Commissioners recommend permit for kennel

Published 10:10 am Monday, April 17, 2017

Three public hearings dominated the meeting of the Southampton Planning Commission on Thursday, starting with a request for a conditional use permit to operate a commercial kennel, Queenie Swamp Kennels LLC, on 3.25 acres at 22092 Southampton Parkway.

Kyle Prendergast, the applicant, told the commissioners that he’s “just a hobbyist,” and isn’t planning on creating a boarding kennel.

“It’s a tax advantage to me to operate like this,” he said.

Prendergast later mentioned that the dogs would all be female beagles for field trials.

There are no houses within 700 to 800 feet of his property, and there’s been no feedback from neighbors.

The members all recommended approval of the conditional use permit, and the matter will go before the Board of Supervisors in May.


The second hearing was a zoning map amendment by Jonathan Bowen of 18170 Fourth St., Sedley. He requested a zoning map amendment from R-1, Residential to CA-2, Conditional Agriculture.

Bowen, who’s active in the Air Force and works at Langley AFB, said he chose Sedley for the size of house, amount of land and that it was advertised as horse property. He understood before arriving that there were issues about horses and the previous owner.

Told of complaints about the horses Bowen was keeping, he asked for time to make a decision. Meanwhile, the horses were moved to Franklin.

Bowen came before the board to, in his words, “make it right” and be allowed to use the land for his animals.

Several neighbors spoke against the amendment request, beginning with Robin Oldham Nelson. Her concerns include that the land where the horses would be kept is often wet, and that the water drains toward Hubs Peanuts as well as where she would soon be digging a well.

She’s concerned that as an active serviceman, whose home address is Alaska — she asked him publicly — that he’s a transient and that he’ll get his permit and then leave.

The odor of the horses, specifically their waste, is another concern expressed by Nelson and other speakers, including Cheryl Stepp.

She said her property butts up against his, and had heard Bowen say he was told by the former property owner told he could have horses.

“He should have checked into that,” she said, also adding that the land where the horses would be kept is extremely wet.

Another speaker, Stephen Pierce, said he lives beside Bowen. He too is concerned about the smell and the ground being very soft.

“Drainage from his property comes through mine. It’s not something I want to live with,” said Pierce. “I’ve got to speak my voice.”

Chairman Michael Drake admitted he doesn’t know a lot about horses, but recalled that for health reasons they can’t stand in wetland all the time because that can have an adverse effect on their hooves.

Somebody on the panel confirmed that statement.

Following discussion, the panel chose not to recommend the application to the supervisors.

“It’s wet and too many people are against it,” said commissioner Dr. Alan Edwards.


The third hearing concerned five applications for alley vacations in Sedley. Drake said he’s impressed everyone signed to waiver.

As explained in the overview, the alleys in question surround 18170 Fourth St., home of the aforementioned Bowen. None of the alleys have ever been developed and the abutting property owners use them as part of their property. Bowen initiated the request to vacate the alleys surrounding his properties. He contacted each of the abutting property owners to seek their approval, and to let each indicate whether they wanted their “half” of the alley, or if they wished to relinquish their portion to him.

Should the request to vacate the alleys be approved, each property owner that receives a portion of the alley, including Bowen, will need to have prepared and recorded a new survey showing their lot as having been increased with the vacated portion of the alley. The abutting property owners have agreed and this is what each has chosen.

The board had no discussion and agreed to recommend approval to the supervisors.

In unfinished business, the commissioners reviewed the site plan of Pods C, D, E and F for the Southampton Solar project. The panel voted to recommend approval, and the supervisors will examine the matter at their meeting on Monday, April 24.