The Henderson County
Board of Commissioners met for a special called meeting at in the Commissioners' Conference Room
Those present were: Chairman Bill Moyer, Vice-Chairman
Also present were: Deputy Clerk to the Board Terry Wilson, Planning Director Anthony Starr, Senior Planner Autumn Radcliff, Planners Matt Card and Matt Cable, Research/Budget Analyst Amy Brantley, Communications Officer Pam Brice, and Associate County Attorney Sarah Zambon.
CALL TO ORDER/WELCOME
Chairman Moyer called the meeting to order and welcomed all in attendance, stating that the purpose of this meeting was a Public Hearing on the Land Development Code (LDC).
PUBLIC HEARING – Land Development Code (LDC)
Commercial Issue I – Commercial Uses Permitted in R3 and Other Zoning Districts, Excluding the Industrial Zoning District
Anthony Starr explained that the best way to review and revise this section would be to go through it and see by consensus which ones the Board would want to include and which ones to delete in the R3 district or other changes to the other districts.
Anthony Starr stated that the first changes occur in Section II, Accessory Uses:
Childcare Facility (as an accessory for a principal business), not stand alone. Add that in the R3 and there was a suggestion to also add it with a special use permit in the R2MH. Agreement by consensus.
Drive-Thru Window would be allowed as a special use permit in the R3 district. Agreement by consensus.
Single-Family Dwelling (as an accessory for a principal business) in the R3 and R2MH districts. Agreement by consensus.
Fuel Pumps in the R3 and R2MH districts with special use permit. There was some discussion on this one. Agreement by consensus. Commissioner McGrady wanted his objection noted.
Outdoor Storage, less than 5,000 sq. ft. It was suggested that in the R3 it be changed from a special use permit to a permitted use by right and add it to the R2MH district as a permitted use by right. Outdoor Storage, greater than 5,000 sq. ft. was suggested to be added to both R2MH and R3 as special use permits. Again Commissioner McGrady wanted it to be by special use permit for storage less than 5,000 sq. ft. in the R2MH district. Discussion followed. Agreement by consensus as special use permit.
Rural Family Occupation. It was suggested to add to R2MH district as a permitted use. Agreement by consensus.
Miniature Golf Course or Driving Tees/Ranges (operated for commercial purposes). Staff suggested adding to the R2MH district by special use permit. Agreement by consensus.
Outdoor Recreational Facilities. Staff suggested adding to the R2MH district by special use permit. Agreement by consensus.
School (Sports Instructional) It was suggested to add to the Office/Institutional district as a permitted use. Agreement by consensus.
Agreement by consensus.
The issue of Summer Camps was raised regarding shooting ranges. Anthony Starr felt that they should be allowed in pretty much all the districts as permitted use by right. There is a definition already established for camps in the definition section. There was some discussion regarding the zoning districts that summer camps are routinely found in.
Adult Day Care Facility . It was suggested to add to the R2MH district as a permitted use.
Agreement by consensus.
Ambulance Services. It was suggested to add to the R2MH district as a permitted use. Agreement by consensus.
Cemetery/Mausoleum/Columbarium (excluding crematoriums). Adding to the Office/Institutional district as a permitted use. Agreement by consensus.
Funeral Home or Crematorium. Adding to the Office/Institutional district as a permitted use. Agreement by consensus.
Place of Assembly, Small. Adding to the R3 as a special use permit and it was suggested that it be allowed in the R2MH as well. Agreement by consensus.
Police Station. Adding it to R2MH. Agreement by consensus.
Automobile and Equipment Service. It was suggested by staff to be added to the R3. It was also suggested that it be added to the R2MH and the R2. There was some discussion on this one. Commissioner McGrady felt that it should not be allowed in the R2 and the R2MH. Commissioner Williams felt that it should be allowed in the R2MH and the R3. That change was approved by consensus. So this will not be allowed in the R2.
Business, Professional and Public Offices. Staff suggested adding it to R3 with a
special permit only. It was suggested to allow as a permitted use in the R3,
R2, and R2MH.
Tire Recapping. Adding as a special use permit in R3. Agreement by consensus.
Urgent Care Clinic. Adding as a special use permit in R3. Agreement by consensus.
Motor Vehicles Sales or Leasing. It was suggested to add that as a special use permit in the R3 and R2MH. The Board wanted both these deleted, by consensus.
Open Air Market. It was suggested to add this in R3, R2, and R2MH with a special use permit. Agreement by consensus.
Produce Stand. Change from special use permit to permitted use by right for R2MH and R3, remain as a special use in R2. Agreement by consensus. Some discussion followed regarding the definition of “produce stand”. The Commissioners wanted the definition tightened.
Land Clearing Debris and Inert Debris Storage or Disposal. It was suggested to add as a special use permit in the R2MH. Agreement by consensus.
Self-Storage Warehousing. Currently is allowed in the
RC and GC districts. The Board took this
issue up about October with the current zoning ordinance.
By consensus the Board agreed to: R2 – delete the special use and take it out completely. Leave it in R2MH, R3, Office/Institutional, and Local Commercial as a special use permit. Leave it in all the other commercial districts as permitted by right as well as in Mixed Use.
Septic Tank and Related Services. Staff recommended it being allowed in the R3 as a special use permit. Agreement by consensus.
Waste Collection and Transfer Facility (Non-hazardous).
Chip Mill. Add under R3 as a special use permit. Agreement by consensus to leave it just in the Industrial District but to come up with a definition or a way to deal with the issue in Mills River and possibly others, so that they can be permitted.
Machining and Assembly Operations Limited.
Manufacturing and Production Operations Limited. See just above.
Research and Development Operations (Non-Hazardous).
Portable Storage Container. Adding to all the districts as a permitted use, except R1.
Commercial Issue 2: Intersection of
Commercial Issue 3:
Commercial Issue 4: Local Commercial Nodes along Upward Road.
Commercial Issue 4A: Local Commercial Nodes along Upward Road. Basically the only difference between this map and the previous map was that it was Community Commercial as opposed to Local Commercial. He explained to the Board that they could do either one or some combination thereof for Subject Area 2. Approval of 4A instead of 4, by consensus.
Commercial Issue 5: Local Commercial Nodes along Howard Gap and Sugarloaf Roads.
Commercial Issue 6: Local Commercial Nodes along
Commercial Issue 7: Local Commercial Nodes along
Chairman Moyer asked the Board to refer to the July 25 memo that has three additional areas, one proposed by Commissioner Young, one by Chairman Moyer and one by request of the residents. Planning staff left to go get a copy of that memo so it could be discussed.
Commercial Issue #8 –
Commercial Issue #9 –
Commercial Issue #10 –
Industrial Issue 1: Commercial Uses Permitted in the Industrial Zoning District.
Following discussion on this item, the Board went back
to Commercial Issue #7 and a new map was distributed.
Chairman Moyer asked staff to take a look at the other letters received and the areas on that road and see if there is a way to do a bigger district or clean this up because we don’t want to get into spot zoning. If there are others there we can tie together, we may be able to put together a bigger parcel and solve this problem.
Uses in the Industrial Zone – Commercial Uses Permitted in the Industrial Zoning District. Discussion followed. Commissioner McGrady stated he didn’t mind some of these uses as long as the Board makes a conscious decision allowing them as opposed to just allowing permitted by right. Commissioner McGrady proposed
Motor Sports Facility, Recreational by Special Use Permit
Outdoor Recreational by Special Use Permit
Park by Special Use Permit
He suggested changing that whole section in the Table (4. Recreational Uses) from Permitted by Right to Special Use Permit (page 3 of 7). Approval by consensus.
Commissioner McGrady again suggested the same under section 5. Educational and Institutional Uses in the table (page 4 of 7), changing Permitted by Right to Special Use Permit. Application for a special use permit would force a conscious decision. Folllowing discussion it was decided to change the following P’s (Permitted by Right) to S’s (Special Use Permit) in Industrial Zones: Ambulance Services, Cemetery/Mausoleum/Columbarium (excluding crematoriums), Childcare Facility, Club/Lodge, Government Offices, Place of Assembly both Large and Small, and Religious Institution. Approval by consensus.
Category 6. Business, Professional, and Personal Services. Commissioner McGrady felt that Category 6 and 7 were the most problematic areas in the industrial zones. He suggested either moving these all from Permitted to Special or either deleting them altogether. Much discussion followed with the Commissioners reviewing each one individually and approving the following:
Animal Shelter strike from Industrial Zone
Automobile and Equipment Service Special Use Permit (S)
Automobile Towing S
Broadcasting and Communications
Car Wash strike
Office: Business, Professional and Public strike
School (Technical, Trade and Business) S
Theater, Drive-In strike
Tire Recapping S
Category 7. Retail Trade.
Adult Book and Retail Merchandise Store S
Adult Theatre and Live Entertainment S
Convenience Store S
Entertainment Complex strike
Flea Market strike
Fuel Oil Distribution and Sales S
Landscaping Materials Sales and Storage S
Manufactured/Mobile Home Sales S
Motor Vehicle Sales or Leasing strike
Open Air Market strike
Parking Garage or
Truck Stop S
Category 8. Wholesale Trade
Wholesale Trade S
Category 9. Transportation, Warehousing,
Airport (Private) S
Airport (Public) S
Communication Facilities, Category 1 S
Communication Facilities, Category 2 S
Communication Facilities, Category 3 S
Hazardous Waste Disposal Facilities S
Land Clearing Debris and Inert Debris
Storage or Disposal S
Rail Transportation Facilities and
Support Activities P
Self-Storage Warehousing strike
Septic Tank and Related Services S
Transit and Ground Passenger
Truck Terminals P
Utility Substation P
Warehousing and Storage (Excluding
Warehousing of Hazardous Substances) P
Waste Collection and Transfer Facility
Waste Collection and Transfer Facility
Wastewater Treatment Plant P
Water Treatment Plant P
Category 10. Manufacturing & Industrial Uses
Approval of Category 10, 11, 12, and 13 by consensus.
Category 11. Temporary Uses.
Category 12. Temporary Structures.
Category 13. Agricultural Uses.
Industrial Issue 2: Industrial District Expansion in Northern Portion of County.
Industrial Issue 3: Industrial District Expansion in Eastern Portion of County.
Industrial Issue 4: Industrial Node in Etowah-Horseshoe Community.
Chairman Moyer called a brief recess.
Development Issue 1: Sign Regulations – Freestanding Signs.
Development Issue 2: Sign Regulations – Outdoor Advertising Signs (Billboards)
Development Issue 3: Traffic Impact Study.
Development Issue 4: Emergency Services Impact Report.
Development Issue 5: Development in Areas of Steep Slope & Floodplain.
Recommended Solution 1 – the County can provide rules that set a much lower density for areas that contain steep slope or floodplain. Each residential zoning district could be amended to indicate areas with slope 35% or greater or within the 100-year floodplain. Language for such a provision could be as follows:
“The maximum residential density for areas with slope 35.0% or greater or within the Special Flood Hazard Area shall be one dwelling unit per 3 acres.”
This language would appear in Article II of the LDC below each dimensional requirements table. This language would provide a more appropriate density for these areas and should not encourage overdevelopment.
Recommended Solution 2 – if the Board decides on provision for slope 45% or greater or within the 100-year floodplain, Staff recommends language for such a provision could be as follows:
“The maximum residential density for areas with slope 45.0% or greater or within the Special Flood Hazard Area shall be one dwelling unit per 5 acres.”
Following much discussion, it was the consensus of the Board to advertise both options and wait until after the public hearing to make a decision.
Development Issue 6: Density Bonus Credit.
Legal Issue 1:
At the Board of Commissioners’ Land Development Code
Residential Issue 3A: Suburban Overlay District
Alternative. The concern is that the
suburban overlay district is proposed to be applied to all lands currently
zoned R-40 and R-30. The recommended solution was to apply the suburban overlay
district to only those lands formerly zoned R-40 and located in the vicinity of
Residential Issue 10: Gated Communities.
Legal Issue 2: Nonconforming Commercial and Industrial Uses/Structures within the former Open Use (OU) Zoning District.
Chairman Moyer then referred to an additional memo
from Autumn Radcliff dated August 23 regarding Land Development Code – August
16, 2007 Planning Board’s Recommendations and Suggestions on proposed text and
map options, asking
3 & 3A – Suburban Overlay District – The Planning Board did not agree with
applying the Suburban Overlay only to lands formerly zoned R-40 and located in
the vicinity of
4 – Proposed R4 Zoning District – The Planning Board recommended that the
proposed R4 zoning district be applied to the
3. Residential Issue 6A – Subdivisions Reviewed and Approved by the Board of Commissioners – The Planning Board agreed with the Commissioners’ recommendation that major subdivisions with 300 or more lots be reviewed and approved by the Board of Commissioners, but did not recommend that these subdivisions be required to follow the Conditional Zoning District process. Staff would note that Conditional Zoning Districts are allowed in every zoning district and allow the Board to set conditions. A proposed subdivision would still have to meet all the basic requirements for subdivision approval.
4. Residential Issue 7 – Public Water and Sewer Requirements – The Planning Board recommended that the threshold on the number of lots/units be 300 to reflect the threshold for subdivisions that are reviewed and approved by the Board of Commissioners. The Planning Board suggested that subdivisions with 300 or more lots/units should have public or private water and sewer service. When this is not possible, the subdivision should try to pursue community wells and septic systems before allowing individual systems.
5. Residential Issue 8 – Off Site Access – The Planning Board suggested that, when a proposed subdivision has road frontage or existing off-site ROW of less than the 30 feet, the off-site access roads be required to meet the standards for subdivision roads based on the number of proposed lots.
6. Residential Issue 9 – Gated Communities – The Planning Board did not agree with a provision to prohibit gated residential subdivisions.
1. Commercial Issue 4 & 4A – Local Commercial Nodes along Upward Road – The Planning Board was concerned that until the community plan for this area is completed, a local commercial (LC) designation, as opposed to community commercial (CC), should be applied to Subject Areas 1 and 2.
1. Development Issue 5 – Development in Areas of Steep Slope and Floodplain – Based on the current recommendation for development issue 5, the Planning Board recommended that land within the Floodplain or slopes 45% or greater should have a density of 1 unit per 3 acre. The Planning Board did not agree with regulating slopes 35% or greater and suggested that the Board of Commissioners look at slopes in excess of 45%, for example 55% and 75% slopes.
2. Development Issue 6 – Density Bonus Credit – The Planning Board recommended that only lands with conservation easements be excluded from calculating density bonus credit.
Legal Issue 1 –
1. The Planning Board was concerned that any restrictions based on a predetermined threshold, such as a Traffic Impact Study, could be abused by developers to circumvent certain requirements by staying just below these thresholds. The Planning Board suggested that legal staff look at ways to require developers to disclose if they own or are acquiring adjacent property that would require them to meet proposed regulations if both properties are developed together or separately.
Chairman Moyer felt the Board had made some headway, taking care of gated communities, density bonus credit, the issue of 300 units/lots to be reviewed by the Board of Commissioners and requiring those to have public or private water and sewer service.
McGrady stated that the Board had received a lot of mail in the last few days
Chairman Moyer reminded everyone of a scheduled workshop on August 28. Any loose ends can be discussed at that time but that workshop will be mainly to discuss revenue options. The State passed a law which gives the Board of Commissioners the right to impose, with approval of the public through referendum, either a Land Transfer Tax (LTT) or a Sales Tax. The Board needs to discuss that issue and come to some agreement. Staff will make a presentation of all the information available to date and there will be a thorough discussion on August 28.
Commissioner McGrady made the motion to adjourn the meeting at All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Elizabeth W. Corn, Clerk to the Board William L. Moyer, Chairman