In early 2022, Pleasantly Devine Stables sought approval to become an events venue. While waiting and still not hearing back from the Montgomery planning board for seven months, they faced another issue: a zoning law that prevented commercial traffic access to their property.
Pleasantly Devine Stables is located at 97 Maple Avenue in Rock Tavern and is owned by William Devine. The barn on the property is often used for events and other farming activities, so Devine realized he needs a special permit to allow for commercial traffic to get to his property. The zoning law states “No access for other than agricultural or normal residential purposes shall be permitted from Maple Avenue except for that portion within 1,000 feet from NYS Route 17K unless granted a special use permit by the Town Board.”
Since Devine’s property is located outside the 1,000 feet, he needed to obtain this permit.
The hearing took place at a Town of Montgomery Board Meeting where he was met with some backlash. Barbara Troy, a Maple Avenue resident stated her disagreement with this request because of the traffic she believes it will generate.
“A neighbor and I purchased slow signs because of speeding and reckless driving,” said Troy.
She went further and stated Devine hadn’t been following that zoning law since early 2022.
On the other hand, Devine was met with support from Business Council of Greater Montgomery Executive Director Randi Picarello who stated this permit would help support agritourism. “We want to support farmers and they can’t afford to run their farms.”
He also received agreement from his sister-in-law Melissa Doro, who stated that Devine wants to use it for the community and that it is better than a lot of other alternatives.
Devine also spoke, insisting that its only ever 15 to 16 events per year and that the barn is inherently seasonal. He also noted that he has gotten no complaints from police although he does agree with local residents about traffic issues. However he assures residents he will not generate crazy traffic like another business would. “It’s a timed event, it’s not an open restaurant,” said Devine.
Kelly Devine of Pleasantly Devine Stables made a comment about their road to becoming an events venue. “Our application with the planning board was for an events venue site plan approval under agricultural and markets (NYS Agricultural & Markets Law). It’s been since May 6, 2022 and we still have not received comments from the planning board at this time.”
Pleasantly Devine Stables has hosted many events at the barn like the Business Council Of Greater Montgomery Annual Meeting/Mixer. On top of the barn, the property also consists of a farmhouse, fruit trees, fresh maple syrup, some farm animals, soybeans and more.
In the meantime, the board made and passed the motion to give Devine the special use permit, so they’re a step closer.