Panel limits updating of zoning ordinance Committee will focus on industrial areas

June 25, 1998|By John Murphy | John Murphy,SUN STAFF

A committee charged with reviewing Carroll County's zoning ordinance dropped plans last night to overhaul the entire law in favor of updating only the sections regulating light industrial and commercial use.

After struggling in recent months to define the scope of the review, the six-member committee agreed that a full scale update of zoning laws would be too complicated.

The committee will focus on sections in the zoning ordinance defining light industrial and commercial sites.

The goal of the committee's update is to identify potential industrial sites that will attract business to the county. Business provides slightly less than 12 percent of Carroll's tax base -- the lowest business-to-residential ratio in the region.

"You are making it more complex than it has to be," Commissioner Donald I. Dell told the committee last night after it spent more than an hour grappling with how to conduct a review.

Dell asked the committee to keep its goals simple. Otherwise, he said, the committee may never finish its work.

The committee agreed.

Committee members are: Thomas Hiltz and Ed Wheatley of the planning commission; James Schumacher and Hoby Wolf of the Board of Zoning Appeals; and Louna Primm and Mike Burden of the Economic Development Commission.

The County Commissioners created the committee this year after the planning commission rejected all but 90 acres of the 1,069 acres recommended for industrial and commercial use.

The nine sites had been recommended by a county economic development panel to be included in the county's master plan update, a blueprint for the county's growth.

The planning commission rejected most of the sites in response to opposition from the public and some of the incorporated towns who felt they were not allowed input in the selection process.

Among the sites rejected was a 172-acre county-owned parcel next to Westminster Air Business Center.

The committee will meet at 7 a.m. July 6 in the county office building, 225 N. Center St.

Pub Date: 6/25/98

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