ASHLAND PLANNING COMMISSION
October 28, 2014
CALL TO ORDER
Vice Chair Melanie Mindlin called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. in the Civic Center Council Chambers, 1175 East Main Street.
|Troy J. Brown, Jr.
||Bill Molnar, Community Development Director
Maria Harris, Planning Manager
April Lucas, Administrative Supervisor
||Mike Morris, absent
Community Development Director Bill Molnar reminded the group that their next meeting has been moved to Wednesday, November 12; the public hearing for the Cityís ice rink cover is on the agenda. He also announced the Planning Commission is scheduled to give their annual report to the City Council in December, and stated there are a number of items in the works at staff level including changes to the wildfire hazard zone and revisions to the airport zone.
Approval of Minutes
1. September 9, 2014 Regular Meeting.
2. September 23, 2014 Study Session.
Commissioners Miller/Thompson m/s to approve the Consent Agenda. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed. [Commissioners Brown and Peddicord abstained]
No one came forward to speak.
Approval of Findings for PA-2014-01354 & PA-2014-01355, 1016 Clear Creek Dr.
Commissioners Thompson/Miller m/s to approve the Findings. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
1. Meeting Attendance Requirements.
Mr. Molnar explained the newly adopted uniform policies and procedures ordinance for commissions and committees requires the Planning Commission to set their own meeting attendance. He noted when the Commission made their recommendation to the Council back in 2012, a flat attendance rate of 75-80% over a 12-month period was suggested (with no distinction between excused and unexcused absences).
Staff was asked if the Commission could reconsider their requirements again in the future and Mr. Molnar responded that the Commission could establish a date for an annual review.
Commissioner Brown asked if the Commissionís requirements should restrict consecutive meeting absences. Commissioner Dawkins commented that in his time on the Commission this has not been an issue.
Support was voiced for reviewing the attendance policy on an annual basis and adopting a 75% attendance requirement.
Commissioners Thompson/Dawkins m/s for the Planning Commission to adopt an attendance requirement consistent with AMC 2.10.025(b) with the stipulation that the attendance requirements shall be reviewed at least once annually at the time the attendance report is adopted and forwarded to the City Recorder. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed unanimously.
2. Continued Discussion of Master Planning Approach.
Planning Manager Maria Harris provided a brief overview of the draft report to the City Council which addresses: Benefits, Costs, Variation in Planning Area Characteristics, Environmental Resources, Initiating Planning Process, Boundaries, and Consultant.
The Commission shared their comments and suggestions regarding the draft report. Commissioner Mindlin stated the memo is well written and reflects their discussion, but thinks they side-stepped the question raised by some councilors regarding the creation of new zoning designations within the plan area. She questioned whether the master plan goals could be achieved without creating new zoning categories. Mr. Molnar commented that the creation of a new zoning designation is dependent on a number of things, including specific issues and goals for the plan area. He stated if there are characteristics you are trying to preserve that are not covered in the existing standards, it may be necessary to adopt new standards. Ms. Harris called attention to the North Mountain zone that is similar to R-1 and stated there are only five uses allowed in the North Mountain R-1 zone, whereas the R-1 chapter that applies to the rest of town has four times as many allowed uses. She added you could not go back and change the existing R-1 chapter and remove uses that are currently allowed without creating legal issues. Commissioner Brown commented that how the new zones are titled may be causing confusion for citizens and elected officials and suggested a title that easily relates to existing designations, such as R-1-NM. He added it is necessary to make adjustments to the current zones to handle the differences in these specific areas and accomplish the goals you want to achieve. Commissioner Peddicord agreed that they need to have this as a tool that is available if you need to define a zone further. Commissioner Thompson stated in the context of the Unified Land Use Ordinance, any new code language will likely pull towards more simplicity. She added perhaps these concerns could be addressed by stating in limited cases where master plans are done there be very clear reasons why these plans are undertaken and to have sign off in advance on key plan goals (such as density). Commissioner Mindlin requested this issue be addressed more clearly in the memo.
Ms. Harris noted the Unified Land Use Ordinance (ULUO) memo included in their packets is for information only and clarified this was presented to the City Council at their October 7 meeting. She provided a brief update of the Councilís discussion of the ULUO amendments and noted they are scheduled to continue their discussion of this topic at their November 4 meeting.
Meeting adjourned at 8:05 p.m.
Submitted by, April Lucas