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BZA MEETING

January 17, 2019

The White County Area Board of Zoning Appeals met Thursday, January 17, 2019, at 6:00 p.m. in the Commissioners’ Meeting Room, Second Floor, White County Government Center, Monticello, Indiana.

Present: Dennis Sterrett, Chris McWhirter, Randy Conwell, Stan Minnick, and Abbey Gross

Also attending were Executive Director Joseph W. Rogers, Board Secretary Sarah Baunach and Area Plan Attorney Abigail Diener

Visitors attending were: Bonnie Woods, Robert McClain, Cindy Fulk, Sue Lottinville, Barbara Echterling, Kyle Lottinville, Judy Einikis, Paul Einikis, Anthony Biasi, David Shook, Debbie Shook, Gayle Hiner

The meeting was called to order by Chairman Dennis Sterrett at 6:00 p.m.

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Minutes and Findings of Fact:

The Meeting Minutes and Finding of Facts for November 15, 2018 were continued.

Reorganization:

Chris McWhirter nominated Dennis Sterrett for Chairman, seconded by Board Member Stan Minnick. The motion was passed and Dennis Sterrett was elected as Chairman.

Board Member Randy Conwell nominated Chris McWhirter for Vice Chairman, seconded by Dennis Sterrett. The motion was passed and Chris McWhirter was elected as Vice Chairman.

Board Member Abbey Gross nominated Sarah Baunach for Board Secretary, seconded by Board Member Stan Minnick. The motion was passed and Sarah Baunach was elected as Board Secretary.

Note: At the introduction of each case hearing, Director Rogers introduced the Staff Report and affiliated documents into the official record of the meeting, to be used as supporting documents for the developing of the Findings of Fact for each hearing.

Special Exception #2989

Executive Director Joe Rogers stated the applicant is requesting to utilize the site (5899 N, Lake Rd 53 W, Monticello) as a Vacation Rental by Owner as defined by the White County Indiana Zoning Control Ordinance. Director Rogers said the subject property is a relative location to amenities and the property’s smaller size is typical of those targeted for use as a VRBO within this community. The applicant has provided a proposal to meet the ADA parking space requirements that are acceptable to the staff. The applicant has also provided the Rules and Regulations posting which the Staff feels satisfies the requirements of the Zoning Ordinance. Director Rogers stated the file includes an appropriate setback waiver from the neighboring property owners as allowed by Subsection 3.16.9 of the White County Indiana Zoning Control Ordinance. Director Rogers also stated the applicant has provided a certification of compliance to various requirements for operating a VRBO within White County. Director Rogers stated the staff has no concerns over the applicant’s proposal. However, Director Rogers recommends the Board to attach the following condition to their consideration prior to issuance of a Special Exception permit; The staff is to conduct an on-site inspection of the property within 6 months of the vote of approval to insure it is in compliance with all requirements listed in Subsection 3.16.9 of the White County Indiana Zoning Control Ordinance. The Board members saw no issues with the condition. Board Member Chris McWhirter made a motion to attach the condition, seconded by Board Member Stan Minnick.

At that time, Director Rogers went over the photos he had taken of the subject site. Once he was done going over the photos, Chairman Dennis Sterrett asked if there was anyone representing the special exception. Applicant Robert McClain stepped to the podium and stated that he was there to represent the property owner, Jayne McClain. Robert wanted to point out that in the pictures there is a driveway and a circle driveway. He also stated the four lots in the area are owned by him and Jayne McClain, which one of the properties is already a VRBO, 5937 N Lake Rd 53 W. Robert stated that VRBO was approved in May 2018, Special Exception #2975. Robert informed the Board that he lives in one of the properties and is there all the time. Chairman Dennis Sterrett asked if the parking is in the circle area of the drive and Robert informed him that there is an asphalt area that will be for the handicap parking and other parking. Robert also informed the Board that he plans to have a sidewalk to the house and more parking area asphalted in front of the garage, which he has submitted the plans with his application. He indicated that he has already received a quote from Xtreme Contractors located in Reynolds, IN. The board had no more questions for Robert McClain.

Next to speak was Barbara Echterling, 5863 N Echo Lane Ct., Monticello, owner of Echo Lane Estates. She stated that the subject property is on the west side of her property. She informed the board that she wasn’t aware of the Special Exception #2975 at the May 2018 meeting and had just found out about #2989. Barbara stated she would have been at the May meeting had she known about it. She inquired as to why she was not sent a letter regarding petition #2975 and Director Rogers informed her the standard that is used by the Area Plan office is the same as the state statute and as long as our office contacts the two lots or an eighth of a mile from the subject property, whichever is less restrictive.

Barbara stated that she is concerned because rental properties cannot guarantee what is going to happen when it is being rented. She is also concerned because she does not want people coming onto her property and does not want the hassle of calling the county authorities. She said she is retired now and does not want or need the headaches. She asked if the renters would be allowed to bring campers or set up pop-up tents

Barbara informed the Board that the driveway is very small and her husband has replaced it twice.

Cindy Fulk, 5853 N Lake Rd 52 W., stepped to the podium to speak against the request. Ms. Fulk echoed the concerns of Ms. Eichterling.

Sue Lottinville, 5987 N West Shafer Dr., spoke against the request. Ms, Lottinville is against the request as there is an easement that runs through her land for the subject property. Ms. Lottinville stated that she believes this was a residential easement and was not intended for commercial use, but she has not had a chance to research this. Ms. Lottinville also reiterated the previous concerns of potential trespassing, disturbances, and property damage. Mr. McClain stepped to the podium to address the concerns presented by the remonstrators. When there were no more questions or concerns from the Board or Audience, Dennis Sterrett instructed Attorney Diener to pass out the ballots.

After tabulating the ballots, Chairman Dennis Sterrett read the following results into the record: Special Exception #2989 - 5 Votes cast; 5 to grant, 0 to deny; Petition Granted.

Variance #2990

Executive Director Rogers provided the Board with an overview of the variance requests, reviewed the Staff report and supplemental information. He then displayed for the Board and the audience as series of photos he had taken at the site showing the area subject to the request along with the surrounding area of the property and the neighboring properties as well.

Director Rogers reviewed the specific request of the applicant; i.e., a variance from the 19’ height limitation to which accessory structures are subject in an L-1, Lake District, seeking an allowance of 24’, a 5’ variance.

Director Rogers reviewed the Staff’s analysis of the site area including road conditions, travel patterns and developmental density.

Gayle Hiner, the applicant’s representative and contractor spoke on behalf of the petition. Mr. Hiner indicated that the proposed construction could be accomplished with a 22’ height allowance and offered to reduce the applicant’s request to reflect such. Board member McWhirter motioned to have the Board modify the request from a 5’ variance or 24 foot height allowance, to a 3’ variance resulting in a 22’ height allowance. Board member Minnick seconded the motion. The Board voted unanimously to modify the request from a 24’ height allowance to a 22’ height allowance.

Mr. Hiner then proceeded to show pictures of the site and surrounding area addressing various aspects of the request including the purpose of the request as well as the proposed constructions impact on neighbors and neighboring properties.

Various citizens spoke at the meeting all voicing objections to the request. Those speaking against the variance were:

Anthony Biasi, neighbor to the south, Bonnie Woods, Paul Einikis, Dave Shook and Judy Einikis.

A general discussion pursued between the applicant, the remonstrators and the Board members concerning the various issues which had been brought up by the public. These objections were:

- Infringement on neighbor’s property to the South (Mr. Einikis claimed the additional height allowance would give occupants of the new structure a direct site-line into one of his home’s bedrooms)

- Would add to congestion of lot and neighborhood

- Was unnecessary since the petitioners already have out buildings on their lot

- Would be used in conjunction with the petitioner’s business vs the residential use of the lot

- Is out of character of the surrounding area.

The Board allowed open discussion between Mr. Hiner and the remonstrators concerning each objection.

The Board brought the discussion to a close and directed attorney Diener to pass out ballots.

After tabulating the ballots, Chairman Dennis Sterrett read the following results into the record: Variance #2990 - 5 Votes cast; 2 to grant, 3 to deny; Petition DENIED.

New Business - None

There being no further business, Board Member Abbey Gross motioned to adjourn the meeting, with a second from Board Member Stan Minnick. Motion carried, meeting adjourned at 6:51 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

__________________________

Joseph W. Rogers, Executive Director

White County Area Plan Commission

__________________________

Sarah Baunach, Secretary

Area Board of Zoning Appeals

Document Prepared By: White County Area Plan Executive Director Joseph W. Rogers, “I AFFIRM, UNDER THE PENALTIES FOR PERJURY THAT I HAVE TAKEN REASONABLE CARE TO REDACT EACH SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER IN THIS DOCUMENT, UNLESS REQUIRED BY LAW.”

__________________________

Joseph W. Rogers, Executive Director

Area Board of Zoning Appeals