North East Planning Board considers two applications

MILLERTON — The North East Planning Board held its regular meeting on May 22 and moved forward on two applications.

Pine Plains surveyor Wesley Chase representing Robert and Leah Sprague, the owners of 43 Old Post Road, showed survey maps rearranging the parcel boundaries of the property owned by the Spragues which is divided by Route 22 and Old Post Road 3 and borders on the Rail Trail to the east and Columbia County to the west.

Two new tax parcels would be created — 57 acres of forested vacant land west Route 22, and a smaller parcel stretching east including a renovated farm house on 12 acres. After discussion the board approved an escrow amount of $250 and will make a recommendation at the next meeting.

The second presentation was by Peter Sander of Rennia Engineering representing the Buddhafield on Cooper Road.

Buddhafield first was approved for development in phases in 2003 when the 42- acre property was purchased by Rangrig Yeshe, a Buddhist affiliated non-profit with U.S. headquarters in Syracuse.

Wednesday night was a Phase IV Site Plan request to extend and straighten the existing driveway and construct a four-bedroom residence. (See photo.) Discussion ensued about what had been approved in 2003 when the overall plan received a Special Use Permit from the ZBA and again in 2013 when several revisions were made to the plan.

“Of the 7 phases approved in the 2013 Amended Master Plan, Phases 1 -3 have since been reviewed and approved by the Town of North East Planning Board,” according to the accompanying request from Rennia.

Under consideration is a 4-bedroom 2,945 square foot footprint building which will serve as a part-time residence for the Buddafield’s founding lama and teacher Shyalpa Tenzin Rinpoche. The Board agreed to a site visit on June 3 at 3:30 pm to “alleviate any visual concerns” according to Sander and observe whether any part of the building could be seen from the road by floating balloons above the site at the height of the proposed structure. Following this visit a public hearing will be held during a Special Planning Board meeting on June 12 at 7:45 p.m. In the meantime Planning Board Clerk Lorna Sherman will be emailing previous site approvals to all board members for their review.

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