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October 27, 2014 Board of Zoning Appeals Minutes

Jim Maciejewski, PresidentAttorney Tim Kuiper
Ken Schneider, Vice-PresidentSteve Kil
Steve Hastings 
Tom Ryan 
Paul Panczuk 

CALL TO ORDER:


Mr. Jim Maciejewski called to order the meeting of the Board of Zoning Appeals for Monday, October 27, 2014, at 7:04 p.m.

(The Pledge of Allegiance was said.)

ROLL CALL:


Roll call was taken by Susan E. Wright, Recording Secretary, with the following members present: Jim Maciejewski, Steve Hastings, Tom Ryan and Paul Panczuk. Ken Schneider was absent. Steve Kil was absent. The Board’s attorney, Tim Kuiper, was present.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:


AUGUST 25, 2014, MEETING

Mr. Maciejewski noted the minutes of August 25, 2014, were before the Board for their consideration. He asked if there were any comments or corrections. The Board members had no comments or corrections.

Mr. Maciejewski stated he would entertain a motion on the minutes of August 25, 2014. Mr. Tom Ryan made a motion to approve the minutes of the August 25, 2014, BZA meeting as submitted. Mr. Paul Panczuk seconded the motion. The motion was carried by voice vote (4/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

NEW BUSINESS:


A. HOMETOWN APPLIANCE 11130 WEST 93RD AVENUE --- DEVELOPMENTAL VARIANCE --- PUBLIC HEARING --- ALLOW TO WALL SIGNS IN ADDITION TO GROUND SIGN --- ERIK SCHNEIDER.

Mr. Maciejewski noted the first item on the agenda was request for a Developmental Variance to allow two wall signs in addition to a ground sign at Hometown Appliance, 11130 West 93rd Avenue.

Mr. Erik Schneider, Petitioner and owner of Hometown Appliance appeared before the Board seeking the Developmental Technical variance for the sign. Mr. Maciejewski called the Petitioner forward to elaborate on his request.

Mr. Schneider submitted photographs. He stated the photographs depict the sign in question. He stated this marquee sign was on the building when they took possession of the building through a lease.

Mr. Schneider submitted photographs of businesses in Town in similar situations that he surmised had to appear before the BZA for multiple signs. Mr. Schneider stated that the marquee sign is used for civic duty, (things going on in Town, i.e., deaths). He stated that the marquee sign has been on the building for as long as he has been in Town, approximately 25 years.

Mr. Schneider stated that the sign dates back to Matt’s Tap. He stated he does not intend to illuminate the sign. Mr. Schneider stated he does not want the business to look “super busy” at night. He informed the Board that the Hometown Appliance sign came from the previous location of the business at 10033 Wicker. He stated that this sign shuts off at 10:00 p.m. along with the monument sign.

Mr. Schneider stated that Hometown Appliance is a small town business. He stated he is doing his best to stay in Town and make a go of his business. Mr. Schneider stated his company is competing against big dollars and big corporations.

Mr. Schneider stated he has recently sold some appliances to the Town, earned a contract with Lake Central School Corporation, and is doing work with the Lake County courts. He stated he recently moved back to the Gates of St. John and he lives where he works.

Mr. Schneider reiterated that he is requesting a Developmental Variance that will allow him to keep the sign that has been on the building for as long as he can remember.

Mr. Maciejewski asked if, in all other respects, Mr. Schneider would be in compliance with the zoning ordinance. Mr. Schneider stated he was approved to have the Hometown Appliance sign on the building when he relocated along with the monument sign.

Mr. Maciejewski asked Mr. Schneider if he knew the approximate size of the relocated sign. Mr. Schneider stated he did not recall the size of the relocated sign. Mr. Schneider stated “Altogether we are --- we are a little bit over the 100 square foot if you include the sign at the road, the sign that we relocated and the marquee. We’re right around 120 square feet.”

Mr. Schneider stated that the relocated sign is approximately 45 square feet; he stated it was under the 50 square feet that was allotted when they opened five years ago. Mr. Schneider stated the monument sign was approximately 5x6. Mr. Schneider stated that the monument sign was existing, but he changed the wording.

Mr. Maciejewski asked Attorney Kuiper if the notices and publications were in order for a public hearing. Attorney Kuiper acknowledged that the notices and publications were in order so that a public hearing could be properly conducted tonight.

Mr. Maciejewski opened the floor for a public hearing. He called for anyone interested in addressing the Board on the Developmental Variance being sought by Hometown Appliance to step to the podium. He called for public comment. There was no public comment. Mr. Maciejewski closed the public hearing and brought the matter back before the Board.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Maciejewski stated he was not quite sure what he was being asked to vote on, and if the Developmental Variance request was related just to the panel board sign. Attorney Kuiper stated his understanding, after hearing the Petitioner, is that there are actually two requests being made. The first request is to have a combination of a ground sign and two wall signs. Attorney Kuiper stated that only two (signs) out of three are allowed. The second request is related to the signs exceeding the total square footage allowable. He stated that in a commercial zoning district 100 square feet is permissible and it sounds as if there is 120 square feet.

Mr. Maciejewski noted that the Petitioner is requesting permission to be allowed to exceed the total square footage by requesting 120 square feet. Attorney Kuiper stated he was not certain how the square footage numbers were derived other than what he gleaned from the discussion.

Mr. Maciejewski asked if the Board members had any further questions, concerns or comments. Mr. Ryan asked if the Petitioner could show any photos depicting both of the wall signs in one shot.

Mr. Schneider stated he may have some photographs on his phone, but he could not locate them. He stated that he intends to paint the building to make it more suitable, a taupe color, similar to Walgreens.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Schneider stated that the illuminated signs, on timer, turn off at 10:00 p.m. Mr. Maciejewski ascertained that the monument sign is located on the property.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Maciejewski asked to see a photo of the monument sign. Mr. Schneider could not locate a photo of the monument sign.

Mr. Maciejewski asked for an explanation of the application for a Developmental Variance. Attorney Kuiper explained that the sign does not fall under the commercial center identification sign because there are not four tenants inside of a single building.

Mr. Schneider acknowledged that the sign that was moved to the 11130 West 93rd Avenue location is approximately 45 square feet, the panel board sign is approximately 5x6, and the monument sign is 5x6. Attorney Kuiper noted the square footage of these two signs were under 100 square feet. Attorney Kuiper explained the square footage requirements for a commercial identification sign.

Mr. Panczuk stated he would not want the marquee sign to be converted into an illuminated or an LED sign in the future. Attorney Kuiper stated that the Petitioner would definitely have to reappear before the Board before this sign was changed and/or illuminated. Mr. Panczuk stated he does not want to see the marquee sign illuminated at all.

Mr. Maciejewski stated that the Board could add a stipulation to the motion that the marquee sign remain non-illuminated.

Mr. Maciejewski remarked that the monument sign would be a non-conforming monument sign or it could be allowed to be a two tenant commercial center identification sign. Attorney Kuiper recommended that the Board allow for a non-conforming commercial center identification sign for two tenants.

Mr. Panczuk stated he would support the non-conforming commercial center identification sign. Mr. Maciejewski acknowledged that this was one way to handle this matter, a non-conforming commercial center identification sign with two tenants with the sign to remain as-is.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Maciejewski asked for any further questions or comments. The Board members had no further questions or comments.

Mr. Maciejewski stated he would entertain a motion to consider the application in two parts. The first part of the motion would be to grant a declaration of the monument sign as a non-conforming commercial identification sign with two tenants and to remain as-is. The second part of the motion would be to allow the two existing signs to remain on the west face of the building with the stipulation that the marquee wall sign have no illumination.

Mr. Ryan made a motion to allow two wall signs on the west side of the building, with the stipulation that the existing marquee wall sign not be illuminated in the future, and to grant a variance for a non-conforming commercial center identification monument sign as it currently exists with the replacement of the sign faces only and to incorporate the findings of fact by reference. Mr. Panczuk seconded the motion.

Mr. Maciejewski requested a roll call vote. Mr. Hastings --- yes. Mr. Ryan --- yes. Mr. Panczuk --- yes. Mr. Maciejewski --- yes.

The motion was carried by voice vote (4/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

OLD BUSINESS:


Mr. Maciejewski asked Attorney Kuiper for a progress report on the matter of Mr. Tim Salamon, 8990 Tapper Street, which the Board heard in August.

Attorney Kuiper informed the Board that as of today, according to the Town Manager, the Petitioner has engaged an engineer who is reviewing the structure. Mr. Ryan stated his understanding is that no one from the Town has yet reviewed the structure.

(General discussion ensued.)

Attorney Kuiper noted that the Town has no tree house code. Mr. Maciejewski noted that the height and size of the play structure was not addressed prior to the Petitioner coming before the Board for a variance. Mr. Maciejewski remarked that the play structure was built and proper procedure was not followed. He stated the Board’s dilemma is whether or not they should even be considering a variance for a structure that might have to be torn down.

Mr. Maciejewski asked if, procedurally, this matter should be continued each month. Attorney Kuiper noted that the matter could be continued at the Board’s discretion, but not indefinitely.

Attorney Kuiper noted in absence of approval, the structure has to come down. Attorney Kuiper stated that the matter is pending, but will have to be addressed in the near future.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Maciejewski noted that the Salamon public hearing was continued from the August meeting to tonight’s meeting. He stated he would entertain a motion to continue the public hearing on the Salamon Developmental Technical Variance at 8990 Tapper, with no extension of this matter past the next meeting. “So moved,” by Mr. Hastings. Mr. Panczuk seconded the motion.

Mr. Maciejewski requested a roll call vote. Mr. Hastings --- yes. Mr. Ryan --- yes. Mr. Panczuk --- yes. Mr. Maciejewski --- yes.

The motion was carried by voice vote (4/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

Mr. Maciejewski called for additional Old Business. There was no further Old Business.

OPEN TO THE FLOOR FOR PUBLIC COMMENT:


Mr. Maciejewski opened the floor for public comment. He called for public comment. There was no public comment. Mr. Maciejewski closed the floor to public comment.

ADJOURNMENT:


Mr. Maciejewski adjourned the meeting. (The meeting was adjourned at 7:50 p.m.)

A TRUE COPY

_______________________________________________
Susan E. Wright, Recording Secretary
St. John Board of Zoning Appeals