[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Stafford 1-11-1999 by L.L. No. 1-1999. Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter is enacted by the Town Board of the Town of Stafford pursuant to the provisions of § 10 of Municipal Home Rule Law to regulate the division of land into individual lots, when such divisions of land fail to meet the threshold for review as a subdivision as set forth in Chapter 152, Subdivision of Land, of the Code of the Town of Stafford. It is declared to be the policy of the Town of Stafford to consider land separations as part of a plan for the orderly, efficient, and economical development of the Town. This means, among other things, that lots created by land separations shall be of such character that they can be used safely for building purposes without danger to health, or peril from fire, flood, or other menace; that proper provision shall be made for drainage, water supply, wastewater treatment, and other needed improvements; that all proposed lots shall be so laid out and of such size as to be in compliance with Chapter 182, Zoning, of the Code of the Town of Stafford and in harmony with the development pattern of the neighboring properties.
This chapter shall be known as "The Town of Stafford Land Separation Law."
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- FORMAL OFFER TO SELL
- Any offer to sell land which involves a form of public offering, including, but not limited to, real estate listings, auction listings, media advertising (printed, radio, television, etc.) or use of signs.
- A. Any division of land into four or fewer lots within a three-year period, where all such developable lots or parcels:
- B. Any division of agricultural land for the purpose of continued agricultural use shall be considered a land separation and subject to this chapter.
- C. The three-year period shall commence running upon the final approval by the Planning Board of the first application to divide the original parcel. Public acquisitions by purchase of strips of land for the widening or opening of streets shall not be included within this definition nor subject to this chapter.
- D. Land separation shall also include the division of land to allow the transfer of property between adjacent parcels, provided nonconforming lots or parcels are not created, no existing degree of nonconformity is increased.
- E. Land separation shall be processed in compliance with this chapter unless the Planning Board deems it necessary for the protection of public health, safety, and welfare (i.e., stormwater drainage, topography, etc.) that a land separation be processed as a subdivision.
- A piece, parcel or plot of land intended as a unit for transfer of ownership or for development.
- PROPERTY OWNER
- The owner of the property subject to the proposed land separation or his/her duly authorized representative (such authorization shall be provided in writing).
- A. Division of land into lots that is not considered a land separation as defined herein. Subdivisions shall include, but are not limited to, the division of land into five or more lots in a three-year period, or division into any number of lots when such lots:
- B. This definition shall apply when land is divided for the purpose, whether immediate or future, of transfer of ownership or development, and shall include resubdivision. Once the division of land is determined to be a subdivision, Chapter 152, Subdivision of Land, of the Code of the Town of Stafford shall apply to all such lots, including any previous lots divided within the prior three-year time period, regardless of whether said lots have been sold singly or collectively.
- C. The three-year period shall commence running upon the final approval by the Planning Board of the first application to divide the original parcel. Public acquisitions by purchase of strips of land for the widening or opening of streets shall not be included within this definition nor subject to said Chapter 152, Subdivision of Land.
- D. Once a subdivision has been created, any subsequent division of lots from the original tract of land into additional developable lots, irrespective of when such division(s) occurs, shall be subject to review as a subdivision, unless such proposed lot(s) is greater than 1/2 mile from any point on the boundary lines of a lot(s) created by a previous subdivision or involve the division of land to allow the transfer of property between adjacent parcels, provided nonconforming lots or parcels are not created and no existing degree of nonconformity is increased.
- TOWN CLERK
- The Town of Stafford Town Clerk.
[Amended 9-9-2013 by L.L. No. 1-2013]
Whenever any land separation is proposed, before any formal offer to sell any lots in such land separation, or any other part thereof, is made, and before any contract for sale is executed by the property owner, the property owner shall submit a sketch plan and obtain written approval of such sketch plan in accordance with the procedures set forth in Subsections A, B and C of this section. In the event that a property owner designates a duly authorized representative in writing, both the property owner and the authorized representative must sign the land separation application to require both individuals to be subject to the rights, duties and penalties set forth in this chapter. Before any land is transferred or any permit for the erection, construction, alteration or movement of any building or structure is issued for such land, final authorization of said land separation shall be obtained and filed in the Genesee County Clerk's Office as set forth in Subsections D and E of this section.
Submission of sketch plan. A property owner shall, prior to undertaking a land separation, submit to the Town Clerk, at least seven days prior to any regular meeting of the Board, a completed application for the 12 copies of a sketch plan of the proposed land separation. The sketch plan shall show the entire parcel being divided, with proposed lot lines, and any existing easements, deed restrictions or covenants affecting the property. At that time, the property owner shall also pay the land separation fee established by separate resolution of the Town Board.
Discussion of requirements and classifications.
The property owner shall attend the meeting of the Planning Board to discuss his/her proposal as set forth in the sketch plan.
Classification of the sketch plan will be made at this time by the Planning Board as to whether the proposal qualifies as a land separation, or must be processed as a subdivision. When it deems necessary for protection of the public health, safety and welfare, the Planning Board may require a land separation to be processed as a subdivision in compliance with Chapter 152, Subdivision of Land.
Study of sketch plan. The Planning Board shall review the sketch plan to determine whether it meets the purpose of this chapter as set forth in § 117-1. The Planning Board shall, where it deems necessary, make specific recommendations, in writing, to be incorporated by the applicant into the proposal prior to final authorization by the Planning Board.
Final authorization. Within 180 days of Planning Board approval, the property owner shall provide the Planning Board Chairperson, or his/her designee, three prints of a property survey prepared by a NYS licensed land surveyor. This survey shall meet all the recommendations made by the Planning Board relative to the sketch plan. Upon determination that the survey complies with the Planning Board's recommendation, the Chairperson, or other duly designated officer of the Planning Board, will sign the application and provide the property owner with a copy of such application. Failure of the property owner to submit the required survey documentation to the Planning Board Chairperson, or his/her designee, within the one-hundred-eighty-day time period will render the Planning Board's approval null and void.
Filing of survey(s) with Genesee County Clerk. Within 60 days of obtaining final authorization from the Planning Board Chairperson, or his/her designee, the property owner shall file the survey(s) at the Genesee County Clerk's office. Failure of the property owner to file such documentation with the Genesee County Clerk within the specified time period will render both the Planning Board's approval and final authorization null and void.
Where the Planning Board finds that special circumstances exist in a proposed land separation, it may waive or modify specific requirements of this chapter, subject to appropriate conditions, provided that such waiver or modification shall not have the effect of nullifying the intent and purpose of this chapter, Chapter 152, Subdivision of Land, Chapter 182, Zoning, or any existing Master Plan and Official Map.
In granting said waivers or modifications, the Planning Board may require such conditions as will, in its judgement, substantially secure the objectives of the standards or requirements so waived or modified.
All applicable statutes, laws and local ordinances in conflict with the provisions of this chapter, including §§ 276 and 277 of New York State Town Law, are hereby superseded to the extent necessary to give this chapter full force and effect.
[Added 9-9-2013 by L.L. No. 1-2013]
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to divide or otherwise alter existing property lines of lots or parcels of property without first complying with this chapter or the subdivision of land regulations in Chapter 152.
Where the Zoning Enforcement Officer finds a violation of these provisions, he/she shall serve a written order-notice upon the owner by registered mail to remedy such condition. Such written notice shall include the provisions of law violated, the corrective action to be taken, the penalties and remedies which may be invoked by the Town for noncompliance and time for compliance.
Any violation of this chapter or Chapter 152 regulating land separations and land subdivisions, shall be deemed an offense punishable by a fine and/or imprisonment as set forth in § 268 of New York State Town Law. Each and every week such violation continues shall be deemed a separate and distinct violation.
The Zoning Enforcement Officer may, with permission of the Town Board, institute court action to enforce any violation of the provisions of this chapter or Chapter 152.
In addition to the remedies described in this section, the Town of Stafford may seek an injunction to restrain, correct or abate any violation of this chapter or Chapter 152 and/or maintain an action at law for damages sustained as a result of any violation of these chapters. Damages may include but not be limited to legal fees and court costs expended or incurred by the Town as a result of legal proceedings brought hereunder.
The Town Zoning Enforcement Officer is authorized herein to issue and serve appearance tickets with respect to violation(s) of these chapters which he/she is required to enforce.