County to update housing
R.V. temporary housing, small parcels for country homes, building
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[March 08, 2016]
- On Wednesday, March 2, 2016 the Planning and Zoning Committee met
to discuss new language for an R.V. Ordinance, lower acreage for
residential zoning, and the need to set up building codes and
standards for rural residences.
At the February Planning and Zoning meeting, the committee
discussed whether to add new sections to the R.V. Ordinance and
dwelling standards. Zoning Officer Will D'Andrea has been working on
crafting new language for the ordinance.
D'Andrea said he is proposing some amendments to the ordinance on
recreational vehicles and the definition of a dwelling. D'Andrea
said recreational vehicles will be added to a list of what is not a
dwelling. The ordinance will have a definition of an R.V. as a
temporary and not a permanent residence. D'Andrea said the R.V.
would need to be at least ten feet from another dwelling.
D'Andrea said he wants to add language to the section on building
permits allowing an R.V. to be used as a temporary living unit for
people rebuilding after a fire or disaster. The use of an R.V. as a
residence shall cease after construction is completed.
Committee member Gene Rohlfs asked whether the ordinance would
prevent people from living in an R.V. during the construction of a
Committee member Kevin Bateman said it would just prevent people
from using the R.V. as a permanent residence.
Committee member Chuck Ruben said using the terms "due to fire or
disaster would prevent people from staying in an R.V. during new
home construction. Ruben said adding the words "or a person
constructing a new home" would allow the R.V. to be used as a
D'Andrea said the maximum length for the use of the R.V. as a
dwelling shall be six months to a year. He said for longer time
periods, people would need approval of the Planning and Zoning
Committee, which could extend the time length if the need for such
continuance is demonstrated.
Ruben said one year seems reasonable. Bateman said at the end one
year, there should be a major structure standing. He said after that
time, the board should choose how long to allow for an extension.
D'Andrea said the committee should also consider whether the zoning
administrator would also require appropriate health department
permits for water supply and sewage disposal as part of the
condition of the permit. He said not all counties require that since
it is a temporary situation.
Bateman said he would like to have that section in there so people
are not just dumping sewage on the ground. Ruben said people will
often drive the R.V. to a campground to dump the sewage and refill
the water supply then come back. Both agreed the health department
should be checking it.
Committee member Dave Blankenship said, since insurance companies
often put people up in rental houses or hotels after fires or storm
damage, he questions whether some of the rules are really needed.
Bateman and committee member Emily Davenport both said keeping such
rules in the ordinance avoids problems.
Bateman motioned they move the ordinance forward after the rewrites.
It will go before the Logan County Zoning Board of Appeals in
Lower acreage residential zoning
The Committee next discussed lowering the acreage requirements for
residential zoning. This topic was originally presented at the
February meeting by Kevin Bateman and Dave Blankenship.
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Bateman said he feels changing the requirements from five acres to two means
that more people would be able to afford to build on what is still a decent
sized property. D'Andrea said a Country Homes Ordinances allows for one acre
lots to be sold. There still has to be 200 feet of frontage for the lot width.
County Engineer Bret Aukamp said if they change the ordinance to allow less than
five acres, possible drainage issues and problems need to be considered.
Jared Brown of the Logan County Farm Bureau said drainage could even affect
D'Andrea said that the ordinance that lots should be at least five acres has
been in place since 1974. One section of the ordinance provides for exceptions.
This section allows for "Lots on tracts of less than five (5) acres if approved
through the Conditional Use Procedure, and if proven by the petitioner that the
parcel is not well suited for agriculture and will not adversely affect
adjoining agricultural uses, or that the parcel was created by the acquisition
of a public right-of-way and construction of a public street or highway."
Bateman said for now he just wants to strike the wording "is not well suited for
agriculture." He said a farmer who wants to sell farmland to someone wanting to
build should be able to do that.
Bateman said leaving the wording to "will not adversely affect the agriculture"
should be left in. Ruben said that wording could be helpful to farmers.
D'Andrea said these changes will be presented to the Zoning Board of Appeals at
the same public hearing as the R.V. Ordinance.
The Planning and Zoning Committee is looking at establishing Building Codes and
Standards for Rural Residences. D'Andrea said he has been looking at a 2010
document with questions to be addressed for building codes. There was discussion
on how to enforce codes and whether a building inspector should be brought in. ,
Ruben observed that part of the set-up of rules is that there needs to be a
means of enforcement.
Committee chairman Pat O'Neill asked D'Andrea his thoughts on the issue.
D'Andrea said setting up codes makes sense because it is a public health and
safety issue. He said, "I have not worked anywhere that did not have some kind
of enforcement mechanism for inspections."
The committee will continue discussion on building codes in upcoming meetings.
The next Planning and Zoning Committee meeting will be Wednesday, April 6, 2016.