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Town of Hampden

Planning Board / Public Hearing

January 9, 2002

Approved:  January 23, 2002


7pm – Town House Auditorium – Public Hearing opened for application of:

David Niccum – 13 Colonial Village for a Special Permit under Table of Uses 6.12 to be allowed to operate a Home Occupation in an accessory building.

The legal notice was read by the Chair, John D. Flynn, and the members present were introduced:  Joseph Kruzel, Joseph Mascaro, Melissa Reeves, Charlie Dolben and the Clark, Judy Jackson.

David Niccum introduced his son, Jonathan Niccum, who is the owner of the property and spoke for his father, the applicant of the Special Permit request.  Jonathan described the home as the “Niccum Compound” stating that his grandfather also lives there.  Although David Niccum took out his application stating that he was semi-retired and was building weathervanes and lamps, he is not making weathervanes anymore but is producing lanterns.  His collection of weathervane molds have been sold.  He applied for the Special Permit because he does sell the things he makes.  Making lanterns makes very little noise and they are easier to make.  He works four hours a day and has one part-time employee who works out of his own home.  The parts are sent out and there is no plan to expand the business.  Currently the business is located in a rental location and that will be eliminated.  This operation is being looked at as strictly a retirement for David Niccum in the barn to the rear of the property.

Chair noted that the Board had received three written responses and one phone call.  The Schwabe’s (#26 Colonial Village) are in favor of this use.  Mrs. Jeannette Green of 3 Colonial Village wrote a note stating she would welcome this use and wished Niccum success.  Police Chief Philip Adams sent a note of concurrence with Safety Office William Joy’s positive comments.  Historical Commission Chair, Connie Witt, wrote that the group finds no negative impact and went on to state that this use falls under the Town’s Master Plan guidelines.

Mrs. Karen Vella, 21 Colonial Village, spoke to say that she was concerned that if she sells her home, there is now a business next door and was concerned about the noise.  If there is no noise, she will have no complaint.  The driveway owned by Richard Gallivan is used to gain vehicle access to this barn and abuts her property line.

Jonathan Niccum said the pasture to the rear is rented out and the horse owners come to feed the animals.  This easement is part of the deed, with Richard Gallivan-the owner and limits guests and assignees.  He offered to produce a copy of the Deed but the board did not follow up on this as being necessary.

There are no UPS trucks or metal being delivered.  Dipping is done in West Springfield with no chemicals on site.

Abutter Paul Brehaut, 20 Colonial Village asked:  Does this make it a business zone?

John D. responded that no, it remains a home occupation.

Charlie Dolben:  Are you comfortable with this use?  Niccum replied, yes.

Jim Richter, owner of 561 Main, asked if this use can be rolled over to other properties he owns.  Reply – No, the special permit is only related to the separate building in the application.

Kim Brehaut, 20 Colonial Village, I am interest in health issues.  I hear that “no chemicals are being used.”

J. Niccum explained the use adding that they have found it cheaper to contract out the cleaning and oxidizing.  They use lead free solder and lead-free flux and have a beader which is hand driven.

M. Reeves:  You say all your equipment is sold?  Reply:  80% is hand equipment, a beader and tools no different than those that would be found in your own barn.

Chair:  Are we comfortable with the use of the driveway?

It is in current use now.  The owner of the horse gets in to feed twice a day.

Meeting Closed:  7:35pm                      Members adjourned to Meeting Room


1)                  Minutes of December 5th approved as read.

2)                  Land Court Reported:  Board voted to continue the subscription at $143.00.  Clerk will submit voucher.

3)                  Annual Report:  Due January 14th – Flynn reported that he had not completed it for review tonight and discuss with the Board what he planned to include.

4)                  Budget:  Clerk submitted with Chair’s verbal approval 3% raise – clerical $10,625.00.  Expenses level funded: $535.00.

5)                  All Dept. Meeting 12/12/01.  Flynn and Clerk attended and discussed the various topics presented.  In discussing Stormwater Phase II Regulations, Kruzel said the Town will become involved because of the Mill River.  This involves public education, record keeping of street sweepings and discharge into the Connecticut River from the Mill River Tributory.

6)                  Mini-Mall / Dunkin’ Donuts – Traffic: A letter was sent on December 4th from Dr. Penny Peck / Hampden Veterinary Clinic to Al Timbro regarding speed signs, bumps and a dog walk area.  It was discussed that the traffic flow wouldn’t come back across the front of the mall.  If traffic problems are

documented, the owner will put in speed bumps 

E.O. 418:  Melissa Reeves went to a workshop sponsored by the PVPC and she reported the concept is starting to come together for her.  There is  $30,000.00    available for each community to focus on housing, economic Development, open space or transportation.  The PVPC is available to assist in the development of a scope of services or we can use another consultant for all or part of the planning process.  This has to be subbed out by June.  We need our Master Plan updated.  For $5,000.00 we could develop a scope of services.

      7)         Jonathan Niccum & David Niccum:  The Board spoke with the Niccum’s as

the Application had been made for the Special Permit under the impression that David Niccum owned the property and that weathervanes were to be made.  There is also a part-time employee that on occasion will be on site.  Jonathan said he would like to conform to the zoning, which allows one other person to be employed 2.721 and 7.121.3.  This could have been applied for but at the hearing it was stated that there would only be Mr. Niccum and one employee who works out of his home.


The Board took the information under advisement and Charlie will draft a decision to be discussed at the next meeting.


Submitted By:

                                     Judith M. Jackson, Clerk