VOL. 17 ISSUE NO. 4   | JANUARY 26 – FEBRUARY 1, 2011


Planning commission begins review of revised zoning ordinance

Sahr suggested making mounted shooting a stand-alone item subject to a special use permit

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reg monachino and dan baxleyDuring its first meeting of 2011, the planning commission unanimously reelected Dan Baxley (r) as chairman and Reg Monachino as vice chair before beginning its review of the revised zoning ordinance. 
Photos by Linda Bentley

CAVE CREEK – With Commissioner Shelley Anderson absent, the planning commission reelected Dan Baxley and Reg Monachino as chair and vice chair, respectively, before tackling its review of the revised zoning ordinance.

Planning Director Ian Cordwell explained the revision as an attempt by staff to reorganize the ordinance by removing the technical requirements and creating separate guidelines for those aspects, consolidating information under the applicable chapters and taking into consideration changes in technology.

During public comments, Desert Foothills Land Trust Executive Director Sonia Perillo said the land trust’s concerns with Chapter 4 were that the uses for open space were not consistent with conservation goals.

Commissioner Peter Omundson raised concerns over Section 1.4 (D), which states, “Any permit issued in conflict with the terms or provisions of this ordinance shall be recognized by the town as being null and void,” and questioned the circumstances under which the town would void a permit after the applicant started work and money had been spent.

Recently retired Senior Planner Larry Sahr, who came out of retirement to attend the meeting since he worked on most of the revisions, said the intent was to apply to applicants who submit inaccurate or erroneous information on their permit applications which may not be revealed until a subsequent site visit or inspection.

alice kunks, kim brennan and anna marsoloAlice Kunka asked during public comment, “When you issue a permit … don’t they do a site visit before issuing a permit?”

Cordwell said that is not always the case.

Kunka asked if there was a document that showed all the changes made to the ordinance and was told there was not.

As the commission moved on to Chapter 2, Monachino asked if “equine training,” listed as an allowable use on property zoned Desert Rural with two or more contiguous acres under single ownership, included mounted shooting.

Cordwell said it did.

Monachino strongly recommended it not be included.

Sahr suggested making mounted shooting a stand-alone item subject to a special use permit.

Commissioner Ted Bryda asked to add number six, animal shelters, to Section 2.1(B)(1)(c) outlining uses not allowed as private ranch use.

Bryda also asked that the term “quasi-public” be removed. Cordwell said staff could work on coming up with a better term.

During public comment Kim Brennan said there was a significant number of the population involved in mounted shooting, disallowing animal shelters could limit horse rescues and just because there is better more advanced technology available doesn’t necessarily mean everyone can afford that latest technology.

Anna Marsolo handed out a photo showing a large power pole placed in her neighborhood by APS with the town engineer’s approval and stated the type of pole installed is currently prohibited by the zoning ordinance in residential zoning districts.

Kunka said her main question was, “Were there any changes that made any further restrictions to residential or commercial ranches?”

Cordwell said there were not.

Bryda suggested the town require lighting in commercial and multi-family residential parking lots for safety.

After voting to recommend approval of the first two chapters of the zoning ordinance, as amended, the commission had to vote to continue past 9 p.m.

Omundson suggested they skip to Chapter 4 for review since it was a short chapter.

However, Baxley said he was tired and asked for a motion to adjourn until the Feb. 17 meeting.

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