Plan amended 7 times

As part of their annual review and updating of the Comprehensive Plan, the Island County board of commissioners on Monday passed a series of amendments implementing a variety of new ordinances for the new year.

In all, seven ordinances were passed during the open public meeting.

An amendment to the county’s zoning ordinance (C-161-01) works to consolidate and centralize enforcement authority in the Department of Planning and Community Development. In some cases, two related zoning violations, which formerly required two separate enforcement responses, have been combined into a single violation. Now only one response is necessary, thereby saving the department money and time.

Planning Director Phil Bakke said that the new ordinance represents efforts to further streamline the enforcement process.

Ordinance C-161-01 incorporates into the county’s zoning ordinance a set of development standards for the construction of public schools, which includes site plan review provisions with maximum limits on impervious surfaces and minimum requirements for open spaces.

Another amendment to the zoning ordinance (C-162-01) creates standards by which the county can assess variance requests for issues of site coverage (i.e. parking lots and such). Prior to adopting the changes, the board heard comments from a handful of citizens concerned about the allegedly damaging environmental and ecological impact of the proliferation of impervious surfaces.

Ordinance C-163-01 sets minimum standards for the development of mobile homes on parcels that are zoned rural. This puts mobile homes on lots smaller than 2.5 acres in the Rural Zone under the same standards as mobile homes in the Rural Residential Zone.

Height variance requests by developers will now be reviewed and processed by the county under Ordinance C-164-01, which sets in place a series of “reasonable use” standards and regulations to be met if one wishes to exceed the codified height limit on structures.

Ordinance C-165-01 incorporates into zoning code various development standards for fire stations.

Au Sable in Eby’s Landing National Historical Reserve was rezoned from Rural to a Special Review District (Ordinance C-166-010, which allows for special consideration for future development under a master plan that protects lands and structures that have historical, archaeological or environmental significance.

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