this month's Law Enforcement Report.
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Commission accepts the report of the Law Enforcement Committee.
Item #6 — Public Comments
Lake George Association
The FUND for Lake George, Inc.
Lake George Waterkeeper
Chris Navitsky welcomed the new Commission members, David Floyd of Huletts Landing and Joe Stanek of Diamond Point.
Chris Navitsky spoke about an increase of algae blooms in the lake — according to Mr. Navitsky, what he has found is troublesome. He said that 6" of non-toxic algae has been washing up on beaches. He added that in the Town of Bolton extremely large areas of algae have been discovered.
Mr. Navitsky spoke about some of the things that can be done to prevent this algae from forming and preserve the water quality of the lake.
Lake George Watershed Conference
Item #7 — Adjournment
There being no further business, on the motion of Kenneth Parker, seconded by Thomas Morhouse the meeting was adjourned at 12:25 p.m.
Michelle D. Way
Secretary’s Note: The next Commission meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, September 30, 2008, 10:00 a.m. at the Canoe Island Lodge, Diamond Point, NY.