River Edge Land Use Board Navigates Cannabis and Pool Regulations

In a recent session, River Edge Land Use Board has put forth a recommendation that the proposed cannabis retail establishment ordinance is consistent with the master plan. This recommendation follows a review and discussion of the ordinance, which focuses on the establishment of a cannabis overlay zone, licensing, and taxation of cannabis retail sales near the Liberty Travel location. Additionally, the board tackled various applications concerning property improvements, with a particular focus on the approval of a pool installation that raised questions about lot coverage and drainage implications in the borough.

The proposed cannabis ordinance took center stage at the meeting, as the board members deliberated on its conformity to the town’s master plan. The ordinance, which outlines the framework for cannabis retail in the borough, required the board’s careful consideration of its implications on local zoning, traffic, and parking. The discussion extended to the specifics of the ordinance, including the regulation of site plan approvals for changes in ownership of cannabis establishments, the prohibition of merchandise advertising targeting children, and the precise language regarding the board’s review authority over site plans. The board’s recommendation to the mayor and council marks a step in the borough’s approach to regulating cannabis retail and reflects the town’s evolving stance on cannabis.

In addition to the cannabis ordinance, the board addressed several applications involving property improvements. One such application from David Arabi for the installation of a pool at his residence on Wayne Avenue brought forward a debate on the variances required and the impact on non-conforming improved coverage. The application sparked a conversation about the permissible lot coverage, with board members and the public raising concerns over potential water runoff and flooding. The board delved into the specifics, such as the removal of patios to accommodate the new pool and the implication of these changes on the property’s coverage.

The pool installation application at 250 [inaudible] Street was another focal point, with the board voting to approve an increase in impervious lot coverage to 37%, contingent on the applicant adhering to engineering recommendations concerning drainage solutions.

Further, the board reviewed an old business application for a property on Windsor Road, where the applicant presented revisions to previously submitted plans. The new plans took into account the board’s concerns, which included the elimination of a proposed swimming pool and adjustments to the size of a room and patio to improve the right side yard setback.

The board also passed a motion for variances related to a property on Block 809 Lot 25, addressing issues like a side sidewalk and total side setback. This unanimous decision was accompanied by a broader discussion on the need to amend the land use board ordinance, with particular attention to backyard development and its consequential water problems.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.
Thomas Papaleo
Land Use Board Officials:
Glass, Chris Caslin, Richard Mehrman, Eileen Boland, Dario Chinigo, Ryan Gibbons, Michael Krey, Bruce Feffer, Colin Busteed, Tom Behrens (Borough Planner), Robert Costa (Engineer), Stephen Depken (Land Use Zoning Officer), Brian Chewcaskie (Land Use Attorney), Ed Alter (Land Use Clerk)

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