Gabe’s Collision appears to face an uphill battle in getting a collision shop, automotive sales and rental facility approved for 5871 Transit Road, Clarence.
Town Board members did not vote Wednesday on Gabe’s request for a special-exception-use permit required for the project, but they talked about it and plan to take up the request at their March 13 meeting.
The Planning Board last week voted, 5-2, to recommend against granting Gabe’s the permit. Robert Sackett, the Planning Board’s chairman, said the majority of members determined a collision shop was not an allowed use at that location.
“There was a lot of discussion about protecting the neighborhood, and there was a feeling, but yet it wasn’t in the motion, that there were some inadequacies relative to the nature of a collision shop in the neighborhood,” Sackett told the Town Board during its work session Wednesday.
Residents of the neighboring Laurel Park subdivision have opposed the project; the proposed location is between Highland Farms Drive and Laurel Park Lane.
The Town Board has the final say on Gabe’s request. Councilman Patrick Casilio acknowledged that the Planning Board had conducted an extensive review.
“I know you’ve spent a lot of time [on the issues], and we go off your recommendations, so I’m not inclined to differ from your recommendation,” he said.
In other news from Wednesday’s meeting:
• The Town Board made changes to its deer-control program, which has generated debate over the past few months.
Hunters approved to participate will be paid $35 per deer killed, up from $25 previously. And the program’s coordinator, Dennis Londos, will be paid a $3,000 stipend, instead of a fee per deer taken as under the program in the past.
Board members praised the program as a way to reduce car crashes involving deer and to protect homeowners’ shrubbery destroyed by deer.
“We want to have a public service program, but we don’t want to have it look like there’s a bounty for going out and shooting deer,” said Councilman Bernard Kolber. “I think this keeps it in perspective.”
Supervisor David C. Hartzell Jr. addressed why the hunters are paid. The program years ago did not pay the shooters, and it fizzled, he said.
“It’s difficult to find people who will shoot for free on a cold February night,” Hartzell said.
Participating hunters are being paid more because they are now required to obtain a $50 state permit to act as “nuisance wildlife agents,” Councilman Robert Geiger said. About 120 deer have been killed under the program so far this season, he said.
• The Spaulding Lake Homeowners Association is requesting formation of a town sewer district to serve Spaulding Lake’s 265 households, as it seeks to discontinue operation of its own sewage treatment plant. Paul Cambria, president of the group, said that if a sewer line were extended to serve Spaulding Lake, it would both provide a solution for the residents and create development opportunities for nearby properties.
The Town Board directed the Planning Board to review the request involving a sewer district, without committing to forming one.