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The Lake News Online
  • New Laurie mayor Scott Fahrer creates position on P&Z board

  • After being sworn in as mayor of Laurie on May 13, Scott Fahrer appointed Bradley Davis as an additional member to the city's planning and zoning board, bumping the total number of planning commissioners from seven to eight. Fahrer had to cast a tie-breaking vote in his first meeting as mayor to get the appointment approved.
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  • After being sworn in as mayor of Laurie on May 13, Scott Fahrer appointed Bradley Davis as an additional member to the city's planning and zoning board, bumping the total number of planning commissioners from seven to eight. Fahrer had to cast a tie-breaking vote in his first meeting as mayor to get the appointment approved.
    Alderwomen Karen Dobbins and Val Ites made the motion and second to confirm the appointment and voted for it while freshly-reelected Aldermen Greg Lux and Allen Kimberling voted against it.
    State statute and city ordinance allow up to 15 positions for the municipal planning commission, but the City of Laurie has traditionally had seven members.
    If a new position was to be created on the planning commission, Lux asked prior to the vote that the city check or advertise with the community in some way to see if anyone else was interested in filling the new position.
    According to Fahrer, however, he had already checked with the community on his own and he wanted to appoint Davis.
    In the April 8 municipal election, Davis challenged Kimberling, the incumbent, for the Ward II aldermen seat and lost by a vote of 42 to 62.
    Fahrer supported Davis' campaign during the recent election.
    Davis has had an issue with Laurie P&Z and the Board of Aldermen which is still ongoing. His house, not located on a highway but adjacent to other commercial properties, was zoned commercial with the implementation of P&Z. It lost its grandfathered status in 2013 under a former owner with the house considered vacant as city officials considered that it had not been used as a primary residence for more than six months.
    In February, aldermen agreed to have the zoning ordinance reviewed and possibly create a new classification to use a commercial property as a residence that would allow Davis and his family to continue to use the property as their home.
    City Attorney Steve Grantham notified the board of aldermen at the May 13 meeting that the related draft ordinance was ready to be forwarded on to the planning commission for review.
    Once the planning commission reviews the proposed amendment to the zoning, it will make a recommendation to the board of aldermen. At that point, aldermen will have the opportunity to comment, according to Grantham.
    The public may comment on the ordinance when it is under review at either level. The next Laurie P&Z meeting will be at 6 p.m. Monday, June 2.
    Lux was the sole vote against sending the proposed P&Z amendment to the planning commission for review.
    In regular annual appointments, Grantham was reappointed as city attorney and Pat Scott as municipal judge. Ites was appointed as mayor pro-tem (acting mayor if the mayor is not available). Jeff Chorpening was appointed to fill an open seat on the P&Z Board of Adjustment formerly held by Ken Zgiet.
    Page 2 of 2 - In other P&Z news, the board of aldermen approved three rezonings — two for C-2 general commercial related to property around the water tower near Highway 5 for the planned expansion of AOK RV and one to make the Mooreview Apartments property R-3. The apartments had previously operated as a pre-existing non-conforming use.

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