11/16/09 — Commissioners agenda

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Commissioners agenda

By Steve Herring
Published in News on November 16, 2009 1:46 PM

On Tuesday, the Wayne County commissioners will have their second reading of proposed changes to the county's mobile home park ordinance that will give them the final say-so on plat approval.

Changes in the amended ordinance would apply to new mobile home parks only unless an existing one is changed.

Commissioners will be briefed on the agenda at 8 a.m. and the meeting will start at 9 a.m. in their boardroom on the fourth floor of the county courthouse annex.

A mobile home park is different from a mobile home subdivision that is regulated by the subdivision ordinance. In a park, three or more mobile homes are located on rented lots, while in a subdivision the homeowner owns the lot.

The plats would be reviewed by the Planning Board that could recommend approval, deny it outright or give conditional approval. In cases of denial or conditional approval, developers would be able to appeal directly to commissioners should they disagree the decision.

The options give developers more appeals options, commissioners say. However, Commissioner Steve Keen, who is also a member of the Planning Board, argues there is still no appeal past commissioners.

Along with the need for appeals of commissioner's decisions, Keen has said commissioners should provide written statements as to why a plat was denied. Such statements would let developers know what they need to do in order for the project to win approval. The Planning Board currently provides such information when it denies a mobile home park plat, he said.

Keen put forth a similar argument when commissioners took control of subdivision approval. His efforts failed in both cases to require that the board provide a written explanation when it rejects a plat.

The need for Tuesday's second reading and vote was triggered at the board's Nov. 3 meeting because commissioners did not have a full board. Commissioner Andy Anderson was out of the country.

As such, it is still possible that commissioners could make further changes to the proposal.

During the first reading, commissioners talked about adding a sentence stipulating that their motions include their reasoning for rejecting a plat. However, the proposal did not resurface and was not included in Commissioner Jack Best's motion to approve the ordinance as written.

County Attorney Borden Parker told the board that if a plat meets the rules, then it lacks the discretion to turn it down. Commissioners would have to approve the plat, he said. Then, if they have a problem with a portion of the ordinance, they could go back and address that specific area of the ordinance, Parker said.

In other business Tuesday:

* The board will be asked to proclaim Nov. 22-28 as Farm-City Week and the month as Adoption Awareness Month.

* The commissioners will consider a request from the Goldsboro-Wayne Transportation Authority to help fund an Administration Operations Facility Planning and Needs Assessment Study. The Authority operates the GATEWAY transit system. The study will examine whether the county, city of Goldsboro and GATEWAY should combine their vehicle maintenance under one operation.