Roslyn Harbor passes lawn height, sports court amendments

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The Roslyn Harbor Board of Trustees on Tuesday evening. (Photo by Teri West)

The Roslyn Harbor Board of Trustees passed two village code amendments Tuesday night – one that regulates lawn grass height and a second that amends how sports courts are regulated.

The grass height amendment limits lawn grass height to six inches.

It would not apply to a small section of a lawn that the owner specifically wants to keep overgrown, said Deputy Mayor and Trustee Sandy Quentzel.

“We’re not trying to over-regulate here. We’re just trying to make sure people take care of their lawns,” she said.

The second amendment changes “tennis court” in the “Definitions” section of the code to the more general “sports court.”

Since the last board meeting, references to fences in the definition were eliminated as part of the amendment.

“Those were really left over to when we were regulating tennis courts,” said village counsel Peter. P. MacKinnon.

No residents attended the meeting to speak at the public hearings before the board voted on the amendments.

The board will hold a public hearing next month about an amendment to regulate home pools. The amendment currently says that pools installed or replaced as of Jan. 1 require surrounding screening.

On Tuesday, the board continued discussion about an amendment intended to regulate how much of a lot must be natural rather than hardscape.

Village code currently defines lot coverage as the “percentage of the total lot area covered by impervious surfaces,” but excludes surfaces such as gravel from being considered impervious.

That allows residents to add more non-natural development than the board wants, MacKinnon said.

“We have property owners that instead of limiting it to 25 or 30 percent are literally covering their property up to 50, 60 percent with hardscape,” MacKinnon said.

The amendment should seek to limit residents’ ability to do so, perhaps by redefining what is considered impervious, he said.

The village board also granted MacKinnon permission to draft ratios for the maximum percentage of non-natural surfaces allowed on both the full lot and just the front lawn.

The one other law the trustees discussed was regulating dumpsters and pods, which residents often use for construction.

The board is seeking to regulate how long such materials can remain on village properties. MacKinnon suggested that the matter be split into two laws to create separate maximum usages for pods and dumpsters.

“For the dumpster we don’t want to encourage people to have it for a 30-day or a 60-day period,” he said. “You really want a much shorter duration.”

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