Bemont argues Tilton's lawsuit over aquifer protection wasn't filed in timely fashion

LACONIA — The town of Belmont has filed a motion asking Superior Court to dismiss a suit brought against its Planing Board by the town of Tilton related to protection of the aquifer that roughly parallels Rte. 140 West that is a prime source of drinking water. Tilton alleges it was not properly noticed when the Belmont board took up the subject of Casella Waste System's plan to add a solid waste transfer component to the facility it operates just off the highway. 

Tilton also alleges Belmont planners failed to consider the regional impact of such a operation when they approved Casella's plan.

The motion to dismiss filed by Belmont states that Tilton's motion is untimely because an appeal of a Planning Board decision must be made within 30 days of the decision. Belmont says Tilton filed its suit on August 27 — 31 days after the July 27 decision and seven months after a decision made on January 26.

Belmont Town Attorney Laura Morgan cited RSA 677:15 and noted that Tilton's Attorney Daniel Crean did not assent to her verbal request to dismiss.

The larger issue for representatives from Tilton and Northfield is some general anxiety, which was expressed by many residents at the N.H. Department of Environmental Services public hearing and at recent public hearing for a newly developed storm-water runoff plan and a hot-load plan, that the aquifer that all three communities use for drinking water may be compromised by Casella's operation above it.

Just recently, the Tilton-Northfield Water District asked the town of Belmont to join Tilton and Northfield and reclassify the aquifer from a "potentially valuable, stratified drift aquifer" to a GAA-rating — or "delineated wellhead protection area."

Belmont Land Use Technician Rick Ball said yesterday he reached out to the DES recently for some a GAA classification and was told that a solid waste transfer station, which is the additional process requested by Casella, is not a solid waste composting or solid waste recovery facility and would be allowed in a GAA zone.

Peter Beblowski of the DES wrote that according to New Hampshire DES rulesEnv-SW 104.54 a "transfer station means a solid waste collection, storage and transfer facility, which collects, stores and transfers solid waste, including non-recyclable waste."

Beblowski added that according to Env-Or 702.19 is a "resource recovery facility means any facility engaged in an activity beyond sorting or physical volume reduction methods to treat process solid waste into a usable secondary materials or products, including, but not limited to fuel, energy or compost."

He said a solid waste facility is a potential contamination source as defined by state law but it is not a prohibited use and doesn't "trigger the requirement for a groundwater release detection permit."

Ball also said that "Belmont ( s it related to the aquifer) is currently on an every other year inspection frequency; the GAA designation requires an inspection every three years. The "broad spectrum of investigations" (cited by Tilton-Northfield Water Commission Chair Scott Davis) are exactly what we are making now — making sure people are handling contaminants appropriately by following best management practices."

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New downtown apartment building is called Perley Canal Mill

LACONIA — Chinburg Builders, Inc. is nearing completion of the conversion of the 18,000 square foot building at Beacon Street West into 30 rental units — called Perley Canal Mill — and a model apartment is being shown to prospective tenants.
The 30 units, most on two floors, consist of four flats, five studios, and six one-bedroom and 15 two-bedroom apartments. The four flats and five studios are single story units, with four of the studios on the ground floor and the fifth along the four flats on the upper story. Four the studios are 632-square-feet while the fifth, with an entrance and foyer on the ground floor measures 778-square-feet. The four flats, with an entrance leading to staircase on the ground floor, mirror the dimensions of the studios immediately below them.
The half-dozen one bedroom units range between 703-square-feet and 2,128-square-feet. In three of the units the kitchen and living area is on the ground floor and the bedroom upstairs while the other three have an entrance and foyer on the ground floor and all the remaining space above. The two bedroom apartments are between 1,032-square-feet and 1,375-square-feet,. In 14 of the units the kitchen and living area is on the ground floor while in the remaining unit there is a bedroom on the ground floor and the rest of the apartment on the upper story.
All units have patios and some balconies. Like the condominiums the apartments feature 18-foot ceilings, oversized windows and exposed brick and beams. Residents have access to a club room, fitness center and laundry. The building overlooks the Winnipesaukee River and stands alongside the outlet of the Perley Canal while the property is bordered by the Downtown Riverwalk.
The studios and flats rent from $875 to $1,075, the one bedroom units from $995 to $1585 and the two-bedroom units from $1,445-$1,895.

Chinburg Builders began redevelopment of Beacon Street West — the old Allen-Rogers Mill — a decade ago with the conversion of two buildings along Water Street into condominiums and townhomes. The Perley Canal Mill building is situated toward the center of the property.

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Belmont supports Parent Sand & Gravel access on Wareing Rd.

BELMONT — Selectmen said Monday night that the paving of a portion of Wareing Road will be delayed until spring because of additional drainage needs.

Wareing Road connects Rte. 106 with Shaker Road and has always been a dirt road. There are two homes on the portion to be paved and with this years lack of rain, the road is wash boarded and dusty. It is posted for no thru traffic.

According to Town Planner Candace Daigle, Nutter Sand and Gravel operates gravel pits on either side of Wareing Roard but is planning to sell the smaller gravel pit on the north to Parent Sand and Gravel, which currently operates on Shaker Road.

She said that Parent's owner, Adam Towne, wants to link the back of his current pit on Shaker Road to the back of what will be his new pit on Wareing Road and build his scales near the Wareing Road exit and be able to access Rte. 106 from there.

Daigle said the town supports putting Parent Sand and Gravel's access on Waring Road so its trucks can directly access Rte. 106 because the town is attempting to reduce the amount of heavy trucks that travel through the newly reconstructed village area which is bisected by Rte. 140. If Towne's has an entrance to Rte. 106 from Wareing Road, he won't need to use Rte. 140 to access Rte. 106.

As for Nutter, Daigle said their access and scales to Rte. 106 is on South Road and she doesn't see any reason it would use Wareing Road because it's scales are on the opposite side of its pits.

She said after the paving, Wareing Road will continue to be posted as "no through traffic" because Parent Sand and Gravel are operating on Wareing Road, not using it as a through road.

Right now, she said the road is unable to handle the weight load of sand and gravel trucks but once it is upgraded, Parent will be able to use it.

Daigle said the N.H. Department of Transportation will have to okay Parent's proposal and she had given his site and operation plans that will go before the Belmont Planning Board in October to the agency.

"This is a cooperative review as far as the town is concerned," Daigle said.
Daigle also said that Parent's site plan public hearing was scheduled for next week's Planning Board but it has been postponed until the October 26 meeting.

 

CUTLINE: About half-way down in this picture of Wareing Road is an intersection used by Nutter Sand and Gravel to access two pits. Once Parent Sand and Gravel takes over the pit on the left, it will use that exit to access Wareing Road and then Rte. 106. (Laconia Daily Sun photo/Gail Ober)

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