Plan would ease limits on 'in-law' apartments Owners would be allowed to rent to other than kin

November 24, 1998|By Brenda J. Buote | Brenda J. Buote,SUN STAFF

The Board of County Commissioners voted last week to hold a public hearing on proposed zoning amendments that would give homeowners who have "in-law" apartments the right to rent them to people other than relatives.

Commissioners W. Benjamin Brown and Richard T. Yates agreed on a draft of the legislation Wednesday, and ordered that a public hearing be scheduled.

Not enough time remains in the current board's term to advertise and hold a public hearing on the amendments, steps that must be taken before the commissioners can vote on the proposed zoning changes.

If adopted, the amendments would allow homeowners in residential and conservation zones to build and rent "in-law" apartments. Under current regulations, such apartments are banned.

The proposed amendments would also allow property owners in agricultural districts to rent tenant houses to people who are not relatives. The tenant houses now must be used by a relative of the property owner or someone who works the landowner's farm.

Commissioner Donald I. Dell, who owns a Westminster dairy farm, had asked that property owners in agricultural districts also be given the right to subdivide their property so they can sell the tenant house and adjoining land.

"This is something I feel very strongly about," he said. "I feel the county is already too involved in telling people what they can and cannot do with their property."

Dell, who has two tenant houses on his property, recused himself from the vote.

"I don't want anyone thinking I'm trying to get something for myself," Dell said.

He plans to seek legal advice on whether he can act on the legislation.

Pub Date: 11/24/98

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