Zoning Board of Appeals Minutes - December 8,
THE CHARTER TOWNSHIP OF CHESTERFIELD
ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS
December 8, 2010
On December 8, 2010, a regular meeting of the
Chesterfield Township Zoning Board of Appeals
was held at the Township Hall located at 47275
Sugarbush, Chesterfield Twp., MI 48047.
1. CALL TO ORDER: Chairman Stepnak called the meeting
to order at 7:00 p.m.
2. ROLL CALL: Present: Marvin Stepnak, Chairman
James Klonowski, Vice-Chairman
Thomas Yaschen, Secretary
Michelle Ficht, Township Board liaison
Absent: Paula Frame, Planning Commission liaison,
Mr. Shawn Shortt attended the meeting as the
representative of the Building Department.
3. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE:
Chairman Stepnak explained the procedures to the
4. ZBA PETITION #2010-33: Kathy Grochulski, 49307
Jefferson, Chesterfield, MI 48047.
Requesting a variance to add an attached garage to an
existing non-conforming house on a non-conforming lot. Location is stated above.
Wayne A. Sorrell, 39588 Lakeshore Drive, Harrison
Twp., MI 48045 addressed the board.
Mr. Sorrell stated that he was the petitioner’s
contractor and they were requesting a variance to add an attached garage on to
an existing home.
Mr. Alexie stated that he had no questions at that
Mr. Yaschen asked if the shed at the back of the
property would stay?
Mr. Sorrell answered yes. He explained that it was
just a little glass green house.
Mr. Klonowski asked Mr. Shortt if there were any set
Mr. Shortt stated that the setback problems exist
because of the non-conformity of the property. His concern was that an ordinance
exists in the Township stating that there
can not be more than three cars in the garage. He
stated that the petitioner’s existing
garage has a header for a 16’ door.
Kathy Grochulski, 49307 Jefferson, Chesterfield, MI
48047 addressed the board.
Petitioner stated that her house is higher than the
garage and there are steps that come down to get into the door. The garage was
never capable of holding two cars. She stated that they had to go way around to
use that other door. Originally, there was basically only one exit out of the
house and she did that because her husband was ill and that way they had two
exits from the home in case there was a fire. She explained that they would be
able to go down and use the small door instead of going around.
Mr. Shortt stated that was correct and that he
remembered doing the inspection on her home and there was a landing with the
stairs. He mentioned that the Township was in a lawsuit over this with someone
who has two 16’ doors. He stated that if the petitioner ever did put a service
door in the back to access her house that she would not be able to come back
with the two 16’ doors. He commented that was his only reason for mentioning
Petitioner made some comments from the audience that
Chairman Stepnak asked Mr. Shortt if the board was
okay in moving forward on the petition?
Mr. Shortt answered yes.
Chairman Stepnak verified that it was okay other than
the question regarding the doors; that the petitioner would not be able to put
in two 16’ doors.
Mr. Shortt answered yes. He stated that the setback on
the front would be around 10’.
Chairman Stepnak explained that it was non-conforming
Mr. Shortt stated that on Killewald the garage would
be somewhere around 10’…as long as it would not be in the right-of-way.
Chairman Stepnak asked if the petitioner had the scale
to drawing in front of them?
Mr. Shortt stated that the plans are not to scale but
it gives him 12 ½ ’ from the existing garage to their property line. He added
that at the rear it’s 31’.
Chairman Stepnak stated that if they moved favorable
on the petitioner he did not want to get hung up where Mr. Shortt would state
they could not do it….
Mr. Shortt stated that if the board approves the
petition, he would be good to go.
There were no comments from the floor.
There was no correspondence from the petitioner’s
Chairman Stepnak that the petitioner mentioned that
she needs space.
Ms. Ficht stated that it was mentioned that there were
police reports about people that have broken into the petitioner’s car.
Chairman Stepnak stated that he understood her
concerns, however, the board has never used that as a benchmark for making their
decisions. He explained that there is a police force and if there are any
problems, the petitioner would have to call them. The board cannot monitor
everything in the community. He asked Mr. Shortt if the board could work with
the sketch the petitioner provided.
Mr. Shortt stated that the paperwork was incorrect. He
pointed out the existing garage to Chairman Stepnak.
Chairman Stepnak invited Mr. Sorrell up to the desk
and explain the paperwork to Mr. Shortt and the board members.
Mr. Shortt explained to Mr. Sorrell what was approved
for the petitioner’s existing house and pointed out the existing garage. He
stated that the papers show 31’ to the rear corner while the front corner is
about 12 ½’ and over here it is about 16’. He explained that the property or the
road kind of goes "kiddywampus" to the house. He pointed out that they would
need a full footing on the garage and pointed out that there was a sanitary lead
coming through an area and that might need to be moved. He stated that the
footing would need to be a minimum of 42". He explained that they would probably
end up with an 11’ rear yard from this corner.
Mr. Sorrell asked if Mr. Shortt or the board members
had the mortgage survey that he turned in with the paperwork?
Mr. Shortt located it and asked who wrote that in
there (indicating something on the paper). He stated that was not done by the
Mr. Sorrell stated that it was probably written by
someone in his office and mentioned that this one here has 40’.
There was a short discussion between Mr. Shortt and
Mr. Sorrell that was inaudible.
Mr. Sorrell stated that the one he turned in was the
only survey that he had to work with.
Mr. Shortt pointed out that the other document was
from her house and it had a seal on it by a surveyor. He mentioned that the
other paperwork is not sealed so which one would be the right one. He would go
by the sealed document.
Chairman Stepnak commented that if the board did move
favorably on the variance, the petitioner would still have to adhere to all
building codes, building requirements, footings, sanitation leads, etc.
Mr. Sorrell agreed.
Mr. Klonowski stated that he thought it was important
to note that the existing garage would only hold one car and it should be part
of the motion that the garage could not be expanded to a four-car.
Mr. Shortt stated he did not have a problem with the
petitioner putting the garage addition. He was only concerned about the setbacks
and if the board approved it; he would be good to go.
Chairman Stepnak stated that it was the classic
example of why the Zoning Board exists. The home is non-conforming and the
property is non-conforming. He stated that the petitioner does have a garage on
Mr. Klonowski asked if the granting of the variance
would be adding to the non-conformity?
Chairman Stepnak stated that probably anything done on
the property would add to the
non-conformity. He commented that it all went back to
the time when this was a resort community. The lots were not designed to hold
Mr. Klonowski commented that in itself would make this
a practical difficulty.
Chairman Stepnak reiterated that probably anything
done on the property would add to the
non-conformity, but the non-conformity would continue
Mr. Shortt explained that the property was a dead lot
that they could not build on and the owner at the time went to the ZBA. He
stated that Norm Davis was there and Jimmy King the boat/car racer had it and
the ZBA came up with this. The front door was supposed to face the address that
the house is built on, but they allowed the petitioner to put the house the
other way because it was a non-conforming lot any way. The petitioner at the
time complied with what the Zoning Board told him to do.
Motion by Mr. Klonowski to approve Petition # 2010-33
for the requested garage. The practical difficulty would be that it is a
non-conforming lot. The existing garage will house one car and it cannot be
expanded to allow two cars; so it would be a three-car garage only.
Supported by Mr. Alexie
Nays: None Motion Granted
5. OLD BUSINESS:
There was no old business.
6. NEW BUSINESS:
Mr. Klonowski mentioned that he thought that the
petition from the last meeting was not signed.
Chairman Stepnak stated that they had neglected to
sign the petition. The petition was denied and he was glad that at the time he
polled the board, so he thought that at least there was a little more
documentation on the matter.
7. APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF PRIOR MEETING:
Motion by Mr. Klonowski to approve the minutes from
the November 10, 2010 meeting.
Supported by Mr. Alexie
Nays: None Motion Granted
8. COMMENTS FROM THE FLOOR:
Chairman Stepnak welcomed Michelle Ficht, Township
Trustee, as the new member of the Zoning Board of Appeals. He thanked Mr. Shortt
for attending the meeting that evening.
Motion by Ms. Ficht to adjourn at 7:34 PM.
Supported by Mr. Yaschen
Nays: None Motion Granted
Thomas Yaschen, Secretary Grace Mastronardi, Recording