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Fish Truck Public Hearing Continued Until December

Anton Gnoch is seeking to move his fish truck to the Sherman Village Plaza.

 

No decision was made by the Woodbury Zoning Commission on Anton Gnoch's application to move his fish truck to the Sherman Village Plaza.

The November 13 Zoning Commission public hearing on Gnoch's application for a special permit was continued until the 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11, meeting, taking place at the Senior Community Center.

There was some confusion in the beginning of the public hearing due to an e-mail sent to commissioners before the public hearing took place. Zoning Commission Chairman Martin Overton said an e-mail from the land use office contained 18 questions and/or concerns from members of the public. That e-mail was sent to commissioners and then retracted by land use staff, he said.

He said the e-mail was an attempt to get the commission to act on the information without being formally convened. Woodbury First Selectman Gerald 'Jerry' Stomski said he merely asked staff to send the e-mail as an "FYI" and asked that commissioners consider the points noted in the e-mail.

"And the correct way to do that is at the meeting, not before," said Overton, "during the hearing but not before it starts."

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The Application

Gnoch said if his application is approved, he will park his truck on the first peninsula of the plaza's parking area, near Ovens of France.

"It seems that the majority of my customers think it would be a more viable, safe place with the traffic light, and more parking," he said.

Overton expressed concerns over traffic and safety.

"The last thing we want is for a little child to be running around a truck and get hit by another truck," he said.

Gnoch said that could happen in any parking lot, to which Overton replied that he doesn't want to make a traffic situation worse.

Stomski said he received a lot of phone calls from residents about the fish truck. He shared 18 comments from people on the application, including questions on the pedestrian traffic flow, the availability of parking spaces for the other businesses in the plaza and how it will impact existing businesses.

"The traffic pattern is certainly a concern," he said. "I would request the Zoning Commission ask for a site plan that addresses this."

Gnoch said the other businesses in the plaza support him and his fish truck.

"We share a tremendous amount of customers," he said.

Jaimie Cura November 16, 2012 at 05:25 PM
First Selectman Gerald 'Jerry' Stomski was kind enough to send clarification via e-mail, regarding the e-mail: "It appears that the part of the story that you misses (sic) is that it is OK to send written correspondence in prior to a public hearing, to be read allowed in public. In fact, it is encouraged that people who can't attend or make a meeting submit their comments ahead. This is not new. It happens all the time. It is a way for the public to input their comments without having to attend the meeting."
Sean M November 16, 2012 at 05:37 PM
State law requires all applications must be taken, regardless of being complete or not. If you attended the meeting you would know that had the commission gave the extra time to get the application in order. The map submitted had the wrong location, which is probably already fixed. In addition, there is a safety issue on where the truck wants to go.
Sean M November 16, 2012 at 05:43 PM
This whole issue is simple playing politics by Martin Overton and his sidekick Bob Clarke. Jerry's questions were all valid and pointed out a number of issues with the application, many of which had to do with how the process was handled. Jerry again served the town right by pointing these issues out.
Lorraine Evans November 17, 2012 at 02:46 PM
Why not let him park in the wonderful new shopping center since there is no one moving in there would not be a problem with traffic
Sean M November 17, 2012 at 03:28 PM
Zoning does not pick where people go. People have to fill out applications and come before the commission for approval or denial.

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