P&Z Minutes Dec. 19, 2013

Planning and Zoning Regular Meeting
December 19, 2013 5:30 pm

Attending: Matt Cossalman, Chairman, John Cranor, Ron Self, Marciavee Cossette, John Cranor, Caleb Davis, John Moss. Absent: Bruce Behrman, Steve Shelman. Staff, Dan Studer.

At 5:30 pm Matt Cossalman, Chairman, opened the regular meeting and read through the agenda, and introduced the members of the commission.

First on the agenda, the minutes for November 21, 2013 were accepted with changes to John Moss attendence and correction to spelling noted by Cossalman; motion by Ron Self, second by John Moss; no discussion, the vote was unanimously in favor of the motion.

Applicant for Planning and Zoning Commission Scott Fuller was interviewed. Scott has a background in building/construction and property management. He loves living here and believes it is a nice place to live; the Comprehensive Plan says the values here today should be shared by our children, Scott feels it his responsibility to try to achieve this goal. Planning and zoning is good to have in order to set limits, ie subdivision on railway line, some standards need to be established because many people don't think ahead well enough. Yet this county is good because Oregon, as an example, carry regs. too far. Scott is even tempered, non-confrontational, and willing to listen.

Matt Cossalman began discussion of Comprehensive Plan amendment; the meeting with commissioners went well, and through discussion it seems that the commissioners philosophy matches with the P&Z commissioners.

Cossalman invited public coment and Tim Patton, Naples, ID came forward with his comments. Patton argued that the commission appears to be taking out anything “green”, and during the original process a lot was left out – so now you're taking out more. The comprehensive plan By-Ways section should allow signs to promote local interests, but not everyone should be allowed to put up signs; a small number benefits from the sign but everyone driving and looking at scenery gets impacted.

Cossalman allowed Patton to go on with transfer of development rights (TDR's) in the ordinance, which he regards as against Idaho law. This law was set up to protect riparian areas, ag land, etc. In Boundary County there are no limits to where rights are sent, so it defeats the purpose. There needs to be more control established. There needs to be designated sending and receiving areas.

Patton said that the elimination of language regarding wildlife and all the previously mentioned issues he has points to this being an overall ethics problem. People coming to Boundary County want wild life and the comprehensive plan should talk about it. The direction this commission is going shows a bias and unethical treatment of the comprehensive plan and ordinance.

Patton asked about Chapter 14, elimination of setback distances from water bodies and creeks. Cossalman explained that the federal government establishes those numbers and may change them, which would make the comp plan out of date; and Boundary County isn't set up to enforce federal or state regulations. There was discussion regarding setbacks and what is allowable, ie. can't cause erosion.
Cossalman asked Patton to write down issues with reference chapter and section numbers and submit to the P&Z commission to respond. Cossalman went on with a review of changes made since the consultation meeting with Tevis Hull. Discussion included roads, airport and airport overlay areas. Much of the change was rewording or clarifying what was in the content.

Caleb Davis joined the commission members and Cossalman went on to the public hearing agenda item at 6:33 pm. Cossalman read through the order of proceedings and description of the application for zone map amendment 13-069 by Dennis Shelton. At this time Ron Self removed himself from the commission table indicating because of past knowledge and associations he prefered to step down.

Sheltons opening remarks stated he wanted the zoning to be as it was prior to 2011 when it changed to commercial/industrial. Shelton has parcels he wishes to sell which are well suited for residential development. He also said that although he has 14 parcels, that parcel line adjustments are likely to occur and 8 to 10 residences established on the whole 30+ acres.

Shelton was asked about parcel line adjustments, and why the area is more suitable zoned as rural community commercial? Shelton may make parcels larger and lower the number of parcels without a development permit; and Shelton stated the topography of the land does not suit it well for commercial development.

Cossalman brought up road access. Shelton explained the road is private, allows for fire and ambulance access. There is a gully that narrows to 18 ft. width.

Studer went through his staff report, noting the parcel sizes, and airport overlay area. He discussed the hazard areas west of Shelton's property closer to the airport runway. Included was a map of current zoning. Studer referenced comprehensive plan information for the current and proposed zoning which was given to all commission members. Studer also mentioned attending an airport board meeting regarding this application, and a letter from the airport manager supporting the application proposal with condition that the lighting in the area be downward and not interfere with pilot visibility, and purchasers aware of noise in the area due to aircraft. Studer discussed the Sunrise private road saying that issue was gone over in 2011 when the subdivision was approved by Mike Weland. Also, the FAA is not keen on a road placement south of the airport runway and perpendicular to it, but the topography doesn't allow for a more feasible alternative.

Cossalman opened the hearing to any public in favor of the application. Joel McIntosh of Bonners Ferry came forward. He said the property and lay of the land lends itself to be perfect residential area. The site overlooks the town and valley, and is minutes from town. McIntosh would not like commercial building in this area, and the private road doesn't handle big truck traffic well due to narrow spot in the draw.

Tim Patton, Naples, came forward as uncommitted to say that the area Mr. Shelton is in would be a location he would prefer to see as a receiving area (ie. TDR).

No one came forward in opposition to the application, and Cossalman asked Shelton if he had any closing comments. Shelton indicated he would respond to any questions.

Cossalman asked about the Simple Subdivision in 2011. Shelton indicated he knew no details, but that Mike Weland led him through the process. When asked about previous zoning Sheltons recollection was not clear.
Further questioning by Cossalman did not result in clear answers, and he expressed concern over the legality of the 2011 simple subdivision. Shelton responded that he did as Mr Weland told him to do.

There was no further questions for Shelton; Cossalman closed the public comments and opened discussion with the commission members. There was still some question regarding past zoning of the area, and what is appropriate in the future; Cossalman said that his concern was the subdivision in 2011. Moss and Cranor in discussion concluded that the matter is a separate issue, likely to be determined by the commissioners and legal council. Cossalman clarified that the issue is, does this land better fit the Rural Community Commercial zone than the Commercial Light Industrial zone.

Moss said he felt the area better suited to Rural Residential zone, and the establishment of shops in the area doesn't fit, i.e. strip malls. Cossalman mentioned that the water system in the proposed zone (Rural Community Commercial) would allow for one acre parcel divisions. If the designation were Rural Residential the minimum would be 5 acres, which is less density, and the Shelton parcels would be legal non-conforming parcels.

The members discussed recommendations; Studer read through Section – Approve, Disapprove, Render Considerations. Further discussion lead to the recognition that all areas east and south of the Shelton's property is Residential zone or Rural Residential zone, and not commercial. The members further discussed the private road.

No further discussion Cossalman called for a motion. Moss motion to deny the application (recommend disapproval) because rural community commercial and commercial light industrial are both inappropriate zones for the parcels, and it is more suited for rural residential zoning. The motion was seconded by John Cranor; discussion included whether to include language and add to the motion the question of legal subdivision of parcels in 2011, this was decided against. No further discussion Cossalman called for the vote; the motion carried unanimously.

The members shared discussion with the Shelton's regarding the next steps in the process. They then decided to hold a special workshop January 9, 2014 at 5:30 to discuss the application for comprehensive plan amendment.

The members discussed the last agenda item, applicants to the P&Z commission. The group felt that the currant interested parties are respected, no clear recommendation to the commissioners is forthcoming. It is desirable to have more candidates come forward is the consensus of the group at this time.

At 8:06 pm. Cranor motion to adjoun the meeting, second by Self; no discussion the vote was unanimously affirmative.

Dan Studer

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