Village has new plan,now it needs new laws

CHATHAM–The Village Board approved a new, updated Comprehensive Plan at its meeting last week. The vote came after a public hearing on the draft just before the July 9 meeting of the board.

At the meeting the board also created a Zoning Revision Committee to review the village zoning law. The committee’s job is to make sure local regulations will further the goals of the new plan.

“I lay out a schedule of six to eight months to finalize the zoning issues,” Matt Rogers, the consultant who helped the Comprehensive Plan Update Committee with its work on the plan, said at the July 9 meeting. Mr. Rogers gave the Village Board a written proposal to work with the Zoning Revision Committee. The board will review his proposal and respond in time for the board’s August meeting.

Comprehensive Plan Update Committee members Lael Locke, Joanne DelRossi, Melissa Sarris and Leo Ponter all were appointed to the Revision Committee. The village is advertising for three more members for the committee.

The village currently has a moratorium on commercial construction while the zoning laws are reviewed. Mr. Rogers said the board could look at the pressing items before the moratorium expires this fall. The updated plan discusses evaluating the existing Historic Overlay District, which would mean some zoning changes.

“We really need to fast track that,” Trustee Mike Wollowitz said of the zoning law review.

“What comes to you guys will be a draft policy,” said Mr. Rogers of the zoning law changes the committee might recommend. Only the Village Board can make changes in the zoning ordinance.

A copy of the new plan will be available on at the Village Clerk’s office and online at the village website www.villageofchatham.org.

Also at the meeting:

  • The board was asked to sign a resolution from the Citizens Climate Change Lobby acknowledging climate change and urging the state and federal government to do something about it. The board was also asked to pass resolution to be a Climate Smart Community that would find green resources for the village. The board plans to review both resolutions and will discuss them again in August
  • Accepted the resignation from the village crossing guard in charge of the crosswalk on Woodbridge Avenue, helping students cross at the before and after school. The board will be advertising for the position.

The next village meeting is Thursday, August 13 at 7 p.m. in the Tracy Memorial Village Hall.

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