Southern Utah News Articles
Top Stories for January 20, 2010
Bob Russell retires from Kane County Land Use Authority
The monthly meeting of the Kane County Land Use Authority was held on January 13, 2010. Chairman Jim Baker approached the subject of standard parliamentary procedures, suggesting a meeting of the members and possibly other county agencies that would be interested in defining and enforcing these procedures.
Chairman Baker stated he would like to make some “in-roads” with Kanab City regarding a representative from Kane County to be active on the city’s planning commission.
There are three positions open on the panel this year. In a surprise announcement, Bob Russell said, “this meeting would be his last one.”
Chairman Baker noted that Bob is an “institution,” contributing a wealth of knowledge and experience to the panel. Bob has been a volunteer member of the Land Use Authority, aka Planning and Zoning Commission, for years. When asked when he first started, he replied, “I can’t remember the exact year, but it was a long time ago.”
I know he was a member in the mid-nineties, as I used to sit next to him. Bob also stated he was a county commissioner for five years. Bob Russell will not be retiring from serving the community, but will be devoting all his time and energy to the Lions Club.
Commissioner Daniel Hulet asked Bob if he would attend the next meeting.
Members of the Land Use Authority are appointed by the county commissioners. Hulet recommended newly-elected Kanab City Council member Jim Sorenson to fill one position, thereby continuing the open communication the Land Use Authority has developed with the city planners.
Land Use Authority Administrator Gary Smith stated there is an application on file for one of the vacancies.
Administrative #1: John and Cynthia Miller submitted a conditional use permit application to continue the construction of a 16’ x 16’ outbuilding on their property in Duck Creek Village. Building Authority member Ryan Maddux stated the original permit did not take into account for the building to be constructed so close to the property line, boundary line and set-back ordinances. Maddux stated issuing a conditional use permit is a legal avenue for the Building Authority to take action in response to a complaint. Application was recommended to the county commissioners for their approval, upon conditions set by the Building Authority.
Administrative #2: Nick and Carol Ramsay submitted a conditional use permit application for lots #45 and 46, a of total 2.55 acres of Vermillion Cliff Estates, to be used as a terminal, parking, and maintenance facility. The current zoning is designated as commercial. The property is adjacent to the Hansen Stone Quarries, located East of Kanab on Highway 89.
Chairman Baker stated the use of the properties in question was basically considered to be a “pretty heavy industrial use in a primarily residential subdivision.” It is a non-conforming use and the Land Use Authority is trying to come up with a way to make it work. In 1965, when Vermillion Cliffs Estates was approved, it included the commercial zoning along Highway 89. The “commercial zone” was not fully vested for the current use.
Ramsay explained when he purchased the property, it was his understanding it was commercial and had been used in that manner for years. In his business, he has to have a place to store trailers that have been in an accident. They are at the discretion of the insurance companies as to how long they will be at the site, possibly 30 to 60 days.
The staff of the Land Use Authority has received complaints from the neighbors as to the unsightly condition of the property. Ramsay stated they have made an effort to clean up the properties and will continue to do so.
Baker stated what the Land Use Authority is trying to do is balance the rights of the commercial use against the rights of the residential property owners. Baker explained that counties have formed planning commissions as provided for in state law to interpret the law and try to provide workable solutions for both sides.
The panel members and Ramsay discussed possible solutions, such as fencing to stop the debris from blowing, and planting trees or shrubs along the northeast and west sides of the property. Even though the meeting was not a public hearing, a member of the audience asked if he could make a comment. He is a neighbor and voiced concerns about the situation, making mention of the visual aspect of the entrance to the subdivision. The bales of hay were not enhancing the look of the property and the scrapping of trailers, etc. were part of the problem.
The application was tabled until the next meeting, by which time mutually acceptable use conditions can hopefully be worked out.
Bob Russell commented on how much he appreciated and thanked the gentlemen, Mr. Ramsay and the neighbor, in the positive way they handled and discussed the situation, without tempers getting out of hand and derogatory remarks made to each other and the panel.
Administrative #3: Parcel joinder request for Stephen and Debra Bailey Trust to consolidate Lots 24 and 25 of Zion Mountain Estates for assessment purposes. Request recommended to the Kane County Commission for approval.
Administrative #4: Request for parcel/line adjustment for Bruce Bullock Trust Parcels 8-9-30-2, 8-9-33-1, 8-9-31-2A and 8-9-31-2. Request recommended to the Kane County Commission for approval.
Before adjourning the meeting, Chairman Baker addressed the panel members on a list of concerns he has in the form of a letter he drafted to the members regarding proper decorum at meetings and the importance of following Robert’s Rules of Order as a protection for the county.
Reporter’s note: Bob Russell, you will be missed.