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BZA MEETING

October 17, 2019

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

Present: Dennis Sterrett, Randy Conwell, Stan Minnick, Abbey Gross and Jeff Guingrich

Also attending were Executive Director Joseph W. Rogers, Board Secretary Erika Martinez and Area Plan Attorney Makenzie Martin

Visitors attending were: Jamie Keigher and Corey Keigher

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

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Variance #3003 update:

Upon Chairman Sterrett’s request, Director Rogers stated that the Board, on September 19, 2019, made the approval of variance #3003 contingent on the Staff obtaining two clarifications of the submitted survey and assurance that those clarifications would not have significant effect on the variance request. The first clarification being the need for the Staff to clarify the purpose of the easement located east of the proposed development and assuring that any effects of the easement’s use or restrictions would not impact the essence of the variance request. The second clarification being to account for the 30’ discrepancy between the width of the lot call out on the survey compared to the associated subdivision plat and, again, assuring that this resolution would not have any effect on the variance request. Director Rogers informed the Board that the easement is a NIPSCO easement and that the office does not object to construction that abuts the easement as long as the construction does not go onto the easement. The applicant was advised that the porch shown on the survey will have to be removed or have NIPSCO terminate the easement or give approval to place the porch on the easement. The 30 extra feet came out of the east side of the lot and did not affect any of the relative measurements related to the request.

Minutes:

There was a motion by Abbey Gross and a second by Stan Minnick to approve the meeting minutes and finding of facts dated September 19, 2019 as written. Motion carried unanimously.

Note: At the introduction of each case hearing, Director Rogers entered all documents provided to the Board in their pre-meeting packets, the Staff Report and all other file documents into the official record of the meeting. All documents entered into the record along with all hearing testimony and record ballets will be used in establishing the Findings of Fact for each hearing.

Variance #3004

Director Rogers stated he will be representing the county and that the request is made by the White County Commissioners and authorized by the White County Redevelopment Commission on property owned by the White County Redevelopment Commission.

The property was rezoned to B-2 for the purpose of constructing the county highway garage campus. The county highway garage is a non-identified use because county specific usages are not normally identified in the use chart (Appendix A of the White County Indiana Zoning Control Ordinance). In reviewing the conditions that were anticipated for this site, its most similar and equivalent use, required a B-2 zoning. Early on in the permit process, the Staff identified that many of the storage buildings were going to be designed with heights beyond the 19’ height limitation for accessory structures stipulated in Appendix B of the WCIZCO. The additional height needs are basically a function of the equipment and materials the county highway department has to use. To allow normal activities, the county highway department requires buildings to store large amounts of materials and equipment that need to be protected from the weather. Also, the ability to access the material with dump trucks and other large equipment, and to allow for maintenance of the vehicles/equipment that require to be elevated during repair operations.

The Staff is suggesting the Board consider a 41’ height to peak allowance to apply to the entire parcel to avoid multiple variance requests for any future expansion since it is the use of the site that creates the need for additional building heights. Director Rogers stated he would like the Board to consider attaching a condition that for every foot over the 19’ current max an additional foot be added to the setback from the property lines. With the additional foot added to the properties setback it would prevent tall buildings from being near the property lines. This is a common practice in A-1, A-2, RR, I-1 and I-2 zoned properties and not normally found in a B-2. But with the unique nature of the use, the Staff believes this condition would be appropriate.

Director Rogers stated if the Board chooses not to adapt a height limit for the parcel than each building would need to be considered individually; which would result in a building height request for a patcher storage facility of 26’, a plow storage building of 28’, a heated storage facility of 28’, a cold storage building of 29’ and a salt barn building of 41’.

Director Rogers then displayed for the Board and the audience a series of photos he had taken at the site showing the area subject to the request along with the surrounding area to the property.

There was a motion by Abbey Gross and a second by Jeff Guingrich to allow a height maximum of 41’ for the lot and that any required setback from a property line be adjusted by 1’ for every foot over the current 19’ height limitation for any new building or addition. Motion carried unanimously.

There being no citizens in the audience to speak in favor or against the request, Attorney Martin passed out the ballots.

After tabulating the ballots, Chairman Dennis Sterrett read the following results into the record:

Variance #3004 – 5 votes cast; 5 to grant; 0 to deny;

Petition GRANTED

Variance #3006

Director Rogers stated the applicant requests a variance from the developmental standards (Appendix B) of the White County Indiana Zoning Control Ordinance to construct a detached garage. The current setbacks for an A-1 District are 30’ front, 4’ side and 4’ rear. The subject site is bordered along 3 property lines by a road, requiring a 30’ setback from the north, west, and south property lines.

Director Rogers stated the owner indicated a need to have a building in which to store a personal water craft and other personal items. To place a boat in the proposed structure, the boat would have to be backed in from the road making the building overhead door location critical. Moving the building further north to meet the setback requirements then forces the door to be on the end of the building which increases the difficulty of maneuvering the boat into the proposed facility.

Director Rogers stated the Staff recommends the applicant be prevented from creating a driveway access off East Shafer Drive unless the property owner first comes back before the Board and receives approval. Right now, there is no intention to put a driveway off East Shafer Drive; however, this intention could change in the future and if it did, the Staff would have safety and other concerns due to entrance space limitations, traffic speeds and counts off of East Shafer Drive and the potential proximity to the intersection of East Shafer Drive and Elmer Girtz Drive; which, in the opinion of the Staff, would warrant a prior review by this Board.. Formally adopting this condition would prevent a driveway from being built without appropriate review.

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

Corey Keigher, owner, and Jamie Keigher stepped to the podium to represent the request. Mrs. Keigher presented the Board with a letter from Barbara J. Broedel in which she states she supports the variance request. Mr. Keigher stated that there is a sewer grinder on the property which prevents the garage being moved back the 30’ required and still allowing efficient access to the garage doors.

There was a motion by Abbey Gross and a second by Randy Conwell to restrict access from East Shafer Drive and requiring any future driveway to receive Board approval prior to construction. Motion carried unanimously.

There being no other citizens in the audience to speak in favor or against the request, Attorney Martin passed out the ballots.

After tabulating the ballots, Chairman Dennis Sterrett read the following results into the record:

Variance #3006– 5 votes cast; 5 to grant; 0 to deny;

Petition Granted

Other Business

2020 Meeting Schedule

Director Rogers stated the Board received a copy of the scheduled meeting for 2020 and asked the Board if there are any objection to the schedule. The Board stated they had no objections with the meeting schedule.

Dimensional and Non-dimensional requests

Director Rogers informed the Board that with a variance which is generally a dimensional developmental standard request the applicant is required to submit a variance survey or certified engineered drawings before the application is officially received. Director Rogers informed the Board that they will not always receive a survey when someone is requesting a non-dimensional variance and wants the Board to be aware of that so that they would not be surprised when a non-dimensional request is presented to the Board minus a survey.

Interpretation

Director Rogers stated that the county’s ordinance, when adopted in 2008, limited driveway widths to 30’ and that the office had run into problems with that width when it came to commercial driveways. The ordinance was then changed to allow for a 40’driveway width. The office has always interpreted the width restriction to be the dimension limitation required at the right of way line because the office does not regulate outside of the right of way. Director Rogers stated that the problem the office runs into on a regular basis is that the throat/apron ends up encroaching past the right of way line. Section 8.6.2-B states no driveways which crosses a public right of way shall exceed a width of 30’ except in those cases where one entrance and two exit lanes are needed for traffic management than the width can go to 40’. The office has interpreted that to mean that at the right of way line, the driveway width is maxed out at 30’ or 40’. The office is regularly confronted with people that capture the throats and the throats go into the property and they are wider than 30’ at the right of way line but taper back down to the 30’. Director Rogers asked the Board if they are in agreement with his interpretation that the 30’ or 40’ restriction is at the right of way line or, if not, should he be making some type of allowance for throats/aprons of the driveway to exceed 30’ at the right of way line than tapering down to 30’.

A general discussion pursued between Director Rogers, Chairman Dennis Sterrett, Jeff Guingrich, Abbey Gross and Stan Minnick about Director Rogers’ driveway interpretation. The Board stated they agreed with Director Rogers’ interpretation that the driveways 30’ or 40’ width is measured at the road right of way.

There being no further business, Abbey Gross motioned to adjourn the meeting, with a second from Stan Minnick. Motion was passed and meeting adjourned at 6:53 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

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Joseph W. Rogers, Executive Director

White County Area Plan Commission

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Prepared by: Erika Martinez

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.”

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Erika Martinez

Secretary - Area Board of Zoning Appeals