Ligonier zoning ordinance gets second look
The Ligonier Borough planning committee will recommend that council ask the planning firm that worked on its zoning ordinance to take a second look at the document.
At their first meeting on Monday night, committee members Pat Scanlon, James B. St. Clair and Matthew Smith voted unanimously to suggest that council ask Environmental Planning and Design LLC to provide a gratis review of its ordinance, which was adopted in 2010.
The committee made the decision after attorney Daniel Hewitt explained how a zoning appeal regarding the subdivision of Ruth Conrad's East Main Street property, which he was involved with last year, revealed “holes” in the ordinance.
“The issue that we ran into in the Conrad case was, in the process of going to the zoning hearing board, it became apparent that there were gaps, shall we say, in the borough's ordinance,” Hewitt said. “There were items that were not rationally progressive. There were definitions that didn't exist for terms that were used in the ordinance.”
Hewitt said some of the evidence used at the hearing showed that the ordinance does not provide lot dimensions for apartments, a land use in the village residential district.
The zoning hearing board ruled in favor of the landowner, he said.
Hewitt said it “may be worth opening the door with the consultant” to ask what it will do for the borough regarding the “glaring inconsistencies.”
Zoning officer Merle Musick said, though he did look at the ordinance quickly, he did notice some flaws in it as well.
In other business, the committee discussed its procedures, with Welty providing the state Municipalities Planning Code's list of powers and duties for borough planning agencies. Welty explained that since it is a committee, it can call meetings as needed. Scanlon said he would like the committee to set a deadline for submissions so the committee can review them prior to its meeting. Additionally, St. Clair requested that notes be kept during the meeting to keep track of who attends the meetings and what is discussed.
Former planning commissions members Patti Campbell and Dirk Matson are also serving on the committee. Campbell is the secretary, and Matson is an advisor.
During public comment, Richard Flickinger inquired about how the meeting was advertised. St. Clair said the meeting was mentioned at council's last meeting and posted on the borough's website. Flickinger said he got the impression that since the committee will not have regular meetings that there will not be public input on planning matters.
The committee held an executive session regarding litigation.
St. Clair said the committee will likely meet again at 7 p.m. April 28.
Nicole Chynoweth is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-850-2862 or nch email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- New Florence farmer honored for 4-H project involvement
- Ligonier council approves parking lot improvements
- Ligonier Valley board approves $1.7M deal for sale of Laurel Valley school building, property
- Lawsuit filed against Ligonier Township officials, residents
- YWCA recognizes Ligonier resident’s health and fitness contributions
- Ligonier mayor joins nationwide effort to recognize community service
- Ligonier tourism promoted at annual breakfast