Deadline snafu delays senior housing project site review

Gwen Chamberlain

The Yates County Planning Board did not approved a referral for a planned 15-unit senior living development in Keuka Park at last week’s monthly meeting because envirnomental review documents were not submitted by the board’s deadline.

Fred Thomas, representing developer Steven McMichael and engineer Gerald Kernahan told the Planning Board they were under the impression a previous environmental review that had been completed for a special use permit could be used for the final site plan review.

Planning Board Chairman Ron Rubin told Thomas the board does not consider an application ready for review until the completed environmental review documents are submitted.

Yates County Planner Shawna Bonshack said the form can be completed by the Jerusalem Planning Board and the county planning board can review the site plan in June.

“We’re trying to do things the way it’s prescribed,” said Thomas, later adding, “We feel time is of the essence and we’re being stone-walled. We’re trying to be professional. We’re going to be putting over $3 million back on the tax rolls and I just can’t help but think we’re being stone-walled.”

The deadline to provide complete applications for review at the county planning board’s May 24 meeting was May 15. Rubin pointed out that documents were received by board members right before the meeting.

Other items on the board’s agenda included:

Penn Yan

• A referral from the village of Penn Yan for an area variance for a sign at 110 Main St. The maximum allowed sign length is 10’. The property owners, Stephen Griffin and Kevin Bailey are requesting a variance to permit a new sign to fit the existing 14 ft. sign frame on the building.  The board approved the referral.

• The board approved an area variance requested by Habitat for Humanity to extend a porch on a house on Seneca Street.

• The board approved a site plan for additions to an existing building in the Penn Yan Industrial Park on Powell Lane. Document Reprocessors is planning to construct two additions to a building and add 19 parking spaces.


• The board approved the Branchport Hamlet Plan.

• The board approved the site plan for renovation and expansion of the former Branchport Elementary School to be used as part of the Museum of the Finger Lakes. Executive Director Don Naetzger said the plan calls for re-establishing the driveway between the school property and Route 54A. He said the projec will incorporate innovative storm water practices. He said the plans will be discussed for the final site plan approval at the Town of Jerusalem Planning Boad meeting on June 7.