[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Meeting of the Town of Foxborough as Art. V, § 13, of the General Bylaws. Amendments noted where applicable.]
In order to help protect the water storage and quality within the Town of Foxborough, and to protect the welfare of the inhabitants of the Town, the following Earth Removal Bylaw is adopted pursuant to the provisions of MGL c. 40, § 21, Paragraph 17.
For the purpose of the bylaw, the following definitions shall apply:
- The Board of Selectmen of the Town of Foxborough.
- Includes soil, loam, sand, and gravel.
No earth shall be moved from any parcel of land within the Town to another parcel, either within or without the Town, except upon approval of a special use permit by the Board.
All applications for such special use permits shall be accompanied by exhibits and documentation deemed necessary by the Board for the proper issuance of a permit, which may include the following:
Name and address of the legal owner of the land in question.
Name and address of the petitioner, if different.
Names and addresses of all owners of property within 100 feet of the land.
Plans of the land prepared by a registered engineer or land surveyor and indicating: tract boundaries, adjacent streets and roads, the limits of the proposed excavation, the location of all structures within 200 feet of said limits, original topography by five-foot contours, proposed final contours at five-foot intervals, and the location and proposed use of all structures and buildings to be used in connection with the removal operation. All such plans shall indicate a division of the land into acres.
A plan of the site indicating the depth of loam before excavation at intervals of 100 feet by means of a surveyed grid.
Statement of plans for the disposal of rock, tree stumps, and other waste materials, and for the drainage of the site and excavation during and after the removal operation.
A plan and specification, prepared by a registered engineer or land surveyor, for the final grading and restoration of the site.
Such fees as may from time to time be established pursuant to MGL c. 40, § 22F, shall be charged for making an application.
Upon receipt of an application for a permit for earth removal:
The Board shall appoint a time and place for a public hearing, notice of which shall be given to the applicant, and shall be published at least 14 days before such hearing in a newspaper having a circulation in the Town.
The Board shall inspect the site covered by the application.
The Conservation Commission shall be given a copy of the plans and application for review and comment at least 14 days before a public hearing.
A reasonable fee shall be charged for each permit issued, in accordance with a schedule published by the Board, based on the volume of gravel removal authorized by the permit. In addition, the Board has the authority to retain a qualified professional engineer for the purpose of insuring that the provisions of the bylaws and the permit are complied with. Such engineers may be retained at any time either before or during the term of the permit. As a condition of the issuance of an earth removal permit, the petitioner shall agree to reimburse the Town of Foxborough for all such engineering fees and expenses associated with the permit.
No excavation shall be permitted below the grade of a road bounding the property in question at any point nearer than 300 feet to such road.
No excavation below the natural grade of any tract boundary shall be permitted nearer than 50 feet to such boundary. Natural vegetation shall be left and maintained on the undisturbed land for screening and noise reduction.
The area excavated during the duration of the permit shall be restored to conform to the natural state of the area and surrounding areas by grading, re-topsoiling, topsoiling, and planting, so that all scars resulting from the removal operation are eliminated annually during the period of the permit and any subsequent renewals.
No slope shall be left unattended or in its final stage with a slope steeper than 3:1 (33%);
All debris, stumps, boulders, etc. shall be removed from the site and disposed of in an approved location and manner;
At the Board of Selectmen's discretion, a monthly report shall be required to be submitted to the Board stating the amount of earth removed by a field survey and measured by a registered engineer or land surveyor.
No permit for earth removal shall be issued if such removal will:
Endanger the general health or safety or constitute a nuisance, or endanger the quality or quantity of any aquifer, groundwater or alter bodies of water.
Result in detriment to the normal use of adjacent property by reason of noise, dust, or vibration.
Result in traffic hazard in residential areas, or congestions, and physical damage on public ways.
Term of permit.
A special use permit for any earth removal shall not be issued for more than one year's duration.
A special use permit may, following a site inspection and certification by the Board that all conditions of the bylaws and permit have been completed, be reissued twice, subject to the bylaws in force at the time of renewal and subject to any conditions imposed by the Board, without a new application and public hearing.
In approving the issuance of a permit, the Board shall impose reasonable requirements, conditions, limitations, and safeguards to protect the health, welfare, convenience, and safety of the public, and to promote the best interests of the neighborhood and of the Town. These conditions, which shall constitute a part of the permit, may include, but are not limited to, method of removal, type and location of temporary structures, hours of operations, routes for transportation of material through the Town, area and depth of excavation, steepness of slopes excavated, establishment of finish grades and levels, provisions for permanent and temporary drainage, disposition of waste incident to the operation, grading, re-topsoiling, topsoiling, seeding, planting, fencing necessary for public safety, and inspection of the premises at any time by the Board or its representatives. Limitations in Subsection A and B above may be waived when, in the opinion of the Board, the best interest of the area would be served by a revised grading plan.
No permit shall be issued until the owner of the site has granted to the Town an easement over the land in question and conveys to the Town the legal right to enter upon said land with equipment and personnel for the purpose of making acceptable restoration in accordance with the approved restorations plan in the event of default of such restoration specified in the permit by the owner or his contractual representative.
No trucking operation shall be allowed within a one-mile radius of any elementary school during the first hour preceding the school's opening and also during the first hour following the school's closing.
No loam shall be removed from the Town of Foxborough.
Special use permits for earth removal in excess of 200 yards per acre may be issued only if the Board of Selectmen determines that, in their opinion, such issuances are in the best interests of both the Town as a whole and the neighborhood surrounding the proposed operation. Any such permit shall be limited to cases where the earth removal is incidental to a primary purpose which is the construction of a facility that is in conformance with all relevant zoning regulations. The amount of earth removal in any operation approved under the provisions of this subsection shall be limited to the minimum amount required to achieve that primary purpose. Furthermore, permits issued under the provisions of this subsection shall be limited to not more than 12 months. One renewal of up to six months may be granted at the discretion of the Selectmen. The term "facility" as used in this bylaw shall be defined as those structures necessary to install the foundation and basement of a building and/or other structures together with such driveways, parking areas and septic systems as may be authorized by said permit or required by the Board of Health.
No special use permit shall be required for the following:
Moving of earth within the limits of an individual parcel or series of contiguous parcels of land in single ownership.
Removal of earth from an operating farm, nursery, or cemetery to the extent that such removal is necessary to the operation of same. The term "operating farm" as used in this section shall be defined as a parcel of land five acres or more in area, the primary and principal use of which is agriculture and which is being actively operated for agriculture as the primary and principal use of the land and not as an accessory use.
The moving and removal of earth for any municipal purpose by, or on behalf of, any department of the Town of Foxborough.
A noncommercial operation of moving and removal of earth within the Town of Foxborough by one load not in excess of two cubic yards.
Removal of not more than 200 cubic yards of earth from a site where a building is under construction pursuant to a building permit to the extent as may be necessary to install the foundation and basement of the building.
Removal of earth from a site by governmental authority to the extent as may be necessary to complete the project as planned.
Any person, firm, or corporation willfully violating, disobeying, or refusing to comply with any of the provisions of this bylaw shall be prosecuted under the terms of MGL c. 40, § 21, and shall be subject to a fine of, for the first offense, $50; for the second offense, $100; and for each subsequent offense, $200.
The Town Manager, Building Commissioner, Police Chief or any person designated by the Board is hereby empowered to enforce this chapter and is hereinafter referred to as the "enforcing person." The enforcing person, as an alternative to such prosecution under the terms of MGL c. 40, § 21, may seek enforcement through a noncriminal proceeding pursuant to the provisions of MGL c. 40, § 21D, in which case the penalty for violation of this bylaw shall be $200.
Each day of noncompliance with this bylaw shall constitute a separate offense. The Board may revoke or suspend the permit of any person, firm, corporation or limited-liability company holding a permit under this bylaw if such person, etc. violates, disobeys, or fails to comply with any of the provisions of such permit or of this bylaw.
Within the Zone II of a public water supply the following is prohibited: the removal of soil, loam, sand, gravel or any other mineral substances within six feet of the historical high groundwater table (as determined from monitoring wells and historical water table fluctuation data compiled by the United States Geological Survey), unless the substances removed are redeposited within 45 days of removal on the site to achieve a final grading greater than six feet above the historical high water mark, and except for excavations for roads, building foundations, or utility works.