Non-Zoning Earth Removal
BYLAW: A model bylaw addressing Non-Zoning Earth Removal. Prepared by the Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissions.
DATE ADOPTED: Prepared in 1997.
PURPOSE OF BYLAW:
The removal from the premises during, any twelve-month period of more than twenty-five cubic yards of topsoil, borrow, rock, sod, loam, peat, humus, clay, sand, earth or gravel, except when necessarily incidental to or in connection with the removal at the site of construction of a building, for which a permit has been issued within the past six months, shall not be permitted except in accordance with the following conditions and procedures.
Non-Zoning Earth Removal Bylaw/Ordinance
This model is for a general, non-zoning bylaw or ordinance, adopted under G.L. Ch. 40. If a zoning bylaw is used (HB §15.__) the Commission cannot be part of its administration.
An earth removal committee is hereby formed comprised of one member of each of the following municipal boards, to be selected by said board: Conservation Commission; planning board. health board....
The removal from the premises during, any twelve-month period of more than twenty-five cubic yards of topsoil, borrow, rock, sod, loam, peat, humus, clay, sand, earth or gravel, except when necessarily incidental to or in connection with the removal at the site of construction of a building, for which a permit has been issued within the past six months, shall not be permitted except in accordance with the following conditions and procedures:
1. Written application for a special permit must be made to the earth removal committee. The following shall be conditions for such issuance:
2. The application shall be accompanied by a plan describing the premises and the proposed operation. The plan shall be prepared by a registered land surveyor or engineer showing, property lines, names and addresses of all abutters, including those across any street or way, existing , contours at two foot intervals in the area from which the above material is to be removed, and in surrounding area, together with the contours at two foot intervals below which no excavation shall take place, and the proposed cover vegetation and trees.
3. A performance bond in an amount determined by the earth removal committee shall be posted in the name of the Town assuring satisfactory performance in the fulfillment of the requirements of this bylaw/ordinance and such other conditions as the earth removal committee may impose as conditions to the issuance of its permit.
4. Before granting a permit, the earth removal committee shall give due consideration to the location of the proposed earth removal, to the general character of the neighborhood surrounding such location and to the general safety of the public ways in the vicinity. All truck routes may be subject to approval of the chief of police.
5. Forthwith following expiration or withdrawal of a permit, or upon cessation of operations, all land shall be graded leaving no slopes in excess of one foot vertical to two feet horizontal. providing for surface drainage, boulders and stumps buried or disposed of, and the entire area covered with not less than four inches of topsoil, planted with cover vegetation, which shall have been established prior to release of the bond.
6. Topsoil stripped and stockpiled in preparation for construction or for earth removal shall be restored to its original distribution within 36 months of such stripping, unless a valid building permit or earth removal permit exists.
7. No excavation not intended for approved building, purposes will be closer than 100 feet to an existing, public way or to a neighboring lot line. Natural vegetation shall be left and maintained on the undisturbed land for screening and noise reduction purposes.
8. Operation hours shall be only between 7:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on weekdays and loaded trucks may leave prescribed premises only within such hours. All loaded vehicles shall be suitably covered to prevent dust and contents from spilling and blowing, from the load.
9. The active earth removal operation area shall not exceed a total area of five (5) acres at any one time.
10. All access roads leading to public ways shall be treated with oil, stone, or other suitable material to reduce dust and mud for distance of 200 feet back from said public way. Any spillage on public ways shall be cleaned up by the operator.
11. No excavation shall take place within 6 feet above annual high water table. This elevation shall be established from a test pit and the level related to a permanent monument on the property. This information shall show on the topographic plan.
12. No area shall be excavated so as to cause accumulation of free standing, water. Permanent drainage shall be provided as needed in accordance with good conservation practices. Drainage shall not lead directly into streams or pounds. All top soil and subsoil shall be stripped from the operation area and stock piled for use in restoring the area after the removal operation has ceased. Any temporary shelters or buildings erected on the premises for use by personnel or storage of equipment shall be screened from public view as much as possible. These structures shall be removed from the premises within thirty (30) days after they are no longer needed.
13. Upon completion of the operation and when final grading has been accomplished, the applicant shall supply the earth removal committee with a plan of the area showing, contours at two (2) foot intervals of the finished site drawn by a registered engineer or surveyor.
14. No excavation not intended for approved building purposes will be closer than 100 feet from a wetland or pond or 200 feet from a river.
15. The issuance of a special permit for earth removal shall be for an initial period of no more than three (3) years. A renewal permit will be necessary for each year of each additional year beyond the initial three (3) year period.
16. Any amendment of this bylaw/ordinance shall apply to an areas which is not completely prepared for excavation.