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PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES

NOVEMBER 21, 2002


1. CALL TO ORDER AND ROLL CALL: Chair Balen called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. Chair Balen and Commissioners Meatzie, Hauser, Uhl and Cvar answered the roll. Commissioners Cutter and Milligan were absent. A quorum was present.
2. CITIZEN COMMENTS AND CONCERNS: None.
3. COMMISSION COMMENTS AND CONCERNS: Commissioner Cvar had no general concerns. Commissioner Uhl was concerned about the appearance of additional material at the meeting. Commissioner Hauser seconded that concern. There were no other concerns expressed.
4. MINUTES: The Commission considered the minutes from the October 22, 2002 meeting. Commissioner Meatzie moved to accept the minutes as presented, Commissioner Hauser seconded. Commissioner Cvar asked that the word "skate" be inserted in front of "park" on Page 2 for clarification. The motion to approve the minutes then carried unanimously on a voice vote.
5. CORRESPONDENCE: Chair Balen noted that he had received correspondence from Mr. Soderlund regarding the "neighborhood alert" program, including a map of the subdivision of Norwood Heights. Chair Balen asked that the document be filed to show their concerns. City Planner Lewis noted that he had received a letter from Buzz Schulte, requesting a meeting with the Planning Commission to request an amendment to the conditions of approval for Whispering Heights. He was requesting that the Commission consider requiring sidewalks on only one side of the street. Consensus of the Commission was that this issue could be placed in the January, 2003 agenda.
6. PUBLIC HEARING: Case File #1-NCALT-PC-02, Myrna Harrison: Chair Balen closed the Commission meeting and opened the Public Hearing, calling for abstentions, ex parte contact, bias or conflicts of interest. None were voiced.
 Staff Report: Mr. Lewis reviewed his staff report, noting that the request was to alter an existing nonconforming structure. The applicant was asking to increase the building height to 25', which would require a side yard setback of 8'4", but there was only a 2'6" existing side yard setback. Several letters of testimony had been received to be included in the record, several of which had been distributed that evening at the meeting. He summarized the letters of opposition, and noted that the two next door neighbors were not opposed to the application. He also reviewed two telephone calls, one in opposition and one with no objection, and conversation with two other property owners in opposition. Commissioner Cvar asked if the Fire District had been notified of the request. Mr. Lewis indicated that they had not.
 Applicant's Testimony: Robert Nickerson, agent for the applicant, addressed the Commission. He noted that the addition of the new structure would also require that a two-hour firewall be installed in the existing as well as the new structure. As for erosion concerns, he will be installing a culvert on the street side to control water runoff. The neighbors to either side had looked at the plans and felt that this would help to improve the aesthetics of the neighborhood by averaging the heights of the three buildings. Mr. Lewis confirmed that there was probably only 5' of space between the existing buildings. Chair Balen asked if the contractor had considered a parapet wall to avoid fire problems, and reviewed the plans with the contractor. He noted that it also appeared the deck may be encroaching on the front yard setback.
 Public Comments: None.
 Chair Balen closed the Public Hearing and opened the Commission meeting for deliberations. Commissioner Hauser commented that it seemed a new application was submitted every year for this area, and nothing was conforming. Commissioner Cvar stated that what they needed to look at was whether the proposed alteration would adversely affect the surrounding properties. Chair Balen noted the comments regarding fire, but indicated that was a concern with most of the houses in that area. Aesthetically, there was little that could be done about the fact that the houses were already so close together. Commissioner Cvar felt that the concern regarding fire was valid, noting that they were planning on putting up an additional 10' of wall that would be close to the other building. Unless there was a compelling reason, he did not feel that they should add to the existing problems. Chair Balen asked how the property owners could get fire insurance, and expressed a concern regarding the distance of the house to the property line, where the neighbor, Mr. Dane, had stated that the side yard was no more than 16". It was pointed out that the letter clarified the distance between the houses was 4'. Commissioner Meatzie asked if the sight distance would be impaired by the additional height, and Mr. Lewis noted that this would not have further impact, since the building was not further encroaching on the side yard but merely going up in height. Commissioner Meatzie noted that the addition of the firewall would assist in fire prevention, and Mr. Nickerson added that there were two windows on that side which would also be removed. This would also enhance fire prevention, since it would decrease the number of penetrations in the wall. It was determined that the County inspector would be able to address the concerns regarding firewall requirements as part of the inspection process. Chair Balen asked if there was a provision for an alteration of a non-conforming use, and staff distributed copies of the pertinent section of the code. Discussion ensued. Commissioner Cvar moved to approve the request with the recommended conditions in the staff report, and the additional stipulations for installation of a firewall and continuation of the metal roof. Commissioner Hauser seconded. The motion carried unanimously on a voice vote. Mr. Lewis noted that standard procedure was that the findings would come back to the Planning Commission at their next meeting, and suggested that the Commission consider allowing the Chair to sign off on the findings if they did not change from those suggested or imposed by the Commission at the meeting. The appeal period would start from the date of the Chair's signature. Consensus was that if the findings of fact could be prepared in the next couple days, the Chair would be authorized to sign off on them without the Commission needing to review them. Staff suggested that this be done by motion. Chair Balen moved to have the Commission authorize the Chair to sign off on the findings of fact when prepared. Commissioner Cvar seconded, and the motion carried unanimously on a voice vote.
7. OLD BUSINESS: Chair Balen noted that he had not received any comments regarding the article he had prepared to go into the paper. Mr. Lewis indicated that he had read through it but had not made any comments yet.
8. NEW BUSINESS:
 A. Consideration of Findings of Fact for Case File #6-C-02, City of Waldport: Chair Balen noted that the official findings of fact were before the Commission, and asked for any comments. None were made. Commissioner Cvar moved to adopt the findings as presented, Commissioner Hauser seconded, and the motion carried unanimously on a voice vote.
 B. Consideration of Redesign for Crestline Skatepark: Chair Balen noted that the word "facility" should be added to the title, as the structure in and of itself was not a park. Commissioner Cvar noted a concern, and read Section 16.84 of the Municipal Code regarding modification of a conditional use. City Planner Lewis noted that the Commission could make an interpretation regarding whether this would be a substantial change or modification. The process requires that the Planning Commission review and sign off on the building permit application, which is not ready at the present time. The original proposed location was near the power station, but it was felt that this may be an inappropriate location due to the proximity of the power lines. He had been requested to come up with a conceptual design to place the facility on the north end of the property, in order to give the designers an idea of where the facility could be placed so they could begin the design process. Discussion ensued. Consensus of the Commission that there was sufficient change to warrant a public hearing. Notification will be done the following day, and the hearing will be held on December 11th at 5:00 p.m. It was also determined that the findings from the public hearing could be expedited.
 C. Planner's Report: Mr. Lewis distributed his report, noting that most of the activity had to do with nuisance complaints filed in the Old Town area. There was also a report of a dock being built without a permit. He had contacted the individual but had not received a response to-date. There will be a partition request before the Commission in January of 2003. Their meeting in January will be on the fourth Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m.
 D. Other Issues: None.
9. ADJOURNMENT: At 8:30 p.m., there being no further business to come before the Commission, Commissioner Uhl moved to adjourn. Commissioner Meatzie seconded, and the motion carried unanimously on a voice vote.
Respectfully submitted,
Reda A. Quinlan, City Clerk
APPROVED by the Waldport Planning Commission this 11th day of December, 2002.
SIGNED by the Planning Commission Chair this 11th day of December, 2002.
Sam Balen, Planning Commission Chair