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Half Moon looks at central septic system

Saturday, June 14, 2014 - Updated: 9:14 PM



PISECO -- Half Moon Beach Inc. on Old Piseco Rd. here is thinking about putting in a central septic system.

President Dave Malone and Manager Dave Roberts of Half Moon Beach approached the Town of Arietta Planning Board May 13 to present an outline (not plans) for a central septic system.

Half Moon Beach currently has 97 septic systems. While the town has encouraged central septic systems in mobile home parks, no one has done it yet. Half Moon Beach wants to do this.

One major objection of the Half Moon shareholders is they don't want to pay for a central system if they can never replace their existing trailer because of the square foot and setback rules currently in the land use code.

Some of the sites in Half Moon Beach would not have enough room to put a new trailer in under these regulations. They feel that with a central septic system the square foot regulation would no longer be necessary.

It was suggested that the land use code be changed regarding lot sizes and setbacks for trailers in mobile home parks that have an approved central septic system.

The NYS Department of Environmental Conservation has approved Half Moon Beach's proposal and percolation and water usage tests have been done.

Each unit would have to have a 1,000-gallon tank installed in order to hook up to the central system. Malone would like some idea of the town's position regarding the proposal by early August, as the annual shareholders' meeting is held in August.

The project hinges on approval by the town and Half Moon Beach shareholders and obtaining financing.


It was also suggested an addition be made to the land use code to exclude uncovered decks from the 1,000 square-foot maximum. Malone feels this is a zoning officer rule, not a land use code rule, and should be addressed.

He also feels new wording should be considered concerning screening in a roofed porch. Several at the meeting said it tends to boomerang, with screening requiring a partial wall that leads to sheetrock and eventually a new actual room. They want the code to prevent this from happening.


Following Hamilton County Clerk Jane Zarecki's query in April about what the planning board considers a "natural subdivision" and if it requires approval, the board members agreed this term has always meant a parcel divided by roads or rivers or streams.

Splitting such a parcel into two with the natural boundary as a new property line has never needed approval from the Arietta Planning Board.

Real Property Tax Service Director Barry Baker contacted the Adirondack Park Agency, the regional zoning authority. He found that, with the exception of pre-existing (before 1973) separately deeded parcels, natural subdivisions have not been recognized since 2011.

This means properties formerly considered to possess a natural subdivision now require planning board approval to be subdivided.


Nancy and John Wheeler asked the planning board how they should proceed in subdividing their property on Wild Road. They have applied for a permit to do so.

Chairwoman Mary Kiewicz informed them of the new definition of a natural subdivision and that this may cause them difficulty as there is a road dividing their property. One piece is 1.3 acres and the other 2.11 acres.

They were advised to submit a Jurisdictional Inquiry Form to the APA, get surveys of both pieces showing well and septic locations and then come back to the Planning Board.


Randy Huta approached the planning board as executor of Bobbie Wagoner's estate in Higgins Bay. This involves 9.9 acres. There is a house on .78 acres and 9.12 acres with a well across the road.

Again, the road is no longer considered a natural subdivision. Since there is already a house on the smaller piece, Huta could pursue a variance for that non-complying substandard lot.

He will pursue a variance and then come back to the planning board.

Note: This article is based on minutes of the Arietta Planning Board meeting of May 13, 2014 as provided by Secretary Marie Buanno.


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