March 22, 2023 Work Session Outcomes

Delta County Coalition representatives attended the BoCC closed work session on March 22 after submitting recommendations for the latest updates on the Land Use Code.  *Note there are many opportunities for public comment in sections under discussion.  Below are the updates made to the draft update Land Use Code:

  • Allowed vs Limited vs Site Plan Review: Commissioner Koontz stated that so far they have not found a fatal flaw with removing “site plan review” and putting all uses into either Allowed or Limited.  Discussion of the exact definition of Limited Use.  Discussion of traffic studies changed from required to discretionary for L.  Does L and SIte Plan Review / Permitted become the same thing?  The two are very close, as currently written, Limited is discretionary and could be denied even if all requirements are met.  Permitted or Site Plan Review requires county approval if all requirements are met.  Definition of L has not yet been reviewed in current revision process and may be adjusted to match site plan review non-discretionary.  DCC brought forward community concerns to retain Allowed-by-right.
  • Duplexes: Changed from allowed-by-right to Limited Use Permits.  
  • Single Family Residences and ADUs: kept as Allowed-by-right in line with DCC and community comments.
  • Communal living: Proposal to be separated from additional residences and moved from allowed-by-right to Limited Use Permits with notice required.  Commissioner comments about problems with “communes”.  Ongoing Discussion, opportunity for public input.
  • Additional Residences: Proposal to separate from Communal Living and change from allowed-by-right to Limited Use Permits.  Ongoing discussion, opportunity for public input.
  • Residential (Health) Treatment Facilities: Limited Use Permits with notice in smaller zones
  • Nursing Homes: designated Conditional Use Permits in all zones
  • Farm-worker Housing: proposed to be changed from Allowed-by-right to Limited Use Permit in all zones.  Discussion of possible allowed-by-right exemption under a certain threshold.  Flagged for further review.  Opportunity for public input.
  • Kennels: proposed to change from Allowed-by-right, to a threshold for commercial kennels of 6 dogs over 6 months old require Limited Use Permits, possible property line setbacks, discussion of performance standards to protect neighbors.
  • Place of assembly (grange halls, churches, wedding venues, etc): Changed from Allowed-by-right to Limited Use Permit.  For churches only, if more than 50 people capacity Limited Use Permit if less than 30 Allowed-by-right.
  • Schools: Changed to Limited Use Permit if more than 30 people capacity, allowed-by-right for under 30 students or people.
  • Child Care: proposed Allowed-by-right if less than 12 children to align with state statute.  Limited Use Permit for over 12 children.  State standards may also apply but administered by the state.
  • Cemeteries: Commercial cemeteries changed to Conditional Use Permits in all zones.  Home burials (non-commercial) are exempt and allowed by right in all zones.  State statute applies to home burials requiring filing a form with the county clerk within 30 days.  County attorney proposed to define home cemeteries to only include family members, Planning Director instead defined home burial as non-commercial (no payment for a burial plot) but not limited to direct family.  This aligns with DCC comments.
  • Storage Facilities: added to list of uses, set as Limited Use Permits in all zones. There was a discussion of clarifying definition to exclude a farmer storing hay in another farmer’s barn, etc.
  • Outdoor shooting range: Conditional Use Permits in all zones, clarified definition to ensure that all private personal shooting on private property is exempt and allowedThis is only for Commercial business shooting ranges.
  • Events: Separate one time events vs event venue with ongoing events.  Separate commercial events vs. personal events allowed.  Discussion of commercial events 0-150 people remains Allowed-by-right, 151-500 people Limited Use Permit, 500+ limited use permit. Discussion of economic importance of events in the county.  Ongoing extensive discussion flagged for next week.
  • Junk and Rubbish: Page 37 Clarifies that outdoor junk storage is covered in the Junk and Rubbish ordinance.
  • RV language: accepted old proposed Planning Commission draft language reducing use of RV while building home to only 24 months with proof of electrical and plumbing permits.  Flagged for further review.  Opportunity for public input.
  • Home business section: remains Allowed-by-right, but additional new standards including a single non-illuminated sign (this item flagged for reconsideration for dimly lit externally illuminated signs), all outdoor storage must be screened from county roads with a “fence out” approach for neighbors.  Intent is that home business is not confined to inside the building/home but also allowed outside with storage screened (per DCC inquiry and comment).  Access must be the same access as the home.  If significant noise, dust, or other impacts it becomes Limited Use.

Please send emails to your planning commissioner about any above matters that impact you so that your concerns can be considered during ongoing discussions and decisions made for the Land Use Code. 

Link to redline LUC document

Proposed Schedule for additional worksessions (tentative):

  • March 29th 3-5pm
  • April 5th 3-5pm
  • April 28th 3-5
  • May 8th 9am-11am final cleanup (tentative)
  • May 10th joint work session with PC
  • May 16th BoCC vote to send the final document to the PC
  • PC has 30 days to review and return to BoCC
    14 day notice prior to BoCC final hearing and vote

*BoCC chair Wendell Koontz reiterated to the public that the BoCC is responsible for the Land Use Code, not Carl Holm the planning director.