OFFICE OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION
Town of Halifax, Vermont
PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
January 8, 2019
Call to Order
The meeting was called to order at 7:02 p.m. Planning Commission members Turner Lewis, Kaitlin Stone, and Alice Aldrich were present; Jason Ashcroft was absent. Bill Pusey arrived just as the meeting was adjourning. Stephan Chait and Robbin Gabriel were also present.
Changes and Additions to Agenda
Approval of Previous Meeting Minutes
The October 9th meeting and hearing minutes could not be approved due to various absences from those sessions.
Alice Aldrich made a motion to approve the 11/13/18 regular meeting minutes as written. Kaitlin Stone seconded the motion, which passed, 3-0.
While reviewing the November 13th minutes, Aldrich asked what had happened regarding the Thurber Road question. Stone, who attended the Selectboard meeting where that topic was discussed (see https://halifaxvt.com/selectboard/meeting-minutes/2018-11-20-selectboard-regular-meeting-minutes-draft/), said the Selectboard chose to table the issue until spring, when site visits would be possible. Meanwhile, they requested residents on the Roberts property to utilize the eastern end of Thurber, as they had done in the past.
Turner Lewis advised that he, Aldrich, and Stephan Chait had attended the Selectboard’s public hearing on the revised Town Plan, and had advocated for the formation of a Conservation Commission. Lewis said he would like the Planning Commission to make a formal proposal that a Conservation Commission would be wise for Halifax residents. The Selectboard approves creation of committees, said Lewis, and if that were done we could then advertise for volunteers to serve. How many members would the committee have?, asked Stone. Lewis thought three, including one member of the Planning Commission. Chait said it would be good to get a mix of people, from different parts of town. Lewis also suggested a Halifax committee might coordinate with adjacent towns; Marlboro has a conservation commission which works with neighboring towns.
Commissioners reviewed a draft of the Planning Commission/ZBA report for the Halifax Annual Report. Aldrich made a motion to approve the PC/ZBA report as written. Stone seconded the motion, which passed, 3-0.
Lewis advised that he would be out of the country in February; he will notify Bill Pusey and Pusey will chair the February 12th meeting.
Chait asked whether the Board would make a formal motion on the conservation commission subject. Aldrich made a motion to request the Selectboard to approve forming a Halifax Conservation Commission. Lewis seconded the motion, which passed, 3-0.
Aldrich, referring to the revised Town Plan, had a question on median and family income in Halifax. The text states that according to 2016 estimates those figures are higher than all surrounding towns except Marlboro, and are also higher than county and State figures. Is that going to increase the Town’s State Education Tax?, asked Aldrich. After some discussion, there was a general consensus that the State would not base the Town’s education tax on this information, but all agreed that Aldrich should call WRC’s John Bennett with that question.
Hearing of Visitors
Lewis made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 7:17 p.m. Stone seconded the motion, which passed, 3-0.
Planning Commission Interim Secretary