Plan­ning com­mis­sion OKs new­est an­nex­a­tion re­quest

Pro­posal now heads to Eas­ton Town Coun­cil

Sunday Star - - LOCAL - By JOSH BOLLINGER jbollinger@star­dem.com Fol­low me on Twit­ter @jbol­l_s­tar­dem.

EAS­TON — Eas­ton Plan­ning Com­mis­sion mem­bers on Thurs­day, Aug. 17, unan­i­mously voted to pos­i­tively rec­om­mend the town coun­cil an­nex two parcels of land north of Eas­ton’s cur­rent bound­ary.

JD Oliver LLC wants the town to an­nex nearly 4 acres of land at 9433 Ocean Gate­way, which con­sists of two parcels that sit just east of U.S. Route 50, ad­ja­cent to the cur­rent town bound­ary that runs along the high­way.

The prop­er­ties are oper­ated for large truck and equip­ment sales and ser­vices. The prop­erty im­me­di­ately to the east of Route 50 pri­mar­ily op­er­ates as the sales fa­cil­ity, and fur­ther east of that is a prop­erty that car­ries out re­pairs for the busi­ness, ac­cord­ing to Bren­dan Mul­laney, a lawyer rep­re­sent­ing JD Oliver LLC.

Ryan Showal­ter, Mul­laney’s col­league also rep­re­sent­ing the com­pany, said what’s driv­ing the an­nex­a­tion re­quest is the busi­ness there has sep­tic lim­i­ta­tions and “strug­gles to fig­ure out how to ex­pand in the county.” Busi­nesses want­ing to hook up to Eas­ton’s public wa­ter and sewer ser­vices have been a driv­ing force be­hind sev­eral re­cent an­nex­a­tions pro­posed in Eas­ton. The ap­pli­cant also was granted a re­quest that the plan­ning com­mis­sion rec­om­mend a gen­eral com­mer­cial zon­ing for the two prop­er­ties.

“Sales of au­tos is per­mit­ted in the gen­eral com­mer­cial zon­ing un­der the town’s or­di­nance and re­pair of au­to­mo­biles is per­mit­ted by spe­cial ex­cep­tion,” Mul­laney said at the plan­ning com­mis­sion meet­ing.

“Af­ter an­nex­a­tion, the town treats the use of auto re­pair as be­ing ap­proved for spe­cial ex­cep­tion, but any mod­i­fi­ca­tion of that spe­cial ex­cep­tion on the build­ing or use of that par­cel would re­quire us to come in front of you and the board of ap­peals as a mod­i­fi­ca­tion for the spe­cial ex­cep­tion,” he said.

The prop­er­ties to the north, south and east of the pro­posed an­nex­a­tion prop­er­ties are cur­rently not in­side of the town’s bound­aries ei­ther, but Eas­ton Town At­tor­ney Sharon Van Em­burgh said the JD Oliver prop­erty passes the town’s re­quire­ment that the land be con­tigu­ous to the town’s cur­rent bound­aries.

The an­nex­a­tion re­quest has to go be­fore Tal­bot County’s plan­ning com­mis­sion and even­tu­ally the county coun­cil, which has to ap­prove it and zon­ing for the parcels. Eas­ton Town Coun­cil mem­bers also have to ap­prove the an­nex­a­tion.

Busi­nesses want­ing to hook up to Eas­ton’s public wa­ter and sewer ser­vices have been a driv­ing force be­hind sev­eral re­cent an­nex­a­tions pro­posed in Eas­ton.

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