20 Aug 2014
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No Tattoos Yet, But A Vote To Review The Regulations

The first vote against their application for tattoo services was a disappointment to the Alberinos, but the PZC decided in a second vote that the out-of-date regs could use a second look.

No Tattoos Yet, But A Vote To Review The Regulations

After two public hearings which included , the vote by the Planning & Zoning Commission (PZC) to deny was a disappointment to Edward and Lisa Alberino.

Edward Alberino said he was upset by the vote initially, but has since taken a step back and reviewed the situation.

"I agree with the commission on their ruling," he said. "I look forward to the upcoming public hearing where we can look at some of these old regulations."

Alberino said he's old enough to remember town regulations that did not permit stores to be open on Sundays and other out-dated laws.

The PZC agreed as well, and voted 4-1 to hold a public hearing to review this particular zoning regulation regarding tattoo parlors.

The public hearing is scheduled for Monday, April 2 at 7pm at town hall.

The reason for the review, said members of the PZC, is that tattoo parlors fall under adult entertainment services and have rules such as they can't be within 1,000 feet of a day care facility, school, church, convent and/or synagogue. Or "where numbers of minors regularly travel or frequent."

The dilemma, said PZC member Anselmo Delia, is what does the regulation really mean? 

"Should it be considered differently and if so, are we are going to enforce the regulations or not?" he asked.

PZC member Michael Rossi said that the commission must follow the regulations which in essence equates tattoo parlors with adult entertainment.  

"We might need to change these," said Rossi of the regulations. "Right now, if we are to approve this under these regulations, anyone in town opposed to it would have an easy appeal."

Another commission member brought up the fact that a person who spoke against the application at the first public hearing runs a business across the street for school age children.

PZC member Mark Rapuano disagreed noting that the regulation stated the words, “as determined by the commission.” 

"We have the right to determine that this is an area and location that a tattoo parlor can go into," said Rapuano.

Delia said that it was a difficult decision as the applicants are upstanding citizens in the community and that there was a lot of support for the service.

"They would probably do a better job than anyone else for this proposed use," said Delia about the Alberinos.

But soon-to-be tattoo services at the are not in the immediate future.

"I learned a great deal and I feel more prepared to decide than I would have been a month ago," said Delia. "But the nature of it, the special exception, is one where zoning regulations should not be taken too lightly."

The first vote, which began with a motion to approve the application for the tattoo services, was defeated by a vote of two in favor to three against.  Voting in favor was Mark Rapuano and Christine Goupil. Voting against was Michael Rossi, Anselmo Delia and Kirk Carr.

In a second vote, the PZC agreed to hold a public hearing to review and possibly amend the regulations. It passed 4-1, with Carr being the lone dissenter.

Carr did say "the words are clear, if you like them or not it's immaterial.  It is our sworn duty to uphold the rule.  We can change it if we like."

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