LIVERMORE FALLS — Planning Board members voted Wednesday to approve a site-plan review application  for a pet crematory, Journeys End, at 18 Brookside Ave.

Neighbors submitted a petition opposing the business but there is no criteria in the town’s Site Plan Review Ordinance to prohibit it.

The board also voted to have Redneck Fun Run applicant, Matthew Weeks of Greene, submit a new site-plan review application for  a proposed mud run operation on Park Street/Route 133. The application would need to include approvals from state transportation and environmental protection agencies on road openings and wetlands, respectively.

He would also be required to show proof of legal interest such as a purchase and sales agreement, in the 221 acres Weeks proposes to buy if the board approved the plan for his proposed business. The board wants specific details on what he would plan to do and a specific time frame.

Board Chairwoman Mellette Pepin said she liked the idea presented by another board member to take the project in phases before voting.

Essentially that application that went to hearing on the mud run project was deemed incomplete by the board and Weeks will have to start over.

Residents and neighbors submitted a petition against this as well.

Votes from Planning Board members followed a public hearing on each application.

During the first hearing Journeys End applicant Michelle Pomeroy said the business would be a daytime only operation from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The machine for the business she and Matthew Perkins would run is already in operation in Norway and licensed by the state Department of Environmental Protection, she said. Perkins said he would be trained and state licensed to run the machine.

The maximum weight of a carcass of a dog to be cremated would be 200 pounds, Pomeroy said. There would be no storage of animal bodies, she said.

The couple would use their own vehicles to transport dead animals to their property to eliminate any traffic issues. Pomeroy also said they would have to keep documentation on operation of the incinerator for state purposes and have yearly inspections.

The machine would also have to be re-licensed by the state if relocated for the new business, Code Enforcement Officer James Butler Jr. said.

Tarek Nadeau, a neighbor of the property, presented a petition with 26 signatures opposing the business. He cited noise, emissions, unpleasant odors, affect on quality of life and lower property values among other issues with the business proposed for the residential area.

Nadeau also said the town ordinance was not followed because letters were sent by regular mail to abutters instead of by certified mail.

Butler said he followed past practice. He said the letters should have been sent certified mail. The board could continue with the hearing and application and will note that there was an error in the process, he said. Nadeau could file an appeal that would be heard by the Board of Appeals about the process, Butler said.  

During the hearing on the proposed Fun Run, residents opposing the project cited noise, fumes, dust, soil erosion and well water contamination, among other issues.

The 500 to 10,000 people projected to attend and 5,000 vehicles projected to be parked was way too many for the residential area and the 50-foot right of way to the property to handle, they said.

Planning Board members said they were concerned about the broad plan for the project and no traffic data, no road opening permit  or wetlands information provided.

Member Bruce Adams also said he did not see anything on Weeks having legal interest in the property.

“I just don’t think all the T’s are crossed,” Adams said.  

Note: This story has been modified since it was first published to reflect the correct word “crossed” used in a quote by Planning Board member Bruce Adams. It was incorrectly reported by the Sun Journal.

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