Two Wiscasset Road residents strongly supported the addition of a new plumber to the neighborhood. Chuck Cunningham and Victoria Runyon spoke at the Oct. 17 Boothbay Planning Board meeting in support of Yereance Properties, LLC's request for a change of use for a 16-foot by 28-foot storage facility. Scott Yereance, who co-owns the business with wife Katie Yereance, spoke about plans to change the building’s designation from storage to a service building.
The board unanimously approved his request. Yereance also indicated future plans to build a 60-foot by 80-foot building for his materials, operating and plumbing company. His neighbors and planning board members saw sketches for his new building. Yereance wanted board approval for the use change on the current structure before applying for the new building. Code Enforcement Officer Jason Lorrain expects Yereance to apply in the coming weeks.
Both Runyon and Cunningham abut the 319 Wiscasset Road property. They expressed support for the proposal. “I have met with them, and see no reason why you couldn’t approve both plans tonight. I look forward to having him as a neighbor, and it will be good having a plumber as a neighbor,” Cunningham said.
Runyon echoed Cunningham’s sentiments. “I too have seen the plans. The building will actually be closer to my property and I would also like to welcome to the neighborhood. Yes, I agree it will be nice having a plumber in the neighborhood,” she said.
In other action, the board initially approve proposed change of use at 73 Corey Lane, but is currently rethinking the decision. Thomas Witt sought a change of use for the property owned by the Witt Family Trust. Witt requested a change of use from the current boat repair and wood shop to a rental unit. Witt told board members his prospective tenant Mike Bartles moved to Boothbay five and half years ago to work as a sailmaker for Nathaniel Wilson. But the property is located in a residential zone which doesn’t allow manufacturing. And sailmaking is how the tenant wants to use the rental space.
Bartles, 31, is from Farmington, Connecticut and is married to Harley Bartles, 28. Mike Bartles is ready to operate his own sailmaking business. He struck a deal to rent Witt’s vacant building.
Witt bought the property over four years ago from Bigelow Laboratories. He used the Corey Lane building for storing his boats and other work-related items. He has since built a new home and tried unsuccessfully to sell the property. Witt is now content to rent the vacant building.
During the application review, Witt presented a list of possible activities for the change of use. One was for maritime activities, such as sail repair, which is an allowed use. Another activity, sailmaking, isn’t allowed. Planning board members consider sailmaking a manufacturing activity which is prohibited in the residential zone.
On Oct. 18, Lorrain reported he was meeting with the applicant on seeking an alternative ruling which complied with ordinances.
The planning board will meet next at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 21 in the municipal building’s conference room.