Yates Board nixes TOPS pole sign

John Christensen

TOPS supermarket on Liberty Street requested two area variances; one, to erect a street pole sign and two, for additional signage area. At its meeting June 23, the County Planning board unanimously denied the request characterizing it as “excessive.”

In her memo to the Village of Penn Yan Zoning Board of Appeals, County Planner Shawna Bonshak explained:

“When TOPS moved into the former P&C building, their signage was grandfathered, as P&C had received area variances for a sign on the Liberty Street side of their building as well as additional sign area beyond what is permitted.

“TOPS is currently requesting variances above and beyond what was granted to P&C; they would like additional sign area as well as a pole sign (not permitted by the Village Code) at their Liberty Street entrance.”

Bonshak’s memo outlines the reasoning behind the decision, based on area varience criteria:

• The current sign on the building is substantial, clearly visible from the front of the store and the Liberty Street side, and corporate identity can be achieved through other means.

“The store is located in the Village Commercial zone, which has elements of commercial and residential which warrants careful placement of free-standing signage. Additionally, Liberty Street is a heavily traveled gateway through the county to other municipalities. The pole sign would create an eyesore along Liberty Street that would hinder efforts to beautify this corridor,” she wrote.

Her memo also states that illumination of the sign would be intrusive to neighbors.

Should it disagree, the Village Zoning Board of Appeals can overrule the YCPB decision by a super-majority vote.

The following referrals were all granted by unanimous decision unless otherwise noted:


•  Town of Milo, request one year moratorium on hydrofracking.

• Craig and Joanne Jones at 2470 George Fullager Road, Milo, request for subdivision approval to combine two parcels and subdivide them into three parcels.

•  Charles Loveland at 2348 Lerch Road, Milo, requests three area variances for the construction of a detached garage (front yard setback, height and lot coverage).

• Bob and Jane Morello at 442 East Lake Road, Milo, request four area variances for the construction of a single-family dwelling (lot coverage, north and south side setbacks and height). Ron Rubin opposed.

• Peggy Muffley at 565 East Lake Road, Milo, requests four area variances to construct a sunroom (front yard, side and rear yard setbacks; lot coverage). Rubin opposed.


•  Harbor View Townhomes at 2 Mill St., Jerusalem, request for 10 rear-yard setback variances.

•  Malcolm Lane at 1183 Sylvan Drive, Jerusalem, requests two area variances for the construction of a single-family dwelling (front yard setback and lot coverage). Rubin and Wayne Davidson opposed.


• Allen Sensenig at 5279 Rte. 14A, Starkey, requests an Amended Special Use Permit to move a retail store, currently operating in his home, to a proposed new building on the same parcel. James Ritter, from Starkey, abstained.

Penn Yan

• Shari Brodmann at 225 Main Street, Penn Yan, requests an Area Variance to operate a bakery/café in the Residential Transition district in the former florist shop next to the Public Safety Building.

In other business:

•?TORREY MEMBER: The board welcomed the new member from Torrey, David Granzin.

• STEEP?SLOPES: The third version of Milo’s steep slope zoning has been submitted for review.

• HEIGHT: The board will request Milo re-examine its code that building height be measured from the lowest elevation of the parcel rather from the average elevation used by other county municipalities.

• LAKEFRONT?CODES: The board will request that lakefront municipalities review their codes for percentage of building/lot coverage. Many codes were developed when all lakefront homes were dependent on septic systems for wastewater.