CHINA — Planning Board members on Tuesday unanimously approved a revised subdivision plan on Pleasant View Ridge Road that will add more than 20 acres.

Stephen Haworth’s revised plan involves adding a 21.9-acre lot to the subdivision. Five neighbors attended a public hearing on the plan and asked questions but did not raise major objections.

The land can be further subdivided by a new owner, if approved by the Planning Board and a 65-foot right-of-way will be established at the property’s south end to provide enough room for a private road to be built connecting to Pleasant View Ridge Road.

Code Enforcement Officer Scott Pierz said board members cannot sign the revised plan until Haworth’s surveyor, Scott Campbell, sends them a letter stating that all the boundary pins have been set. If the letter is received soon, Pierz said board members could sign the plan individually, instead of waiting until their next meeting on Dec. 13.

Board members also discussed plans for special town votes in June.

In response to a petition, a question will be put on the June ballot asking voters to repeal China’s Shoreland Septic System Compliance Ordinance. Resident Frederic Hayden spearheaded the petition drive to repeal the ordinance.

Board Chairman Ronald Breton wants planners to develop an alternative ordinance to submit at the same time.

The septic system ordinance, prepared by an earlier Planning Board, requires property owners within 250 feet of water bodies to prove they have septic systems meeting codes or to have their systems inspected by the end of 2014 and every four years after that.

If the ordinance is repealed without a replacement, then “we have absolutely nothing” to regulate septic systems near lakes and streams, Breton said.

Believing a majority of China residents support protecting water quality, he wants the board to prepare a new ordinance that would meet major objections to the current one without ending the septic system compliance program entirely.

According to selectmen and Planning Board members, petition signers say the current ordinance involves a costly inspection program and they think the rules should cover all systems within lake watersheds, not just those in shoreland areas.

Planning Board members have already prepared two more ordinance changes and they voted unanimously Tuesday to ask selectmen to put those proposals on the June ballot as well.

One question would ask voters to approve amended regulations on home occupations. The other question would ask them to approve an amended definition of “home occupation” within China’s Land Development Code.

Pierz, new chairman of the Comprehensive Plan Implementation Committee, said the panel might also produce an amended ordinance governing commercial development in time for the June vote.

If so, that amendment would not include controversial earlier proposals from the committee such as architectural standards, historic district regulations and changes to land-use ordinance sections, Pierz said.

At the Dec. 13 Planning Board meeting, board members have scheduled informational presentations by LaMarr Clannon of the Maine Non-Point Education for Municipal Officials program and Alexander Wong of the Maine Rural Water Association on low impact development. They also expect a presentation on the revised plan for the new access road to China Primary School and a preliminary discussion of next year’s Planning Board budget.


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