SC expects riparian public hearing early in 2012

The phrase “There’s an App for that” has become part of our daily vernacular. However, when used in Shady Cove these days it has a slightly different twist, though it’s becoming just as common. During the December 9 Planning Commission meeting it became evident that word is getting out that there are applications/permits required for various things i.e. sandwich board signs, special events etc. and folks are remembering when they need these things that – yep – “There’s an App for that!” so advertise away – but drop by City Hall first.

Actually commissioners discussed lots of apps during the staff reports portion of their meeting, and all were happy to hear there are a few folks interested in building new homes in the city. Also during that section Administrator Danise Brakeman suggested the commission have a joint all day training session with council, lead by a trainer  whose seminar she attended recently. Brakeman advised both groups could learn a lot; for example what types of conditions can legally be applied to applications, what the role of the planning commission is and what the role  of council is. Commissioners were all for the idea, but when Brakeman referred to the trainer as a “facilitator” expressions changed and it was voiced that a facilitator was not needed for a joint commission/council meeting. Brakeman clarified training was the key and that as a trainer he would run – or facilitate – the meeting and all were back on board.

The draft Riparian Ordinance also got one more (relatively) brief review. The meatiest discussion was over the term “top of bank” as the jumping off point for measurement of the 75 foot setback. The problem: “top of bank” seems a bit of a moving target as far as measuring goes and commissioners are aiming at simplicity and enforceability for the ordinance. If you want a challenge, Google “Riparian top of bank” and you’ll see why it warranted discussion. The Province of British Columbia does seem to have nailed it down, their government has actually managed a fairly concise definition (metres aside) :

” Assessment methods definition – top of bank “” means
(a) the point closest to the boundary of the active floodplain of a stream where a break in the slope of the land occurs such that the grade beyond the break is flatter than 3:1 at any point for a minimum distance of 15 metres measured perpendicularly from the break, and
(b) for a floodplain area not contained in a ravine, the edge of the active floodplain of a stream where the slope of the land beyond the edge is flatter than 3:1 at any point for a minimum distance of 15 metres measured perpendicularly from the edge.

Top of bank is OAR (Oregon Administrative Rules) approved and per Brakeman several agencies will review the ordinance prior to the public hearing and sticking with OAR wording helps assure those agencies won’t require several more drafts before the public can have their say. Commissioners agreed and the hearing will be scheduled early next year. .By Christy Pitto
Of the Independent


Speak Your Mind