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The White County Board of Zoning Appeals met on Thursday, April 15, 2010 at 7:30 p.m. in the Commissioners’ Meeting Room, Second Floor, County Building, Monticello, Indiana.

Members attending were: Gerald Cartmell, David Scott, Charles Mellon, David Hall and Carl Hites, Jr. Absent: None. Also attending were Attorney Ben Diener, Director Joseph Rogers, Secretary Gayle Rogers and Security Officer Ben Woodhouse.

Visitors attending were: Gary Freymiller, Bill and Gretchen Roy, Stuart Gutwein, Brian Furrer, Stacey Petrovas, Glenn Ruemler, Eileen Ruemler, Les Thurston, Connie M. Neininger

The meeting was called to order by Chairman Gerald Cartmell. Charlie Mellon motioned to accept the minutes of March 18, 2010 as written. A second followed by Shaker Hites. The motion passed unanimously (5-0). The first order of business was the new proposed ballot for Variances and for Special Exception Uses. The old (current) ballots were passed out to each board member and the new (proposed) ballots were handed out also. Director Rogers explained that the new ballots conform with both state statute and our Ordinance, the old ballots do not. The new ballots are more flexible as some questions can be answered negatively and the petition can still be granted based on the weight the member gives to each answer, and vice versa. Shaker Hites requested more time to consider the new ballots. It was so moved. The ballots will be continued until the next BZA meeting.

The next order of business was #10 Appeal – Les Thurston Violation for setbacks for a storage shed. Joe gave the history of the violation. The shed, for the past 13 years has sat three feet from the side property line. The neighboring property owner on that line complained, not because it bothered him but because a different neighbor had complained about his shed. Since he had to move his, be decided that his neighbor should have to move his also. Joe further told the board that to move the shed would mean to destroy it as it has sunk into the ground over the years. Joe also mentioned that Mr. Thurston has been very cooperative throughout this matter. Mr. Thurston was present. He explained that he would move the shed but can not due to financial constraints. If the shed was destroyed in the move, he could not afford to replace it. He is currently focused on keeping his home out of foreclosure and paying medical bills. Director Rogers requested the board table the appeal to the next meeting. It was so moved by Shaker Hites and seconded by Dave Scott and unanimously approved.

#2837 William & Gretchen Roy;

Violation: None



Director Rogers showed photos and gave the board an explanation of the request. He emphasized that this is a corner lot and the proposed porch not only meets the vision clearance triangle required by Ordinance, but exceeds the requirement by at least six feet. It does not come nearly as close to the sidewalk as the other homes in the area.


Bill and Gretchen Roy were present to represent the petition. They submitted a letter of support signed by six neighbors. Bill stated the current porch is six feet wide, the proposed porch is six and one-half feet wide and wraps around one side of the house. The foundation will be stamped cement with a stamped cement sidewalk to the garage. Dave Scott motioned to vote on the request. Dave Hall seconded. Result: five votes cast; 4 grant; 1 deny.

Findings of Fact

1. The variance requested does not essentially alter the character of the surrounding area. 5-0

2. The granting of this variance will not be injurious to the public health, safety, morals and general welfare of the community. 5-0

3. The use and value of the area adjacent to the property included in the variance request will not be affected in a substantially adverse manner. 5-0

4. The granting of the variance is necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a substantial property right possessed by other property owners in the same vicinity and district but which is denied to the property in question. 5-0

5. The strict application of the terms of the zoning ordinance will result in practical difficulties in the use of the property, provided that the situation is not self-imposed or that the need for the development standard variance is not based on a perceived reduction of, or restriction on, economic gain. 4-1

6. The granting of a variance would be a minimal departure from the strict application of the provisions of the zoning ordinance. In other words, the variance will be the minimum necessary to permit a reasonable use of the land and building. 5-0





#2838 Bio Town Ag;

That part of the NW Section 28, T27N, R4W, Honey Creek Township, White County, Indiana, containing 10.322 acres; known as 476 W 100N, Reynolds.




A Special Exception Use to build a manure digester to process manure for the purpose of reducing odor, reducing volume, and capturing methane gas to run engines to generate electricity, allowed in an A-1 zoning district by Special Exception granted by the BZA. 

Director Rogers described the request. He also told the board that on June 19, 2008 a Special Exception Use was granted to the applicant’s father for this same purpose on a different parcel. The applicant wishes to move the location of the digester northwest of the original location which puts it further from the edge of the Town of Reynolds.

Brian Furrer was present along with his attorney, Stu Gutwein to answer questions from the board. Brian assured the board that truck traffic would decrease; there would be a 90% reduction in hog manure and a 50% reduction in cow manure; excess methane gas (not captured) will be burned off rather than released into the atmosphere; the three all internal combustion spark fired engines will produce minimal noise; he has already secured a drainage permit from the White County Drainage Board; he will operate the dryer at 100 degrees all but the last day when it will run at 160 degrees for 24 hours to destroy pathogens; he will be strictly regulated by the EPA and IDEM. Stu Gutwein reminded the board that they are strictly looking to move the digester to a more desirable location for everyone.

Connie Neininger, White County Economic Development Commission Director informed the board that the public is aware of Bio Town Ag’s intentions not only through word of mouth, but also through newspaper articles published in March of 2010. She also mentioned other bio renewable resources the county utilizes such as dams, wind farms, algae wheel, waste management methane and now, this digester. The EDC strongly supports such activity.

Gary Freymiller, Director of WISER (Western Indiana Sustainable Energy Research) spoke his group’s support of the project.

Glenn Ruemler lives ¼ mile southwest of the proposed location and stepped forward to voice his and his wife’s support.

Stacey Petrovas of Soil Solutions said his group also supports this effort.


Dave Scott moved to vote with a second by Shaker Hites.

Result: Five votes cast; 4 grant; 1 deny

Findings of Fact

1 Appendix A of the Zoning Ordinance does authorize the special exception for this use in this zoning district. 5-0

2 The requirements and development standards for the requested use as prescribed by the Zoning Ordinance will be met. 5-0

3 Granting the special exception will not subvert the general purposes served by the Ordinance. 5-0

4 Granting the special exception will not permanently injure other property or uses in the same district because of:

a. Traffic generation. 4-1; Extra material brought in & extra traffic not known what this material is

b. Noise production. 5-0

c. Becoming hazardous or disturbing to neighboring uses. 5-0

d. Destruction, loss, or damage of a natural, scenic, or historic feature of major importance. 5-0

e. Becoming detrimental to the economic welfare of the community. 5-0


As there was no further business, the meeting adjourned at 9:00 pm.



Respectfully submitted,



Gayle E. Rogers, Secretary

Area Board of Zoning Appeals




Joseph W. Rogers, Director

White County Area Plan Commission

Document Prepared By: Gayle E. Rogers, White County Area Plan




Front setback variance to replace the existing porch with a wrap-around porch. The required front setback is 30 feet. They are requesting a front setback on the north (Harrison St.) of 17’ and an 18’ front setback on the east (Third St.).
Lot 1 in Block 5, James C Reynolds 3rd Addition to the City of Monticello, Indiana, commonly described as 601 W. Harrison Street.