The Henderson County Board of
Commissioners met for a Public Input Session on the Land Development Code at at
Those present were: Chairman Bill Moyer, Vice-Chairman
Also present was: Planning Director
CALL TO ORDER/WELCOME
Chairman Moyer called the meeting to order and welcomed all in attendance.
OVERVIEW OF LAND DEVELOPMENT CODE
New junkyards operated as a business will be allowed in the industrial Zoning district with a special use permit issued by the Board of Adjustment. Existing junkyards in the County will be grandfathered. Junk, such as trash and junk vehicles on individual properties are regulated under the County’s Nuisance Prevention Ordinance, not the LDC. The LDC will not change the nuisance Ordinance.
Currently there are numerous zoning districts that add to confusion about how the County should grow. The draft Land Development Code reduces the number of zoning districts and makes it a lot simpler for everyone to understand. The County zoning changes will not affect anyone within a municipality’s zoning jurisdiction. Maps of the proposed zoning are available at the Planning Department Office and online at www.hendersoncountync.org – click on the link to the Land Development Code.
The Open Use Zoning District was intended to prohibit a few uses that have very negative impacts on neighbors. It does not limit how dense (number of homes per acre) new developments can be. If you are currently in Open Use Zoning a wide range of residential, commercial and industrial uses are permitted without limit. With the draft Land Development Code, areas zoned open use will be classified into a residential, commercial, or industrial zoning district.
No Businesses already legally operating in the Open Use area will be allowed to continue operation and even expand. You could say that they are “grandfathered” under the proposed code.
R-1, R-2, R-2MH and R-3 Zoning Districts are all residential zoning districts and the primary difference is the density, or number of homes per acre, that each district allows. The R-1 district is the most urban with an average of 4 homes per acre for detached single-family home development. Multi-family developments, such as townhouses, condos, and apartments, are permitted to have 16 homes per acre in the R-1 district. The R-2 and R-2MH districts allow single-family homes at 1 home per acre on average. Multi-family development would be allowed to have 2 homes per acre on average. The R-3 district allows 1 home per 1.5 acres on average. There is no real difference in the R-2 and R-2MH districts except that R-2 does not allow manufactured homes and R-2MH does.
The majority uses in the rural areas of the County are currently agriculture, forestland, residential or vacant. Residential zoning is proposed for these areas because agriculture and forestland are exempt and existing businesses and commercial establishments are grandfathered. It was also intended to allow residential development to continue, with restrictions, until a small area plan is completed for these areas. Community residents will be involved in the development of these small area plans to determine where commercial development should occur.
The New Land Development Code
does allow manufactured homes in
A sign can be placed at a business under the proposed Land Development Code. Some signs do not require a zoning permit while larger signs will require a zoning permit. Freestanding sign sizes range from 18 to 75 feet high and sign size ranges from 72 to 200 square feet. Wall signs can be up to 10% of the wall face up to 250 square feet.
The new code includes the current floodplain regulations and makes no changes to the Flood Damage Prevention Ordinance. There are no regulations proposed regarding steep slopes.
Chairman Moyer explained that one of the major changes the land development code brings about is in the proposed zoning map, as is on the wall. Several years ago when open use zoning was implemented it was done so to protect areas from some eight or nine major things that people did not want to happen in their area. It was always the plan to move to more restrictive type zoning in this area and that is what this land development code does. There are less things that are permitted in the area than were as open use. It is a more restrictive type zoning.
Chairman Moyer asked each person who had signed up for informal public comments to limit their time to about 3 minutes.
1) Vince Gibbs – (spoke to staff before meeting) Mr. Gibbs feels that the maximum of adding square footage for an accessory dwelling unit should have the cap of 1200 sq. ft., but not the restriction about the accessory dwelling not exceeding 50% of the floor area for the principal structure.
2) Tedd Pearce – Planning Board Chair presented concept of adding an additional residential district to the LDC (R4), R4 having a density of 1 unit per 5 acres, R4 would be zoned on property located in and around the national forest service lands, parks and game loans, and suggested adding commercial uses to the industrial district in the LDC.
3) Robert Eaton – Mr. Eaton has lived here for 32 years and thanked the Board of Commissioners for coming to the community. He had read the summary of LDC online and parts of the draft LDC. Mr. Eaton believe that as people make plans for development they need to make a conscious effort for their development to be more user friendly – pedestrian, bike, etc. He also believes that the Board of Commissioners should address impact fees by having those who profit pay for necessary road fees.
4) Pam Kalpert – Ms. Kalpert is concerned about the impact development has on roads, sewer, water, etc. She feels that the County should have impact fees to cover these associated costs.
5) Jim Brissie – Mr. Brissie thanked the Board of Commissioners for coming and for all the work they were doing. He was concerned that the property around the school which is currently R-40 will be rezoned R2. R2 is less zoning than R-40 in terms of setbacks and uses (would allow duplexes and triplexes). Mr. Brissie is also concerned about the maximum number of homes allowed on lots. He feels that high density developments should be allowed that support infrastructure.
6) Ernest Sheppard – Mr. Sheppard could not understand much of the information in the LDC. He feels that it is restricting to many things and makes it hard to live here under the proposed restrictions. People are being priced out of the area and can’t afford better homes. Mr. Sheppard is not against those that are wealthy, but feels that it will deprive working folks of the American dream. He questions if the Board of Commissioners is trying to remove local, poor folks from the County because they cannot afford a big home.
Walter Sheppard – Mr. Sheppard has a problem with the
whole process and zoning and questions how zoning can protect anyone from
getting a landfill in their backyard if the County makes the decision to allow
or permit it. He feels that people are
getting scared or pushed into doing something they don’t want or need with the
LDC. Mr. Sheppard stated that 60% of the
County will be zoned residential and feels that the County wants the tax
dollars from the high dollar homes. He
also feels that all county officials should take oath of office. The LDC and process is an undue influence
because LOS regional council, Raleigh, the
8) Carolyn Franklin – Ms. Franklin feels that Mr. Sheppard summed it up and it is our constitutional right to own property and do what we want with it. She thinks that it is okay to regulate things such as a sewer running into a branch.
Alan Martin – Mr. Martin is from this area and went to
school at Atkinson Elementary. He feels
that the Commissioners represent the County and should and will take peoples
comments into play. He remembers zoning
trying to be put into play since he was a little kid. Mr. Martin feels that development will be
brought in local people can’t afford the cost of homes. He is also concerned that farming is going
away and feels that
10) Libby Brissie – Ms. Brissie questioned how many homes could be put in R-40 compared to the proposed R-2 district and was concerned with the types of homes and units allowed in R-2. She was also concerned about the setbacks from R-40 to R-2 being too small. Ms. Brissie feels that the County is not increasing protection with fewer restrictions as proposed and that the R-40 zoning district should be kept where it is now.
11) Hubert Barnwell – Mr. Barnwell stated that a lot of people have moved here to retire. He has issues with manufactured homes not being allowed. Mr. Barnwell feels that it is nice that people are moving to the area that can afford to put in a high dollar home, but his children cannot afford that. What about the people who are already here? He feels that if you have plenty of land, or the required amount, you should be able to put in any type of home including manufactured homes.
There being no further public input the meeting adjourned at