Planning Commission Minutes 2-13-182018-03-14T08:31:47+00:00

FEBRUARY 13, 2018

Members Present:
Robert Anderson, Chairman
Val Bennett, Commission Member
Micah Capener, Commission Member
Arnold Eberhard, Commission Member
Troy Forrest, Commission Member
Ben Greener, Commission Member
Tom Stokes, Commission Member
Bret Rohde, City Councilmember
Steve Bench, Zoning Administrator
Cynthia Nelson, Deputy Recorder

Chairman Robert Anderson called the Planning Commission Meeting to order at 5:29 p.m. The meeting was held February 13, 2018 in the City Council Meeting Room at 102 South Tremont Street, Tremonton, Utah. Chairman Robert Anderson, Commission Members Bennett, Capener, Eberhard, Forrest, Greener, Stokes, City Councilmember Bret Rohde, Zoning Administrator Steve Bench, and Deputy Recorder Cynthia Nelson were in attendance.

1. Approval of agenda:

Motion by Commission Member Capener to approve the February 13, 2018 agenda, but noted that he has a conflict with item c. Motion seconded by Commission Member Forrest. Vote: Chairman Anderson – aye, Commission Member Bennett – aye, Commission Member Capener – aye, Commission Member Eberhard – aye, Commission Member Forrest – aye, Commission Member Greener – aye, Commission Member Stokes – aye. Motion approved.

2. Approval of minutes: January 9, 2018

Motion by Commission Member Forrest to approve the January 9, 2018 minutes. Motion seconded by Commission Member Eberhard. Vote: Chairman Anderson – aye, Commission Member Bennett – aye, Commission Member Capener – aye, Commission Member Eberhard – aye, Commission Member Forrest – aye, Commission Member Greener – aye, Commission Member Stokes – aye. Motion approved.

3. New Business:

a. Preliminary Review for Holmgren Estates East, Phase 6 – Lyle Holmgren

Administrator Bench said this is phase 6. Not long ago he did phase 5, adding six lots. This one will add seven more and tie into 775 East, as well as 180 North with Main Street. Commission Member Capener asked if the one going north would tie into the lot by resident Greg Madsen. Administrator Bench said it would, but there is still a gap. Commission Member Capener said do we need to do something to undo the paved circle turnaround? I thought in the code there was a paved turnaround he has to put in. Administrator Bench said if it is greater than the depth of a lot then he would. With the depth of the stub we figured there would be no need for them to go up in there. If it was a long, little one, like developer Gary Madsen’s that dead-ends after seven or eight lots, then a turnaround would be required. Councilmember Rohde said what does the code call for—a certain amount of feet or lots? Administrator Bench said I do not think the code defines it. We decided if it is just a stub of one lot then a turnaround is not required. If it goes greater than that, then a turnaround would be required.

Councilmember Rohde said to protect Holmgren and any other developers we ought to define that to make it a little more specific. Commission Member Capener said I think it is partly wasteful that we put it in and then tear it out. Administrator Bench said that is why we do not require it on the stub. Commission Member Capener said which is good, I support that. I just wonder if we need to change the code to make it clearer. I do not think we need a turnaround because we know it is going to connect in with another road and the likelihood of a fire truck having to go down that far is not great because there is nothing there yet. I think we need the turnaround, but I am not sure it needs to be paved in the spot we have to tear out for the next phase. Has this already been approved by the Land Use Board? Administrator Bench said this is preliminary for Planning Commission to okay and send back to the Land Use Board for the final. Commission Member Capener questioned if the Master Plan needs to be updated to make sure roads line up. Administrator Bench said when you do a Master Plan you cannot predict the exact point where that road is going to go.

Motion by Commission Member Forrest to approve the preliminary and send it back to Land Use. Motion seconded by Commission Member Bennett. Vote: Chairman Anderson – aye, Commission Member Bennett – aye, Commission Member Capener – aye, Commission Member Eberhard – aye, Commission Member Forrest – aye, Commission Member Greener – aye, Commission Member Stokes – aye. Motion approved.

b. Preliminary Review for Garfield Subdivision, Phase 3 – Gary Madsen

Councilmember Rohde said this is behind Commission Member Capener’s house, right? He said yes, mine is north of there. Administrator Bench said on the east end it shows the cul-de-sac, but it has been stubbed with a hammerhead turnaround (250 south). Madsen said that road would back right into Kipp Tanner’s house. Commission Member Bennett asked how the City is doing on the water project. That is always in the back of my mind when we are adding developments, but I am not against them. Councilmember Rohde said it is coming along slowly. Commission Member Eberhard said would you define slowly. Councilmember Rohde said we just have a whole bunch of questions we want answered. I am hoping that some of the phases will start this summer. It comes down to cost—how much it is going to cost per home. We have to work through that. Commission Member Bennett said are we going to have any kind of water shortage this year. Administrator Bench said this year there should not be any. Councilmember Rohde said we had the Conservancy District talk to us last City Council meeting and if we get into an emergency they can help us—it was quite encouraging. Mr. Madsen asked if the City already has lines that connect to the district. Councilmember Rohde said yes, we could add some pumps, which would increase our flow.

Commission Member Capener asked if lot 44 meets the frontage of 80 feet. Also lots 26, 27, 28 and 29 do not have dimensions on the cul-de-sac frontage. Mr. Madsen reminded him that there is no cul-de-sac there. Administrator Bench said they would take in the radius of three feet. Commission Member Stokes asked if 27 is a straighter lot. Commission Member Capener said straight and two lots on both sides. Administrator Bench said if you look at the back on lot 44 it is 92 feet. Commission Member Capener said is there a turn radius on the corner that is not showing. Administrator Bench said not on this particular plat, but it will be on the construction drawings. Mr. Madsen stated if he owned the other piece he would probably have put a circle there, but since he does not he will add the hammerhead. That will be paved, but not to the same standards as the road then the curb and gutter will stop short.

Motion by Commission Member Forrest to approve and send it back to Land Use. Motion seconded by Commission Member Greener. Vote: Chairman Anderson – aye, Commission Member Bennett – aye, Commission Member Capener – aye, Commission Member Eberhard – aye, Commission Member Forrest – aye, Commission Member Greener – aye, Commission Member Stokes – aye. Motion approved.

c. Amend zoning to allow additional uses at Tremont Center LLC – Micah Capener

Commission Member Capener voiced that he has a conflict of interest. Administrator Bench said the application was submitted on January 19. The additional uses include an auto dealership, a multi-family attached—which is allowed, it just has to be stacked, not side by side—a dry cleaning drop off, as well as a carwash and fuel center, which is a wish of the proposed grocery store. Chapter 16, the overlay zone, shows the list of uses for the Tremont Center.

Commission Member Capener said we are just allowing it so I can put an auto dealership there. Right now it says dry cleaning is prohibited. I am not trying to do dry cleaning we just might do a dry cleaning drop off, like an office that takes it somewhere else. Chairman Anderson said technically it is called an agency. Commission Member Capener said multi-family attached allows me to build four-plexes on the north end. I am having a tough time making the numbers pencil in for the Tremonton market on a stacked project—it is too expensive, but I am working on it.

The last one was a fuel center and carwash. Two of the grocery stores we have been working with require visibility to the site. As part of that we want to put the fuel center so you can see the grocery store through the buildings on the front. Part of the stipulations with the City was that they wanted 60% of the buildings on the front, which blocks visibility of the back. A fuel center becomes more feasible under that design. The fuel center is the grocery store design and the carwash is separate and would be out front. Commission Member Bennett said what was the original reason you did the 60% to be built on the front. Administrator Bench said that was a discussion years ago, more from Commission Member Capener’s team than the City. Commission Member Capener said it was Manager Warnke who wanted it that way. The vision was they wanted to continue the buildings on Main Street up front, which poses two problems. One the canal was in the way and number two that is what has caused our parking problem—all the buildings are out front and people do not want to park in the back. We are trying to get as many buildings as we can along the front, but I think that was Manager Warnke’s vision from before.

Administrator Bench said it is well past the vision—that is my person thought. The car dealership blew it right out of the water. I have never seen a car dealership in a development like this. Commission Member Greener said same thing on the gas station, it does not seem like an appropriate place for it. Administrator Bench said I am not as technical on that as I was for the dealership. Chairman Anderson asked if the car dealership would be on Main Street? Commission Member Capener said it would have frontage, as well as go back behind. Normally developments like this do not work in towns of this size and in order to make it work we have to develop a wider scope of potential buildings. To do that we have to do it in a timely manner so as to fund the CDA to rebuild Main Street—that is the vision. We have to do it fast enough so we can build the increment and have enough money to rebuild the rest of Main Street. I am trying to get creative and get different buildings moving faster. If we leave it just as retail it will be a 40-year deal because we do not have enough retail to fill 40 acres.

Councilmember Rohde said I would hate to upset the dealership and lose the sales tax revenue out of the City. Commission Member Forrest said a dealership is right across the street, what does it matter? Administrator Bench said there would not be one across the street when the new one is built. Commission Member Forrest said I guess I am all right with that. The sales tax has to be a big funding stream for our City. Administrator Bench said I do not disagree with that. I do not want anybody to leave I just do not think it is the right location. We were trying to do a nice walk-able, bring people in type shopping. Councilmember Rohde said it is down at the west end. Commission Member Capener said the dealership will be on the west and goes to the apartments so it will be a good buffer between the RV park and the propane place, and the retail center. I have other plans like movie theaters, food courts and the grocery store, which hooks on to what is already built. Administrator Bench said if the Planning Commission is good with it we will have to set a public hearing and go through those motions. Commission Member Stokes said I move that we move it to a public hearing. Commission Member Bennett seconded it. No vote was required to go to a public hearing.

d. Discussion on zoning and animals – Stan Smith

Stan Smith, of Harmony Acres, said we are trying to get enforcement on the existing zoning in the area to the west of us and the freeway, especially on the hill. We bought our property in 2000 and the City Commission has never allowed livestock on that hill. They have repeatedly told people no animals, except six years ago when I signed off for a family to have some horses. They had a conditional use permit and were told at the time that if they sell they would not be able to transfer that right to have animals. We were told at the time they would not allow any more on that hill, especially cattle, sheep, horse and goats. When we bought our place we did so with the understanding that it would not be used for that purpose.

The zoning on that land, as well as the land below it to the freeway, is CG and according to Tremonton’s website they do not allow livestock there. Jeff Madsen came in on January 13 and put a fence up across the property and on the west side. He did not say anything to anybody until the fence was up. I expressed my opinion that he would not be able to have livestock up there. He plans to use that as a birthing and feeding area, but he has ample room other places rather than right behind our homes. My home is only 75 feet from my back property line. We are asking that the zoning be honored and they not be able to put cattle up there. The 70 cattle in there now are free to roam the top and bottom of the hill. If it is not stated in the zoning regulations as something you can have then you cannot do it.

John White moved out because he was not allowed to have a couple horses up there. What we are afraid of is not so much what Jeff Madsen is going to do in the next year or two, but what these landowners are going to do up there afterward. They will say this was allowed before so we should be able to do it. Jeff Madsen is leasing this land from a gentleman up there and getting water and access to it. Our big concern is what is going to happen in the future. This was all slated for development and stubbed for homes. If they cannot have two horses why are we allowing beef up there on that scale? In the last 18 years they have never allowed animals on that hill, why now? We have seven homes on that hill ranging from 55 to 110 feet to the back fence. We realize we live in a farming community, but when zoning regulations are put in place they should be honored.

Commission Member Greener said I have not seen any development so existing agriculture is permitted. Commission Member Forrest said to me it is all existing because that is what it was used for before and it has not been developed yet. Commission Member Eberhard said what noise is connected? Will it be worse than the freeway. Mrs. Smith said have you been around cattle when they are being fed, then you know the noise. Commission Member Greener said but you have cattle on the other side of you. Stan Smith said we have the buffer of the road and several hundred feet before the cattle get to us. We do not have a problem with that situation because it is not adjoining our property.

Commission Member Greener asked Administrator Bench if he has heard of the City not allowing cattle there before? Administrator Bench said we did a conditional use permit years ago and I do not recall John White coming in. I am sure we would have given him a conditional use permit if he had. Commission Member Forrest said to take this a step further, any of that land that is irrigated, if someone comes in here and says, ‘hey, there cannot be agriculture here because it has been zoned this way,’ then we’d have to tell those guys they cannot grow alfalfa or anything else. It is a slippery slope. Everywhere we keep agriculture in place until the development happens, that is the way zoning works. Stan Smith said there was a development there, but now it has been eliminated. Commission Member Forrest said there is no development until the day they turn dirty. Commission Member Greener said we do not disagree with you, but land changes. Commission Member Forrest said until it develops the previous use is grandfathered in. Stan Smith said but that previous use has been 18 years. Commission Member Forrest said it does not matter if it is 300 years, if it was used for that before that does not matter until that changes.

Stan Smith said in the zoning regulations there is nothing in there that says they can have livestock in that area. Commission Member Forrest said it says previous agriculture is permitted, which includes sheep and cattle. That is what it reads. Stan Smith said if that were the case then why disguise it as something it is not with the fact that horses are not permitted. Then all of a sudden we have all this cattle that can come to our back door. Commission Member Forrest said I am not disagreeing with you. On your property you cannot have the horse, but it has not been developed where it is not your property. The use is grandfathered in. Commission Member Capener said it is a similar use with your home. It changed after your home was built and it does not fit that zone, but you are still allowed to be there because you are grandfathered in. Your home is allowed the same way cattle would be allowed. Mrs. Smith said there was no notification of a zoning change. Commission Member Greener said the zoning has not been changed. Mrs. Smith said he is saying it was changed after we built our home. Stan Smith said they annexed that land in after we bought the property.

Administrator Bench said a lot of this was done over 20 years ago when a family owned the property. They developed two, four-lot subdivisions. Their dream was to develop a big commercial, freeway style, industrial development, but it never happened because the sewer was still a mile away and they had no financing to back it. About six years ago we were looking at subdivisions that were approved and recorded, but never developed. We took those to the City Council to get them vacated. If a developer wanted to re-do a development agreement with the City they would adhere to the current standards. This property was sold again last year to an LLC and it is back to one large parcel.

Stan Smith said I have run a business up there for over 10 years, a welding shop. Mrs. Smith said it is no longer allowed under the new provisions and we are aware of that, but it was when we got the business license. Commission Member Capener said what if someone comes in and says they do not like your welding shop? You were grandfathered in, but is now not allowed. How should we treat that? Mrs. Smith said you tell them it was grandfathered in. Commission Members said that is what we are telling you with the cattle.

Stan Smith said we are asking that at the minimum the cattle be kept off the top for the hill. If they stay below no one has a problem with that, but we have a problem with them being in our backyard. His neighbor Richard McSweeney said Jeff Madsen attached his fence to Mr. McSweeney’s post, which is in his property line. It was the cheapest place to put it. His next-door neighbor owns that property behind him, but Jeff Madsen put his fence across his property and needs permission to do so. Stan Smith said after 20 years of denial for people to have horse corrals, all of a sudden it is allowed. Commission Member Forrest said on your property where it has been developed you cannot have horse corrals, but it can be on this property, which has never come out of agriculture and never been developed. It is what it always was and will be until it is developed. Stan Smith said I do not read anywhere in there that the agriculture allows for livestock. Commission Member Forrest said agriculture by definition is livestock. Chairman Anderson said we have no documentation that says that has not been allowed. Administrator Bench said I could only go off the fact that the Planning Commission did a conditional use years ago. I have no recollection of Mr. White coming in for a conditional use permit. If he had talked to me I think we would have done the same thing. He would have been sent to the Planning Commission for them to make decision on a conditional use and go from there.

Stan Smith said I understand what you are saying about it being used as agriculture, but it was my understanding that when it was zoned CG it was for the purpose of keeping livestock out of there. Commission Member Forrest said that is the intent when it is developed. If you follow your logic then someone could come and complain about a cornfield and we would have to tell them they cannot raise corn and that does not make sense. Once the development takes place and there is a home or businesses then the zoning kicks in, but the way our zoning ordinance reads is that if it existed there before it still does. Even if we were to change it today that agriculture use remains there until it is developed. Stan Smith said I am not asking for a change of zoning, but for years we have been told we cannot have horses, but now someone wants to bring cattle in that manner then that is okay. It is a potential for other problems. The biggest problem we see is someone else coming in there and running a large amount of cattle on that ground.

The Commissioners questioned issues with a feedlot, but agreed that is not allowed in the zoning. Commission Member Bennett asked if they have anything documented about feedlots. Commission Member Forrest said a feedlot is where cattle feed for 35 to 40 days a year in an area where no vegetation grows. It has nothing to do with the number of animals. Administrator Bench said there is a definition in our code, a practice which animals are kept and intensively feeding in a relatively restricted area as contrasted to open pasturage.

Commission Member Stokes asked if Jeff Madsen could put the fence lower on the hill. Commission Member Forrest said they could ask him to feed the cattle below the hill. He could feed next to your fence, but as a neighbor I would ask him to feed lower. Stan Smith said I am not happy with cattle so close to my home. Commission Member Capener said he would have a conversation with Jeff Madsen and see if he would move the fence down the hill a ways. Stan Smith clarified that the acreage below the hill is 94 acres and there are about six acres on top of it, where the cows have been grazing. Commission Member Forrest said the cows would not stay there all summer because they have other places to be. He guesses it will be anywhere from 30 to 45 days a year that they will be on the hill. Your protection is in us because as soon as they develop it they would have to re-zone it and then they would come through us. Unless they come up with a good argument, and you would have a chance to counter, then we would not change it. Although we do not agree with you today you have a long-term protection that it is zoned the way it is zoned. Stan Smith said once cattle get there and are allowed it will be harder to get them removed than if it was not there to start with. Commission Member Forrest said right now it is a grandfathered use. Administrator Bench said we will talk with Jeff Madsen and can clarify a distance from a single family dwelling for a temporary field fence. Commission Member Capener said these rules are important, they are the ones that will allow you to resell your home. That grandfather status has to continue so you can re-sell. Commission Member Stokes asked if the fence is safe. Stan Smith said it is a hot wire fence with panels, but if the cows pushed they could go through the fence. It is tied with bailing wire. Commission Member Stokes said if this becomes a problem, he agrees with Mr. Smith it ought to be address.

4. Adjournment

Motion by Commission Member Capener to adjourn the meeting. Motion seconded by consensus of the Board. The meeting adjourned at 6:36 p.m.

The undersigned duly acting and appointed Recorder for Tremonton City Corporation hereby certifies that the foregoing is a true and correct copy of the minutes of the Planning Commission held on the above referenced date. Minutes were prepared by Jessica Tanner.

Dated this 13th day of March, 2018.

Linsey Nessen, CITY RECORDER

*Utah Code 52-4-202, (6) allows for a topic to be raised by the public and discussed by the public body even though it was not included in the agenda or advance public notice given; however, no final action will be taken.