Hearing extended on subdivision law changes

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BUCKFIELD – The Planning Board voted Tuesday night to table its hearing on amendments to the town’s subdivision ordinance until it can consider some options offered by a resident at the meeting.

Of particular concern was the portion regulating who controls open space in a subdivision. The ordinance requires that open space be dedicated upon approval of the project. It also requires that it be used for agriculture, noncommercial recreation, forestry or conservation and be clearly defined in the development plan. The ordinance also prevents “land development” within the open space without approval from the Planning Board.

The amendment under consideration calls for open space to be controlled by a development’s homeowners’ association, which is also responsible for maintaining roads and the drainage system. The developer, according to the proposed amendment, would be responsible for the open space until a homeowners’ association is established.

Resident Wes Ackley objected to the wording that says the development rights for the open space land are held by the homeowners’ association. He said preference should be given to any nonprofit organization that manages conservation-type land. He said if this fails then the town should control the space.

As a third choice the homeowners’ association should then have control over the open space.

The board agreed to further review Ackley’s concerns.


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