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APPROVED 8/2/00

BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS' REGULAR MEETING

March 15, 2000

1:30 p.m.

Harris Hall Main Floor

 

Commissioner Peter Sorenson presided with Commissioner Bill Dwyer, Bobby Green, Sr. and Anna Morrison present.  Cindy Weeldreyer was excused.  County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, Assistant County Counsel Stephen Vorhes and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.

 

10. PUBLIC HEARINGS

 

a. PUBLIC HEARING AND ORDER 00-3-15-5 Authorizing the Transfer of Surplus County Owned Real Property Identified as Assessor's Map #19-01-14-23-05600 (Located on Moss Street, North of 37 East Main Street, Lowell, OR) to the City of Lowell for Public Purposes.

 

Jeff Turk, Management Services, stated this matter was a request by the City of Lowell to transfer County owned property to them that was acquired through tax foreclosure.  He noted the City had made the request of the properties adjacent to the City’s Greenway Park as a possible use of a covered bridge museum. He said it was acquired through tax foreclosure in 1998 and at the time it was acquired, there was $12,000 in delinquent taxes.  He added there is a current assessed value of approximately $23,000.  He noted the transfer would occur pursuant to ORS 271,339 with the deed restriction that the property be used for public purposes.  He noted a minor change in the statute by the legislators last year allowed for public use restriction to expire after 20 years.

 

Dwyer asked about putting a restriction in that if it is not used for a public purpose it revert back to Lane County.

 

Turk responded that there is nothing that would preclude the County from making the restriction into perpetuity.

 

Commissioner Sorenson opened up the Public Hearing.

 

Mayor Warren Weathers, 29 S. Alder, Lowell, brought a diagram to show the Board.  He noted the state gave them a grant for a park.

 

Sorenson asked Weathers if he objected to a provision that stated if the property were sold, the money from the sale would revert to Lane County as opposed to the City of Lowell.

 

Weathers stated he did not object to the terms.

 

There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Sorenson closed the Public Hearing.

 

MOTION: to approve Option B for ORDER 00-3-15-5.

 

Dwyer MOVED, Morrison SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 4-0.

 

b. SECOND READING AND PUBLIC HEARING Ordinance PA 1140 Renaming a Portion of Holm Lane, a Private Road, to Winding Way (18-02-20).

 

Bob  Ezell, Land Management, reported the road naming is by petition of the landowners.  He said the issue is Winding Way connecting to Braven Road.  He said the petitioners wanted a continuous named road, Winding Way, instead of a portion being Holm Lane.  He noted the Pleasant Hill Fire Department recommended approval and they have posted the road as required by Lane Manual and statutes.

 

Commissioner Sorenson opened up the Public Hearing.

 

Harry J. Groos, 85504 Holm, stated he is the next door neighbor.  He said the change affects him as well.  He noted the reason for doing the change is for safety.  He added there is confusion about the roads.

 

William Schoonhoven, 35457 Brabhan, Pleasant Hill, stated he lives at the bottom of Winding Way and favors this.  He said he has a strong safety concern where Zephyr ends and Winding Way is separated.  He reported it has become a place where 4-wheel-drive vehicles are going through and is dangerous.  He suggested placing boulders so it would not be accessible.

 

There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Sorenson closed the Public Hearing.

 

MOTION: to approve Ordinance PA 1140.

 

Dwyer MOVED, Morrison SECONDED.

 

Dwyer requested Public Works to look into the boulder situation.

 

ROLL CALL VOTE: 4-0.

 

d. PUBLIC HEARING AND FINAL ORDER 00-3-15-6 The Vacation and Conveyance of Lane County’s Interest in the McFarland Cemetery Property Located in Cottage Grove, as Described in Book 106, Page 133, Lane County Oregon Deed Records, to the Cottage Grove Historical Society, the Cemetery Being in the Northwest Quarter of Section 28, Township 20 South, Range 3 West of the Willamette Meridian and Adopting Findings of Fact (20-03-28-20-1400).

 

Ezell reported the County acquired the property in 1914 from D.G. McFarland with a stipulation that it be used for cemetery purposes.  He said the size of the tract is .62 acres and there are graves on the site.  He said the purpose of the hearing was to determine whether the County should vacate its interest in the tract and approval of conveyance of the land.  He noted the cemetery site was vacated after a public hearing, February 10, 1999 and was proceeding to transfer, when it was decided that before the County vacate their interest they do maintenance on the site.  He reported the Order to Vacate was rescinded and subsequently there was maintenance provided by the Cottage Grove Historical Society and through Jeff Turk, Management Services.  He said there are provisions in the statute transferring land.  He added that there has to be a private non-profit organization committing for the continued maintenance and care of the facility.  He said Lloyd Williams, President of the Cottage Grove Historical Society has provided a letter to the Board that states the intent of the society is to care and maintain the site. 

 

Ezell reported that Weeldreyer has been involved with the society and the proposed transfer.  He added, subsequent to the Board approving this order and transfer, the City of Cottage Grove would have to concur to the resolution and direction.  He said the order to vacate the lands is dependent on any action of support by the City of Cottage Grove.  He noted the Board has the option to vacate the interest in the cemetery and authorize transfer to the property to the Cottage Grove Historical Society or deny the vacation or continue the proceedings.  He reported that all legal notices in the newspaper and mailings have been provided.  He said Public Works Director, John Goodson, recommended Option 1, vacating the County’s interest in the property and proceeding with the transfer of interest to the Cottage Grove Historical Society.

 

Ezell explained that the Order is set up so if the Board approves it, it will be held until the City of Cottage Grove takes a similar action.  He said it would then be recorded into the commissioners’ journals.

 

Dwyer said he had concerns about conveying County property, and then someone will decide to change the use and the County will lose.

 

Turk mentioned that there is a stipulation in the original deed from when the County acquired the property in 1914 stating that it had to be used for cemetery purposes and that would carry through.  He noted that it would be referenced in the County’s quitclaim deed that this property needs to be used consistently with the original cemetery purpose.

 

Sorenson asked if there could be a provision in the deed that prohibits the city from transferring the property and if they did, it would revert back to Lane County.  He didn’t think the Board would be against a transfer to another entity that was a non-profit entity.  He said they would be concerned about transferring to a for-profit entity.

 

Marc Kardell, Assistant County Counsel, explained that the restriction in the deed is to be used for cemetery purposes and is to provide for the continuing maintenance and care of the cemetery and its associated facilities.

 

Van Vactor stated that Lane County was fortunate to have a party that is willing to take over the obligation.  He cautioned about a reversion clause.

 

Commissioner Sorenson opened the Public Hearing.

 

Gary Williams, President, Cottage Grove Historical Society, said they are excited about receiving the cemetery.  He noted it is a small parcel of land and there are 42 individuals buried in the cemetery taking up half of the space.  He added there is a fenced area that holds the boundary of the cemetery.  He said there are areas outside of the fenced area that are steep terrain.  He said it is not their intent to go into any development or improvements beyond repair of the cemetery tombstones, the fences and park benches.

 

Sorenson noted that Weeldreyer was ill and it was her intent to have the Board approve this matter.

 

MOTION:  to approve ORDER 00-3-15-6.

 

Morrison MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 4-0.

 

e. PUBLIC HEARING AND FINAL ORDER 00-3-15-7 Vacation of a Portion of the East-West Public Alley, Located in Block 20 of Glenada, as Platted and Recorded in Volume W, Page 261, Lane County, Oregon Deed Records, Located in the Northwest Quarter (NW ) of the Southwest Quarter (SW ) of Section 35, Township 18 South, Range 12 West of the Willamette Meridian (18-12-35-32).

 

Ezell reported that the landowner on each side of the alley had petitioned the County to vacate the alley.  He noted the plat was platted in 1889 and in that time, the alley had never been open for public travel as it had coastal brush in it. 

 

Ezell stated there was an objection to the vacation petition by the landowner Judy L. Carr Robertson.  He read her letter of objection into the record.  He stated there was no obstruction of any view because of the elevation drop.  He said the Board has to take into account density and whether or not building across the alley, would have any more affect on density. He said the Public Works Director has no objection, as it is not used for any type of transportation and had not been open to the public.  He added the ground is steep and would not support travel

 

Ezell noted that they have provided all of the statutory requirements and notices by posting and publication by mail.  He said the Pubic Works Director recommended that the petition be approved.

 

Commissioner Sorenson opened up the Public Hearing.

 

Rob Ward, 5441 Huckleberry Lane, Dunes City, stated this was an old plat.  He noted there is a significant difference in elevation between the west side of the alley and the east end.  He said the street grade drops from north to south as it goes down the west side of the property.  He commented that the owner of the property had no plans to build across the property line at this time.  He said Lane County had no need for the property and it would serve the public interest to put the property back on the tax rolls.

 

Gilbert Robinson, 85582 Granada Road. Florence, said he is the husband of Judy Carr Robinson, and they oppose the proposed vacation of the alley.  He said they chose their lot for the view of Highway 101, over the Siuslaw River and the ocean.  He said when they purchased their lot they understood the status of the alley.   He said they had no problem with a house being built on every lot, but the problem is the alley is in their view.  He said they were concerned that a house would be built on the east end of the alley.

 

Dwyer asked why someone would vacate an alley they already had use of.

 

Ward stated by vacating the alley, it would allow the property lines to go to the center of the road.  He added it would allow Cusick to develop a grading plan that would allow taking out the ridgeline.

 

Robinson said he was worried that vacating the alley would create a homesite.  He said the ideal way is to have it put between the driveway between the Wendling and Robinson property.  He noted there are cherry trees on it and it is a dedicated alley.

 

Gene Wendling, 85598 Glenada Rd, stated he owns lot 4, 5 and 6 and his concern is access to the property.  He said his house sits at the southwest corner and if there is an alleyway or driveway there, it could be a problem with heavy rains affecting his driveway.  He was against the proposed vacation.

 

There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Sorenson closed the Public Hearing.

 

Morrison agreed with staff’s analysis regarding the actual lot itself. She said she saw the lot and the steepness is high and she was in disagreement with Carr and Robertson’s view that it would obstruct their view of the bridge and the river.

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 00-3-15-7.

 

Morrison MOVED, Green SECONDED.

 

Sorenson stated he was reluctant to grant road vacations, as it is public land.

 

VOTE: 2-2 (Dwyer, Sorenson dissenting) Motion fails.

 

f.        THIRD READING AND PUBLIC HEARING/Ordinance PA 1141/In the Matter of Amending the Rural Comprehensive Plan to Redesignate Land from “Agricultural” to “Rural”, Rezone that Land from “E-40/Exclusive Farm Use” to “RR-5/Rural Residential,” Adopting an Exception to Statewide Planning Goals 3 and 4; and Adopting Savings and Severability Clauses (file PA 98-2230; Doak).

 

Jerry Kendall, Associate Planner, reported that this is a plan amendment and zone change from exclusive farm use (E-40) to RR2.  He explained that it involved an exception required to Goal 3 and 4 of the Farm and Forest Goal.  He noted the property is located south of Highway 58 and on Lost Creek Road and is composed of 32.54 acres.  He recalled there was an abbreviated public hearing on the matter on December 1.  He said the parcel is over the 20-acre limit that is encouraged in the guideline, however it is exceptional in that it has pit soils that were a result of excavation of the top 20 feet of the topsoil when the railroad was constructed south of the property.  He stated as a result, the Soil Conservation Service Book for Lane County rates the agricultural capability at Class 8, as poor as it can get and that would indicate poor forest capability for commercial timber.

 

Kendall noted the initial application at RR2 brought up Goal 14 issues that were reflected in his agenda cover memo, dated October 25, that was generated for the December 1 hearing.  He said since that time, they had received a letter from the owner’s attorney, Mr. Gildea and the letter was provided to the Board changing the application to an RR5 density, eliminating staff’s concerns on the Goal 14 issue and on staff’s concerns on septic capability.

 

Kendall stated that after the December 1 hearing, he had a discussion with the De Sotos (who were in opposition).  He said the De Sotos requested that the state Water Master look at the aquifer study that was performed by EGR & Associates, and the result of that study had been provided to the Board in the supplemental memo of March 10 (copy in file).  He noted that report took issue with the methodology with the aquifer.  He noted that earlier he received a fax from the Water Master’s office requesting that the record be kept open for a minimum of  two weeks in order to allow them to respond to testimony that will be presented by the EGR staff today.

 

Sorenson stated that this decision is subject to plan amendment and rezoning criteria cited in the agenda and cover memorandum and attachments.  He said that evidence and testimony must be directed toward the above criteria and failure to raise an issue to enable a response may preclude an appeal to LUBA.  He noted that this is the opportunity for those present to enter information into the record.  He said that only those persons who qualify as parties might appeal any Board decision to LUBA.

 

Sorenson asked for any disclosures by the members of the Lane County Board of Commissioners of ex parte contacts due to conflicts of interest.

 

There were no ex parte contacts.

 

Commissioner Sorenson opened up the Public Hearing.

 

Thomas Miller, Certified Planner and Landscape Architect, represented Wade Doak.  He passed out a map graph (copy in file).  He noted that the subject property is unusual in that it was excavated in 1947, left by itself and certain areas have developed some tree cover.  He said the property contains three wetland areas that are small and isolated.  He reported that through the process of hearings, subsequent evaluations from the groundwater standpoint (the applicant had a well drilled) they performed the required dual well aquifer flow test because the area is within a quantity/quality limited area. He noted they did a subsequent site excavation and that had been a result of the neighborhood.  He added the homeowners had brought up good issues and the applicant has responded to them.  Miller said the change in Doak’s direction to move toward the RR5 is a way to be good neighbors.

 

Miller reported that six parcels could be developed within the property and it was determined that there would be no negative impacts.  He added that traffic impacts were also evaluated by JRH Engineering, evaluating impacts to Lost Creek Boulevard and the intersection of Lost Creek and Highway 58.  He said it was determined that there would be no negative impacts as a result of the development.

 

Miller reported that the surrounding zoning on the west and north is RR1 and there are 15 dwellings within those two development sites and the elevated railroad is along the south.  He noted that there is a parcel to the east, an E-40 parcel that has a tree farm on it.

 

Miller stated the application complies with state law and Lane Code criteria.  He said the applicant would not be adverse to the site plan review suffix, recognizing that would further help to define specifically where future wells and drainfields would go.  He said he was comfortable with the site plan.

 

Phillip Stallings,, Geologist, EGR & Associates, 1460 Parnell, Eugene, stated he is the person responsible for putting together the initial aquifer test and preparing a response to it.  He presented rebuttal to Michael Mattick’s, (the Lane County Water Master) statement that there is insufficient information available to make the conclusion that sufficient water is available for the proposed use.  He said that Mattick based his recommendation on a review prepared by Karl Wozniak from Oregon Water Resources Department and Wozniak indicated in his review that the conclusions of their report were based on faulty technical analysis and assumptions.  Stallings prepared a rebuttal report in response to Mattick’s statement.  He read a summary into the record.  He maintained that there is sufficient water for RR2 and RR5 residential use.  He said that Wozniak did not state that the conclusion of their report was in error, only that he didn’t think the conclusion was justified by their assumptions and technical model.

 

R. Steve Dorsey, stated he is the Christmas tree grower across from the subject property.  He said that he was neutral on the issue.  He provided 14 large color photos and a two-page cover letter to Jerry Kendall (copy in file.)  He said that there had been a mischaracterization of the land.  He noted that he had started a Christmas tree farm from scratch across the road on the same type of land using the same aquifers.  He said the land has regenerated itself with at least a 55% coverage of Douglas Fir and smaller non-harvestable trees.  He estimated that it is a wood lot or timber property in the making.  He noted there is a large barren wet area that if planted with scotch pine, the entire property could be brought up to timber.  He didn’t want the Board to make their decision on the basis that this property is both barren and thinly forested, because there are a number of 50 to 70 foot high Douglas Fir trees.

 

Cindy Gregory, 82608 Sprague Lane, reiterated that the soil does have a Class 8  Agricultural rating so it could be used for that purpose.  She added that Miller had admitted that the land does have wetland features on it.  She stated she submitted photos of a pond on the southwest area that was not listed in the applicant’s application, showing marsh grass.  She said with regard to Mattick’s report, it is not clear that there is a general water supply in that area that will recharge.

 

Margaret Lueders, 82548 Sprague, Dexter, stated she lives downhill from the top part of the property.  She said she is concerned about water quality and quantity.  She said she was not opposed to the building, but is worried about the water supply and septic going into their well.  She was pleased there would be no access off of Sprague.  She said her major concerns were water safety, wellness and health.

 

Morrison asked Lueders if her concerns were neutral going from RR2 to RR5.

 

Lueders responded she is concerned because they are downhill

 

Gregory stated she was concerned with the water quality and recharge.  She noted that the last report provided by the State of Oregon against the EGR report concerns her.  She suggested if there are wells, another report is prepared so the State of Oregon can review it.  She read the conclusions of the state report into the record.  She noted the report stated that there were discrepancies in the recording data and she was concerned about that.

 

Lil De Soto, 82564 Sprague Lane, said she thought the watermaster’s document was questionable.  She said there are questions that need answering. She said the state water master brought up valid arguments.  She said the application is based on events from 53 years ago.  She questioned designation that the land is marginal for forestry.  She said there needs to be an explanation as to why the land could not be used for agriculture.  She noted the applicants had not communicated with the community nor have they attended any public meetings.  She said that the Dexter Sanitary District has expressed concern since the property is surrounded by two-thirds of their main lines.  She added it will affect the wastewater plant with growth boundaries and does not obtain the purpose of statewide planning Goal 14.  She asked the Board to review color pictures before they make their final decision.  She urged the Board to deny the request.

 

Ardith Deal, 82826 Sprague Lane, agreed with what the neighbors have said.  She stated she submitted information to the Board.

 

John Bauguess, 38970 Highway 58, Dexter, noted that in the 1970’s, there was raw sewage in the ditches of Dexter.  He said in the mid-1970’s a sewer district was put into Dexter and a moratorium was placed on development.  He noted the new development is outside of the sewer district, but some of the same concerns exist since the water seeps into the soil and into the flat lands.  He said that wells in Dexter are not easy to come by. He said in the past 15 years, the land has come back with healthy trees in that area.  He added he has concerns about traffic changing the rural character of Dexter.  He said to him it is the beginning of suburban development in Dexter.  He asked where the money would come from to pay for the infrastructure that is necessary when development goes in.

 

Rod Walker, 38809 Dexter Road, said changing from RR2 to RR5 has a tendency to attract people that have horses or cows and there is no limitation of the amount of water that could be pumped to build up a pasture to keep in green in the summertime.  He said there would be a demand on the water supply.

 

John Tyler, 82329 Hannah, Dexter, stated he read the file and examined all of the findings of all the proceedings.  He identified 12 exceptions that he intends to take to LUBA and enter into the public record.  He said he was very specific about the exceptions that were not met to Goals 3 and 4 and Goal 14.  He discussed Exception 1, wanting the entire EGR report disallowed due to its inadequacies in meeting the aquifer test requirements in LC 160.044; LC 13.050 and the performance standards required in LC 13.050 (13 C) on the basis of the numerous challenges to its technical and statistical incompetencies in the water master’s report of January 22.  He added that staff had relied on the technical competency of that report until the water master challenged it.  He said they intend to challenge the efficacy of that report.  He noted there are three wetlands areas and the Corps of Engineers will have to do a wetland study.

 

Kendall requested the record to be left open for a minimum of a week.  He noted the water master’s office requested two weeks.  He suggested another two weeks for final rebuttal by the applicant, including the need for revised findings to reflect the RR5 designation and the miscellaneous concerns expressed by staff in the agenda cover memo.  He recommended bringing it back to the Board following May 3, for a Fourth Reading and Deliberation.  He asked what the Board thought about adding the site review suffix to the proposal. He noted the purpose of the site review suffix would be to alert subsequent staff to pay attention to those issues at the subdivision stage.  He added he could add the site review to the ordinance.

 

For rebuttal, Miller stated with regard to the tree farmer to the east, the applicant did contract with a licensed forester early in the process and the forester produced a report that is in the record.  He noted the forester concluded that this property would not support productive forest resource management.  Regarding the national wetlands inventory, Miller said the maps do not show wetlands on this property.  He acknowledged there are three areas on the site but they are not required to do a delineation of the features unless through development those features would be disturbed.  He added they would need to get a state and federal permit to mitigate.  He said there are stormwater drainage problems, because there had never been a system developed.  He noted through the subdivision and site review process, the County would ensure that those things were designed by civil engineers as part of their process.  He said in response to Lil De Soto’s  remarks regarding the Dexter Sanitary Company, she stated the applicant had no communication with them but it was not true, since Larry Gildae went through the process of preparing the irrevocable consent to annex.  He said that the sanitary district does not have the capacity to accept any new connections.  He noted Tyler’s concern about the property being excavated 20 feet deep over 72% is not true.  He said staff is correct in relying on soil conservation service data.  He noted they had submitted for the record the historic aerial photos.

 

There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Sorenson closed the Public Hearing and left the record open for written testimony.

 

Kendall  suggested to keep the record open until March 29 for any party to submit any item they wish or to respond to testimony or materials in the record.  He added there needed to be an additional week until April 5 for any party to respond to submittals within the first two-week period until April 19 for final rebuttal and revised findings.  He said there should be a Fourth Reading and Deliberation on May 3.

 

MOTION: to approve the staff recommendation regarding the time line for submission of additional written materials into the record and setting a Fourth Reading and Public Hearing.

 

Dwyer MOVED, Morrison SECONDED.

 

Green stated that he wouldn’t be opposed to the restriction of  the site view provision.

 

Morrison agreed.

 

VOTE: 4-0.

 

10. PUBLIC HEARINGS

 

a. SECOND READING AND PUBLIC HEARING/Ordinance PA 1147/In the Matter of  Amending the Rural Comprehensive Plan to Redesignate Land from “Forest Land” to “Nonresource”, Rezone that Land from “F-2/Impacted Forest Lands” to “RR-5/Rural Residential”; and Adopting Savings and Severability Clauses (file PA 98-1953; Cooley).

 

Kendall explained the subject property consists of 80.25 acres of vacant land zoned F-2 with beaches and dunes overlay located south of Clear Lake Road and adjacent to Dunes City.  He noted the original proposal was to have five-acre density, utilizing the grandfathered-in 36-lot subdivision at a density of 11 parcels of 2.1 acre average.  He said staff noted that presented a Goal 2 policy 17 conflict since the non-resource plan designation requires a minimum associated rural residential zone of a five or ten acre density.  He added since the agenda cover memo was generated on March 10, the applicants withdrew their desire for any density less than five acres.

 

Kendall said a non-resource plan designation does not require any exceptions from goals.  He said the applicant has to prove that the property is so subliminal in a resource perspective that it should have never been zoned resource land to begin with.  He noted the property has an agricultural class of 5 to 8 and that puts it  outside the definition of agricultural land for Western Oregon.  He said that the Goal 14 concern is no longer a concern for staff. 

 

Kendall said the planning commission approved this at a 3-2 vote without a site review suffix at a time when the applicant was going to include the grandfathered in lots.  He noted that staff gave the Board a memo on March 10 with letters that were submitted into the file record.  He added that there were seven letters opposed, and one letter from DSL, citing the need for a wetland delineation standard response.  He said there was a letter from Mr. Taylor stating they would go to the five acres.  He noted that staff was expecting to receive a covenant drafted by the application to acknowledge the five acre minimum and that had not been received.  He added since the memo was generated,  a letter received on March 13 from the Carlesons, on March 14, advocated that the property has natural features that should be preserved and adequate housing and vacant lots in neighboring Dunes City.  He said on that basis, the Dunes City City Council does not favor approval of the request.  He added a letter received yesterday from Bill Carter was in opposition.

 

Sorenson explained that this decision is subject to plan amendment and rezoning criteria cited in the agenda cover memorandum and evidence and testimony must be directed towards the approval criteria.  He added failure to raise an issue to enable a response might preclude appeal to the Land Use Board of Appeals.  He said this was the opportunity for those present to enter information into the record and only those persons who qualify as parties may appeal a Board decision to LUBA.

 

Sorenson called for disclosure of Board members of any ex parte contacts.

 

There were none.

 

Commissioner Sorenson opened up the Public Hearing.

 

Harry Taylor, Land Use Consultant, P. O. Box 1420, Veneta, stated he was the agent for the owners and applicants of the property, Bryon and Vel Cooley, Marsha and Debra Lance.  He explained that the owners had property for 25 years.  He said they have changed their position, wanting rural residential five-acre for the entire 80 acres because there was an underlying legal lot issue.  He added that the platted subdivision on the south 23 acres of the property had merit for development of the property.

 

Taylor stated they are proposing to file a covenant that would limit any development to a minimum of five acres.  He said the subdivision would go away.  He noted that a non-resource designation is permitted by the rural comprehensive plan, Goal 2, Policy 16 and Lane County has approved about 12 non-resource plan amendments from 1981 to 1999.  He said they have proved the land is not for farm or forest.  He noted there is a sandy-type soil underneath the property.  He said it is their opinion that the proposal is consistent with the goals and no exception is required.  He said they hired people to assess the property to see if it could be developed to meet the standards for being non-resource land.  He said they addressed wetlands, dunes, wildlife, and site capability based on soils, water, sanitation and forestry capability.  He added they identified natural features that are on the property as well as steep sloped areas.  He said they have looked at flood plains that are adjacent to the creek and it is their opinion that the property is better protected under a residential use zoning than being under the forest zone.  He added if there are any changes to wetlands, they would need to work that out.

 

Taylor said they have adequately addressed the issue of density at the proposed five acres that staff agrees with.  He said they have looked at sanitation, water, access and lack of resources in the surrounding area and there are no other resource lands immediate to the property. He noted the parcel is somewhat of an isolated island.  He passed out documents for the Board from Lane County Coastal Management Plan (copy in file)   He also passed out a letter from Bob Booth, a consulting forester. (Copy in file).  He said they have hired a fish biologist and his memo is attached (Copy in file.) 

 

Green noted the City of Dunes City had completed their periodic review and there is an excess of a 20  year supply of undeveloped land that is zoned residential.  He asked why the Board would consider rezoning forest resource land as residential property when Dunes City has an excess of a 20-year supply.

 

Taylor responded that the land available in Dunes City is of a different character and size.  He said the property by its location is different and it allows people who want to live on the coast to live in a five-acre density environment.  He added Dunes City is more suburban.  He said the property is not impacted forestland, it is better considered as rural residential non-resource land.

 

Mike Farthing, represented the applicants.  He noted there had been a recent influx of letters and correspondence of the criteria.  He said the letters had been critical of the draft findings in the record as legal issues have been raised and the forest capability assessment has been challenged.  He said his duty is to respond to that information.  He said they believed most evidence is in the record.  He said the criteria are outlined in Goal 2, Policy 16.  He requested two weeks to put together their written rebuttal.  He noted there was no new evidence that had been submitted, but it was a different way of looking at the criteria and goals.  He said they don’t think the opponents are correct and are consistent with existing Lane County policy and treatment of the non-resource criteria.  He added they are comfortable with the schedule that Kendall presented in the previous matter.  He noted their findings would supplement the findings that are in the file.  He noted he had used the covenant in the past and would require all future land divisions to adhere to a five-acre minimum.  He said he wants to put in the covenant that they would agree to replat the existing subdivision, replaced by a new land division proposal that would include five-acre minimum densities.

 

Richard Palmer, 4713 Foothill Drive, Westlake,  stated he did not send a response, he delivered one in person.  He said the property is beautiful.  He added it has an abundant water supply with Class 1 salmon stream, natural dunes, abundant wildlife and habitat.  He noted the land had standing water as much as ten months of the year.  He said he didn’t see the need to jeopardize this pristine area for the land to be developed, coupled with the risk of septic water filtering into well water as there is an abundance of land already.

 

Darryl Eastman, 4811 Creek Way, Florence, stated his property abuts the property.  He said some of his neighbors did not receive notice of the hearing.  He said there is standing water on the property due to the density of the trees.  He added he was concerned about the water quality flowing from the lake above.

 

There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Sorenson closed the Public Hearing.  He added that written comments are requested from the public and written rebuttal of the comments with additional comments from staff and setting  the matter for additional deliberation from  the Board.

 

Vorhes noted that the applicant’s representatives did not want oral rebuttal.  He added the record would remain open to March 29, with a Third Reading on May 3.

 

Kendall noted the first two-week period for any party to comment on any item would end March 29.  He said the one-week period for any party to comment on materials received in the prior two weeks would close on April 5.  He added the final two weeks for final rebuttal  by the applicant with advised findings would close on April 19 with the Third Reading and Deliberation on May 3.

 

MOTION: to approve staff recommendation.

 

Dwyer MOVED, Morrison SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 4-0.

 

11. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

Sorenson noted that BRING Recycling is doing a strategic plan.  He met with Mike Moskovitz about the logo project.  He read a letter from Jack Billings.  He reported he was working on setting up an appointment with the Clinton Administration regarding the forest payments legislation and work in Washington, D.C. on the truck issue.

 

12. OTHER BUSINESS

 

Morrison reported on the federal legislation that is going through that the administration had sent to Senators Wyden and Craig.  She suggested going forward with the recommendation that she and Van Vactor develop suggestions and a response to the administration’s proposal to bring back to the Board.  She passed out the City of Lowell’s comments to Senator Wyden in regard to the legislation (copy in file).

 

There being no further business, Commissioner  Sorenson adjourned the meeting at 5:20 p.m.

 

Melissa Zimmer

Recording Secretary

 

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