Agendas and Minutes

December 5, 2017 Working Planning Commission Minutes

Royalton Township Working Planning Commission Meeting Minutes

6052 Royalton Road, Braham, MN 55006
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5 December 2017 - Approved


6:30 p.m., 5 December 2017, Chair Leslie Orvis convened the Royalton Township working planning commission meeting with members Jeff Schlaeger, Priscilla Schneider, Duane Swanson, and Gary Valvoda present.  Supervisor Wayne Olson also attended.


The draft fence ordinance was discussed.  Paragraph "d" was altered to include board of supervisors and to permit snow fence during winter conditions.  An amended version is attached to these minutes.  With those changes, the commission will review this draft at its next regular meeting.  When the board agrees on a final draft, the commission asked if legal counsel should be involved before its finalization.


Supervisor Olson and Chair Orvis had inspected the turnaround on Eagle Lane (T133), confirming that it was 2640' north of Robin Drive. They presented three options:


a) Go out 2640' north of Robin and make a backward "L" turnaround on the property immediately to the west of Eagle Lane.  This would require permission from landowners on the east and west side of Eagle, tree removal, and possibly pole and/or guy wire changes.

b) Go out 2640' north of Robin and construct a "T" with nose in on property to the east and backing into property on the west.  This would require permission from landowners to the east and west, tree removal, and possibly pole and/or guy wire changes.

c) Formalize the existing turnaround solely on the property to the east of Eagle.  This would not require tree removal and would require only permission of the landowner to the east.


Under all options, the township would cover all costs and the landowners would be consulted before any decisions or marking would occur.  These options will be presented to the board for its review and discussion.


At the direction of the board, the commission discussed a potential letter to all residents regarding enforcement of the "junk" ordinance.  Preliminary discussion centered on the feasibility of a "fluffy" letter expressing the board's desire that the township should be a pleasing place to live, where health and safety of the citizens are protected, and where property values are not subject to decline because of excessive junk.  The letter could cite the provisions of the ordinance, explain its history, and note that during the annual road inspection in April the board will focus particularly on excessive, unlicensed vehicles on properties in the township.  There was discussion about a postcard to this effect that had been mailed to all residents about ten years ago.  Clerk Swanson was asked to locate a copy of this postcard.  The possibility of a township "clean-up" day was also discussed.


Amy Thompson, the township's sewer inspector, has requested that the township have sample letters ready to be forwarded to property owners whose sewer systems have become noncompliant.  Usually, these inspections occur when properties are sold under certain circumstances.  Clerk Swanson distributed sample letters issued by the county.  Commission members were asked to think about the contents of these letters so that sample drafts can be made at the next working meeting.  The township is required to follow up on these inspections because the town board has decided to retain sewer inspection duties rather than grant them to the county.


At 8: 35 p.m., the meeting concluded.


Respectfully submitted:


Duane P. Swanson, Clerk/Member



L.O._____                   G.V._____                   J.S._____                     P.S._____

DRAFT - DRAFT 5 December





The placement of fences, screening, and landscaping shall be subject to the following requirements, except for agricultural fences.  Specific requirements shall be subject to the recommendations of the zoning administrator and approval of the board of supervisors.


a.            No fence shall be permitted on public rights-of-way.


b.            No fence, screen, or structure which obstructs the view shall be located within twenty-five (25) feet of the corner formed by the intersection of street or railroad rights-of-way as measured from the intersecting property lines.


c.             That side of the fence considered to be the face, opposite the side with the fence posts, shall face the abutting public or private property.


d.            All fences shall be constructed of material such that the appearance is not deemed detrimental to the property values of the area by the zoning official administrator and/or the board of supervisors.  A fence constructed, or having the appearance, of masonry, wood, or steel must be compatible with surrounding structures.  No snow fencing, construction security fencing, or silt fencing shall be allowed, except during construction and winter conditions.


e.            No fence shall exceed four (4) feet in height in the front yard or eight (8) feet in height in the side and rear yards as measured from the average point between the highest and lowest grades.


f.             Notwithstanding paragraphs "d" and "e" above, open chain link, wire, and similar fences may be constructed and may exceed eight (8)feet in height for animal control or protection of vegetation [e.g. gardens]; such enclosures do not require a fence permit.


g.            In the case of a non-residential use abutting a residential use, the township board may require screening above six (6)feet in height.


h.            Any nonconforming fence which is destroyed or in disrepair, requiring more than fifty (50) percent of its replacement cost to repair, shall be removed and only be rebuilt if in compliance with the standards set forth in this section.


i.              Any fence, wall or similar barrier which is not properly maintained so as to create an eyesore or nuisance shall be removed by owner upon action of the town board at the owner's expense.


j.             If a green belt planting strip is used in lieu of a fence, it shall consist of living vegetative cover of sufficient width and density to provide an effective screen year around.