2007-04-26 / News

Lavallee appeal denied, adult day-care approved

By Sam Bari

The Zoning Board of Review sitting as the Planning Board of Appeal at Tuesday night's meeting, voted 5-0 to deny the appeal of Roger and Maryjane Lavallee. The appeal concerned the Planning Commission's decision to approve the application of Evelyn F. Furtado on Oct. 11, 2006. The Furtado application for a two-lot subdivision on Luther Street, with waivers for a private roadway was contested by the Lavallees in an appeal filed Nov. 8, 2006.

Jamestown attorney James Donnelly represented the Lavallees, while attorney Ken Littman, also of Jamestown, represented Furtado.

Zoning Board Chairman Thomas Ginnerty said that the board can only reverse a decision of the Planning Commission if an obvious legal or procedural error has taken place. He continued to say that in his opinion neither occurred nor was an infraction proven to the satisfaction of the board in the Lavallee appeal. Although correspondence from three abutting neighbors that included Barbara and John Reid, Rose Williams of 135 Longfellow Rd., and Ian Dodge of 143 Longfellow Rd., opposed the approval of the Furtado application, the opinion of the board was not swayed.

In other business, the Charles and Gail Sheahan application to construct an adult day-care center at 49 North Main Rd. was approved by a unanimous 5-0 decision of the board. However, the plan was approved with stipulations. The twobuilding plan will replace an existing house on the property using the same footprint. The primary structure will house the offices of Consistent Care, which is currently located on Clinton Avenue, as well as the adult day-care center. The second structure will house offices and two apartments that cannot install kitchens without further approval from the zoning board. Additionally, the buildings must be constructed using wooden shingles, as opposed to cheaper vinyl siding which was in the original plan.

When the Sheahans presented their application at the Feb. 27 zoning board meeting, they were not represented by counsel and did not bring expert witnesses to help present their application. When Tom Diprete, a Cranston attorney representing abutters to the Sheahan property asked questions about the plans, Charles Sheehan was unable to give answers that satisfied the board members.

Chairman Ginnerty, as well as new Town Solicitor Wyatt A. Brochu, suggested that the Sheahans request a continuance so they could bring expert witnesses to respond to technical questions about their plans for construction, which they did.

The Sheahans came to the Tuesday night meeting of the board armed with Attorney John Harrington of Warwick, Muhamed Freij, a Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management engineer, and Daniel Hassan, an expert witness specializing in senior care and services. After extensive questioning and in-depth discussions among board members, Vice Chairman Don Wineberg wrote a motion for approval of the Sheahan application which passed by a unanimous decision.

The application of John J. Perrotti to construct a three-bedroom home with a two-car attached garage and impervious driveway on a 14,400 square foot lot on Ship Street was denied by a vote of 3-2. Perrotti was represented by Wakefield Attorney Margaret Hogan. Several abutting neighbors opposed the application, mostly because of drainage issues that they considered to be inadequately addressed. Two of the voting board members agreed and the application was denied.

An application by J. Patrick McIntyre for the board to reapprove a request for variance that had expired was approved by a vote of 4-1.

The Mark Baker and Elizabeth Kneib appeal of a building permit was granted a continuance to the May meeting of the board.

The Mark Brasil request for variance, as well as the Eastern Resorts application were also granted continuances until the May meeting of the board.

The Allan and Nancy Randall request for a special use permit, as well as the Beth Smith request for a variance and special use permit were granted continuances until the June zoning board meeting.

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