City Council Minutes

Thursday, March 15,2001



ST. GEORGE CITY COUNCIL MINUTES REGULAR MEETING MARCH 15, 2001, 4:00 P.M. CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS PRESENT: Mayor Daniel McArthur Councilmember Rod Orton Councilmember Suzanne Allen Councilmember Bob Whatcott Councilmember Larry Gardner City Manager Gary Esplin City Attorney Jonathan Wright City Recorder Gay Cragun EXCUSED: Councilmember Sharon Isom OPENING: Mayor McArthur called the meeting to order and welcomed all in attendance. The flag salute was led by Councilmember Whatcott and the invocation was offered by Councilmember Orton. Mayor McArthur invited several Scouts from Troop 762 to introduce themselves. Several Scout leaders presented Mayor McArthur with an award in recognition of his outstanding support of Scouting. HISTORICAL SOCIETY PRESENTATION: Royce Jones, Ann Shaw, and Verdell Hinton, officers of the Washington County Historical Society, advised that the Society has produced an audio tape and CD describing historical sites around Washington County. The tapes and CDs will be donated to area schools and libraries and will be marketed for sale by the Travel Council. PRESENTATION BY POLICE DEPARTMENT: Police Chief Marlon Stratton presented Angie Blackham with a certificate of appreciation on behalf of the Police Department for her assistance in resolving 49 vehicle burglaries by reporting suspicious activity in her neighborhood. Police Chief Marlon Stratton presented Ted Hurst with a certificate of appreciation on behalf of the Police Department for his honesty in turning in a wallet he found which contained $699 in cash. Mr. Hurst was also recognized by Mayor McArthur as employee of the week two weeks ago. Mayor McArthur advised that Judy Hart was recognized as the outstanding City employee this week. Police Chief Marlon Stratton advised a certificate of appreciation on behalf of the Police Department will be delivered to Christopher Stratton, a 12 year old who assisted the Police Department in the investigation of a burglary. CONSENT CALENDAR Consider approval of the financial statement for February, 2001. City Manager Gary Esplin explained that low fund balances in the Electric Department and Golf Course funds were due to the increased cost of purchasing power on the open market and bad weather which has caused a decrease in golf course revenue. Mr. Esplin explained that City staff feel the City has a sufficient supply of power to meet the needs of the community this summer, but recommends a power rate adjustment for the four month summer period. The same amount of power which the City paid $1,000,000 for a year ago now costs $7,000,000 and is as cheap as can be found on the open market. Staff also recommends hiring a Water and Power Conservation Officer to assist residents with water and power conservation. Mr. Esplin explained that the deficit in the golf course enterprise fund will not be able to be made up as the number of players is down from last year due to bad weather and competition from other courses. The City, however, is being proactive in marketing the courses to attract tourists. St. George City Council Minutes March 15, 2001 Page Two Councilmember Gardner commented that the impact funds came in at different percentages than projected, and inquired as to the disparity in the different accounts. Mr. Esplin explained the difference was due to commercial vs. residential impact fees. A motion was made by Councilmember Orton and seconded by Councilmember Gardner to approve the financial statement as presented. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. AWARD OF BID: Consider award of bid for crushing of asphalt and concrete at the Reuse Center. Purchasing Agent Sue Swensen presented three bids received: B. Wallis Industries $62,900 Progressive Contracting $72,100 Snowfield Rock Products $75,000 She recommended award of the bid to the low bidder, B. Wallis Industries, in the amount of $62,900. A motion was made by Councilmember Whatcott and seconded by Councilmember Orton to award the bid to B. Wallis Industries in the amount of $62,900. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. Councilmember Allen advised that area residents would like to have an opportunity to see the crushing operation as they are concerned about its effect on their neighborhood. Ms. Swensen advised she would relay this information to the successful bidder. SET PUBLIC HEARING: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held March 13, 2001, recommended a public hearing be scheduled for April 19, 2001 at 5:00 p.m. to consider approval of an amended PD zone to allow for the transfer of nine units from Webb Point to Sienna Canyon on the east end of Webb Hill. Leucadia Corporation is the applicant. A motion was made by Councilmember Allen and seconded by Councilmember Gardner to schedule the public hearing as recommended by the Planning Commission. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. APPROVE DEVELOPMENT OF WEBB POINT ON WEBB HILL: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held March 13, 2001 recommended approval of a hillside development permit for Webb Point based on the Hillside Review Board’s recommendations. The St. George City Council Minutes March 15, 2001 Page Three Hillside Review Board met on site January 24, 2001 and recommended approval subject to (1) 40% of grade above and below lots are not be disturbed; (2) provide additional information to address desert landscape and surface water runoff; (3) preserve archeological features; and (4) other issues be resolved by staff. He advised the plat will need to show 40% non-development and the not-to-be disturbed areas, and the developer will need to provide information regarding the desert landscape and how they plan to preserve the petroglyphs which are located in future Lot No. 1. Mr. Bradley advised the Planning Commission also recommended approval of a conditional use permit to allow 21 single family homes to be clustered as provided for in the R-1-40 zone. 30 units were originally approved as part of the conceptual master plan, but through a cluster concept, the homes may be built in more suitable locations within the project rather than spreading them all over the hillside. Mr. Bradley advised the Planning Commission also recommended approval of the preliminary plat for Webb Point Subdivision. The applicants propose a private road through the development to reduce the amount of cut and to lessen the setback requirements. The applicants also requested a sidewalk waiver. The Planning Commission also recommended a sidewalk waiver for both sides of the road. Staff recommends at least a trail be placed on one side of the road. The applicants may wish to dedicate portions of the land to the City, depending on the outcome of the PD amendment and whether the development would be credited for the open space requirement. Councilmember Gardner commented that the Stonecliff project was required to have a sidewalk on one side, and inquired if a sidewalk could be placed if the terrain allows without a tremendous amount of expense. Jeff Morby, representing Leucadia Corporation, advised part of the City’s trail is located on Leucadia property. He advised Leucadia feels the sidewalk waiver is appropriate as a trail has already been provided within the system. There are only 21 lots in the subdivision and a sidewalk becomes critical to the setbacks and would increase cuts on the hill which could not be hidden. He advised the homes will be blended into the hillside and regulated in color and design through CC&Rs. A motion was made by Councilmember Gardner and seconded by Councilmember Whatcott to approve the hillside development permit for Webb Point subject to the recommendations of the Planning Commission and Hillside Review Board. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. A motion was made by Councilmember Gardner and seconded by Councilmember Allen to approve the conditional use permit to allow 21 single family homes to be clustered. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. Councilmember Gardner explained that in the original trade of properties with Leucadia and BLM, the City agreed to allow development of the Webb Point and Sienna Canyon areas in exchange for keeping the remainder of Webb Hill free of development, and it has invested money to keep most of the hillside protected. A motion was made by Councilmember Gardner to approve the preliminary plat for Webb Point Subdivision with the sidewalk waiver as requested. St. George City Council Minutes March 15, 2001 Page Four Councilmember Whatcott commented that the requirement for 40% non-development should be placed on the plat. A motion was made by Councilmember Gardner and seconded by Councilmember Whatcott to approve the preliminary plat subject to the recommendations of the Planning Commission and that areas of non-development be identified on the plat. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held march 13, 2001, recommended approval of a conditional use permit to allow student housing for up to 49 students in the former Color Country Care Center located as 233 South 1000 East east of Dixie State College subject to the following conditions: (1) a minimum of 14 parking spaces be provided on site; (2) parking stickers from the College be provided for the students; and (3) a review be made of the conditional use if the stickers are no longer available from the College. Monte Holm is the applicant. Mayor McArthur inquired if the College approved of the parking arrangement. Mr. Holm advised that he visited extensively with the College as well as researched the parking situations on surrounding properties. He advised that 14 spaces will provide more than enough parking for his tenants, but in any event the College will allow his tenants to park in the College parking lot across the street if need be. A motion was made by Councilmember Whatcott and seconded by Councilmember Orton to approve the conditional use permit subject to the recommendations of the Planning Commission. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised the Planning Commission, at its meeting held March 13, 2001, recommended approval of a conditional use permit for a church building located at 100 North and Dixie Drive. The LDS Church is the applicant. A motion was made by Councilmember Orton and seconded by Councilmember Whatcott to approve the conditional use permit as requested. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held March 13, 2001, recommended approval of a private elementary-age school for up to 10 students, including the applicant’s children, in the home at 699 Escalante Drive with a review after one year. Mark and Joni Allen are the applicants, whose request is to allow up to 20 children. St. George City Council Minutes March 15, 2001 Page Five Mayor McArthur advised he was in receipt of seven letters in opposition to the request. Mark and Joni Allen, applicants, distributed a brochure to the Mayor and Council and advised they desired to give children ages 6-12 a classical Christian education with an LDS emphasis which is currently not available in St. George. They advised they polled their neighborhood about their proposal, and distributed a copy of a map of their neighborhood indicating which neighbors approved of or were in opposition to the request. They explained their backyard is enclosed by a 6 foot block wall and the school will be held in the lower portion of their home which has three exits, with two rooms dedicated to the school. Because this is a school, the children will be inside learning and will not create a noise problem. They explained the children would not be allowed to climb the rocks and boulders located in the neighborhood as they will be required to remain on the school/home property for insurance reasons. They advised they had more than ample space for the school and outside requirements. They explained that additional traffic and safety concerns for neighborhood children seemed to be the main areas of concern of the neighborhood, but the time for dropping off and picking up children attending the private school differ from the hours the bus picks up the neighborhood children attending public school, and therefore no conflict will exist, and not a lot of new traffic will be created in any event. They advised there is currently a home in Bloomington which serves as a preschool and daycare for 60 children, 30 in the morning and 30 in the afternoon, and what they are requesting would not create anywhere near this volume of traffic. Councilmember Allen inquired about recess time. Mrs. Allen replied one 30 minutes recess would be provided at lunch time and at this time the children would be permitted to play in the backyard. Mayor McArthur inquired of City Attorney Jonathan Wright if the State regulated the number of children permitted in a private school. Mr. Wright responded that a conditional use permit is within the discretion of the Mayor and City Council and is subject to their judgment as to an appropriate number as far as impact on the neighborhood. He explained that all schools and churches are conditional uses and require a conditional use permit. Mr. and Mrs. Allen advised there would no school on Fridays. Councilmember Gardner inquired if the children would be allowed to go home for lunch, and if the Allen’s were in possession of any statistics which would indicate how many children from one family would attend the private school. Mrs. Allen replied that two of the children attending the school would be hers, and perhaps two children from each family would attend, thus lowering the amount of cars picking up and dropping the children off. Mr. Allen advised that some families might also carpool. Mrs. Allen advised they would like at least two certified teachers for 20 children. Mr. Allen advised that when he taught at Pine View, he taught 36 children jammed into a double wide trailer, and their home offers more than sufficient space for the private school. Councilmember Gardner expressed difficulty with the request because it centered around placing a different use in a residential neighborhood. He expressed concern about allowing neighbors their rights of privacy and enjoyment of their property. Mr. Allen replied that the City’s ordinance allows for a school in a residential neighborhood as a conditional use. He explained the situation would be temporary as they would like to eventually move the school to a more permanent location. Mayor McArthur explained a conditional use is required because a church or school in a residential neighborhood may impact a neighborhood in an adverse way. St. George City Council Minutes March 15, 2001 Page Six Mr. Allen replied that their private school is no different than the private daycare with 60 children. Mrs. Allen advised they would not be altering their home in any way nor creating a health or safety hazard. Councilmember Gardner inquired if approval by the State was required for the private school. Mrs. Allen replied that approval was not required, but certain conditions must be met such as requiring immunization records for all children, and providing an adequate amount of room for the students. Mayor McArthur inquired of City Attorney Jonathan Wright the reasons upon which a conditional use permit could be denied. Mr. Wright replied the criteria and findings for a conditional use permit are set forth in the Zoning Ordinance, and he then read them. Councilmember Orton commented that the Planning Commission recommendation for approval was made on a 4-2 vote. He asked for an opinion from City staff. Associate Planner Mark Bradley explained the Allens’ original request was for up to 10 students, but after the Fire Marshall’s inspection and recommendation that would allow up to 20 students, the Allens increased their request for up to 20 students. He stated that staff feels an appropriate number would be 10 to 12 students because of the overall impact on homes in the area and the nature of the residential community. Councilmember Orton commented that one difference between this request and the daycare with 60 children is the Allens’ home is located on a dead-end street, and the daycare is located on a corner and has access from three different directions. David Williams advised he lived on Escalante Drive diagonally across the street from the Allens and also owns another lot on the street and has another in escrow. He presented a petition signed by 14 area residents in opposition to the request. He advised the use is also prohibited by the subdivision’s CC&Rs. City Attorney Jonathan Wright advised that CC&Rs cannot be considered by the City Council. Mr. Williams replied that every property in Bloomington is governed by CC&Rs. Mayor McArthur explained that federal law makes the enforcement of CC&Rs a civil matter. Mr. Williams advised there are state laws governing schools, i.e. cafeteria, classroom size, etc. Mr. Wright explained those were administrative rules for public schools and not applicable in this case. However, the Allens would have to abide by any code or regulation applicable to private schools. The issue before the City Council, however, is more of a land use issue as opposed to whether or not they can meet the requirements of any code. Marie Anderson advised many neighbors in the area have swimming pools which create a safety hazard for children. She expressed concern the children would climb the rocks and boulders in the neighborhood, and that the private school would be a safety hazard as it would be within an aircraft flight pattern. She requested that the City Council take the administrative code into consideration when making its decision. An unidentified man advised that the pictures of the area presented by the City do not reflect the true conditions on Escalante Drive and that the Allens, while they are good neighbors, misstated many things in trying to gain approval for the school, and the lot upon which their home is located is not large. He advised he has a large, steep and treacherous driveway which attracts children on bicycles. He advised he purchase his home in this area because of its privacy and based upon St. George City Council Minutes March 15, 2001 Page Seven the CC&Rs, and he wondered about his property values if a commercial business is approved on a private street. He advised another problem is there is no curb and gutter and neighborhood children have to walk in the street to catch the school bus. Councilmember Whatcott advised the Allens’ lot is 13,000 square foot and is not a small lot. Mayor McArthur advised that Escalante Drive is a public street, not private. Lee Case advised he has been an educator for 12 years and was approached by the Allens to be a teacher in their facility, and he found out only recently the school was proposed for their home. He expressed concern about the safety of children riding their bicycles in the street, the amount of traffic which would be created by this private school, and the attitude of parents who drop off and pick up their children. He stated the use did not fit in the neighborhood, and proposed the City Council postpone making its decision until the facility and access issues are examined, or deny the request. An unidentified man advised his home would be affected most by the school, and he thought the school was a good idea and 10 to 12 students would not significantly affect traffic. Mark Allen advised he was a professional appraiser and property values would not be diminished by the private school. Mrs. Allen advised they met all City requirements and the private school is a legitimate home business. She advised they would like to have enough students to make the school economically feasible. Ideally, they would like to move to a site in a low traffic area and begin with 25-30 students. Councilmember Orton commented that the City Council, if it approved the conditional use permit, would be giving the neighbors time to see how the school works in the neighborhood for a limited time, while also giving the Allens time to find a permanent location. City Attorney Jonathan Wright advised that unless the City Council put a time limitation on the approval, the school could be located in the Allens’ home indefinitely. Mr. Allen advised they would accept a limited time period as it is not their intention to have the school located in their home permanently. Councilmember Allen advised that if legitimate problems are identified after investigation, a conditional use permit can be revoked at any time. Mrs. Allen advised she would make a condition of enrollment a rule that the children are confined to their property unless they have proper supervision. Recess would not be a free-for-all, but would be contained on their property and supervised, and the children would not be walking in the streets as their parents would be picking them up and dropping them off. Councilmember Gardner inquired of the Allens if the number of children requested was flexible. Mrs. Allen replied they would prefer 20 children. Councilmember Whatcott stated he felt an important part of education was socialization, and a school with only 10 children would not provide the social skills necessary to cope in the world. He stated he leaned toward approving 20 children rather than 10 children. Councilmember Orton inquired of City staff the number of traffic trips per day estimated for a neighborhood with a dead end street, and was advised this figure was 10 trips per single family home per day. Councilmember Gardner advised this would be the same as adding one more home to the street if each parent delivered two children. St. George City Council Minutes March 15, 2001 Page Eight Councilmember Orton advised in his opinion the request would not hurt neighborhood or property values, and there are currently many of these schools all over the community in the form of preschools or day care. Therefore it would be difficult to deny this request and approve another. He stated that while being sensitive to the neighborhood, it has been customary to approve these requests. Councilmember Gardner stated that initially he was hesitant to impose a private school in this neighborhood, but as he listened to the proposal and considered the consistency in which the application of the law and the City’s ordinances must be applied, the City Council must be careful to do what is appropriate. While the neighborhood has a right to continue their quality of life, the applicants also have a right to do certain things in their home consistent with what has been done in other areas of the City. Protection is given in the year’s review to make sure the use fits in the neighborhood and guidelines imposed. He stated that while traffic is always a concern, typically it is overstated. He made a motion to approve the conditional use permit for up to 20 children with a review in one year. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Whatcott. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. PRELIMINARY PLAT: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held March 13, 2001, recommended approval of the preliminary plat for Anasazi Hills Phase III. A motion was made by Councilmember Gardner and seconded by Councilmember Allen to approve the preliminary plat. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. FINAL PLAT: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held March 13, 2001 recommended approval of the final plat for Cloverland Subdivision. J.R. Jensen is the applicant and Don Leavitt is the agent. A motion was made by Councilmember Allen and seconded by Councilmember Whatcott to approve the final plat and authorize the Mayor to sign it. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. FINAL PLAT: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held March 13, 2001, recommended approval of the final plat for Pine View Commercial Center. Kent Garrett is the agent. A motion was made by Councilmember Allen and seconded by Councilmember Whatcott to approve the final plat and authorize the Mayor to sign it. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: St. George City Council Minutes March 15, 2001 Page Nine Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. REVISED FINAL PLAT: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held March 13, 2001, recommended approval of the revised final plat for Sedona Hills subdivision. The revised final plat is to allow phasing. The original final plat which was approved by the City Council on January 18, 2001 with 72 units has not yet been recorded. This request is for Phase I with 35 units. Vince Clayton is the agent. A motion was made by Councilmember Whatcott and seconded by Councilmember Orton to approve the final plat and authorize the Mayor to sign it. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. Mayor McArthur invited Scouts from Troop 751 to introduce themselves. PUBLIC HEARING/ZONE CHANGE/ORDINANCE: Public hearing to consider a request for a zone change from RE-37.5 Residential Estates to R-1-10 Single Family Residential on approximately one-half acre located at 750 North and about 1200 West. Gary Carter/Rowland Stone, applicants. Community Development Director Bob Nicholson advised staff feels the area in question is in transition. The General Plan calls for the area to be low density residential, but eventually will see up to four units per acre. The applicant is proposing two half-acre lots, but the neighbors are in opposition to the request with their main concern being the commercial development along Sunset Blvd. creeping south to this property. The applicant owns Rowland Stone. Historically, City Creek Wash has been the dividing line between commercial and residential zoning in this area. The Planning Commission recommended denial, advising zoning of his entire piece of property up to City Creek Wash as R-1-10 or to hold -off. City Attorney Jonathan Wright advised there is no access to the remaining RE37.5 property if the property were divided. Mr. Nicholson responded that Mr. Carter would work with adjoining property owners to develop a subdivision in the future. Mr. Bradley advised that the applicant would have room to put in a road, but right now is proposing access through an easement or through Rowland Stone. Councilmember Allen commented that access to a residential lot from a commercial area on a major collector road did not make sense. City Attorney Jonathan Wright commented he did not understand why the applicant was requesting a zone change for a small portion of his property, and if the applicant is going to transition the entire parcel to R-1-10, then why not zone the entire parcel R-1-10 now. He stated that from a legal perspective this was a spot zoning