The Kanab City Council, in a split vote, decided to adopt Ordinance 6-2-13-O amending the Land Use Ordinance to allow a “tavern” business to operate under a Conditional Use Permit in the city’s downtown commercial 1 (C1) zone.

Valerie Heinz, the proprietor of Laid Back Larry’s vegetarian cafe and coffee house for over five years, had received permission from the Kanab Planning and Zoning Commission to pursue her request to establish a 3.2 percent beer only tavern at her present location.

“The Dog House,” as it would be called, would also serve limited foods and be open only from 4-10 p.m. at the corner of 100 East and 100 South on Hwy 89. There are other establishments along the C1 downtown zone that serve alcohol, but this would be beer only.

Gary McBride, Kanab’s Business and Land Use Coordinator, reported the issue was discussed extensively at the Planning Commission meeting and there were no citizen objections registered, nor were there any at the city council meeting.

When it came to a vote, both for the zone change and then the beer license, presented by Councilman Kirt Carpenter and seconded by Councilman Brent Chamberlain, who voted “aye,” it was opposed by council members Joe B. Wright and Cheryl Brown voting ‘nay.”

Wright and Brown both stated they did not feel it was the type of business that should be allowed in the city, without any further explanation.

The deciding vote was that of Councilman Jim Sorenson, who initially voted “nay,” citing a concern that wording in the ordinance did not offer protection for surrounding neighborhoods in future applications in the C1 zone. Sorenson sits on the planning commission and said both beer drinkers and non-drinkers supported the tavern designation during their review.

After requesting the planning commission place neighborhood protection language in the ordinance, another vote was cast in which Sorenson voted for the ordinance and consent to providing The Dog House with a beer license – pending approval of Heinz’s application with the state. Therefore, the ordinance change passed, and Heinz can continue with her efforts to open a new business.

The Kanab City Municipal Court has not been in operation for over a year now, but the city did not follow the proper procedures to dissolve it, according to a deputy chief attorney with Utah’s Judicial Council. The city officials thought if they did not take action to renew the court’s standing by June 1, 2012, the court would cease existing. One reason the city decided to eliminate the court was the cost of its operation. 

Part of the omission in procedure was not giving official notice to Kane County that the court would be dissolved. To correct this, the city must send an official letter to the county by July 1, in order to have the Judicial Court properly terminated by October 1. After an executive session discussion, the council decided to send the letter.

Amending the Land Use Ordinance was tabled in order to give council members time to review the 32-page document before deciding what changes were needed to make the Site Plan Requirements and Procedures more user friendly.

With a unanimous vote, the council increased the municipal energy use tax rate from 3 percent to 6 percent of delivered value.

During the public comment period, building mural painter Jeff Lewis asked the council if they would consider having he and his wife transform “the plain white city buildings like the library,” by painting scenes of historical significance to Kanab on them. He had approached some businesses in town with the idea and received some positive response. He was thanked for his suggestion.

Councilman Sorenson reported information gathered from the community scoping survey on the direction the council should consider taking with the General Plan and city management is available at the city’s website.  Barry Glazier has been asked to contribute area photographs to the site.

Councilwoman Brown said there was an opening on the city’s Arts Board. Grant money for the skate park is being pursued, and over $1000 was raised at the recent competitive skating event.

Mayor Laycook stated there would be a candidate orientation for those running for city offices in the fall election coming up shortly, and that fuel sales tax revenues were $2000 higher than anticipated.

City Manager Duane Huffman reported over half of the city’s employees opted to go onto the HSA health insurance program.

 He also said rototill asphalt is being placed on Stansfield Dr. in the Ranchos to help preserve the road to the water tank.