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Stretching a schedule too far

By Staff | May 12, 2010

At last week’s meeting of the City Council, Planning Commission chairman Michael Valiquette submitted a proposed schedule of session dates and topics to be covered during the commission’s — and Land Development Code subcommittee’s — discussions regarding potential changes to regulations for redevelopment within the city’s resort housing district.

Valiquette had proposed a 14-month schedule, at which each individual topic — identified by both the council and commission — would be discussed by the seven-member panel. He suggested that each of these topics would be covered every two meetings, essentially one per month.

For instance, during May 2010, the commission/subcommittee would talk about density. The following month, they would discuss impervious coverage, developed area and vegetation removal. The next, height limits. And on and on.

Under the proposed schedule, the final report would be submitted to council in June 2011.

We think that’s an awfully long time not just for this legislation to be adopted by the city, but only to be passed along to City Council to receive the commission’s final report. Who knows how long the council will banter the subject before any ordinance could be approved? After all, at the beginning of the year, local leaders were saying that they hoped this matter could be resolved before the end of 2010.

However, the council unanimously agreed that the proposed schedule was appropriate and well planned.

On Tuesday, the LDC subcommittee took their first look at the Planning Department’s staff report regarding alterations to the current density legislation, which focused on a few changes to the language regarding development intensity. In less than a half hour discussing the staff’s recommended changes, comments from each subcommittee member and input from the public, the topic was wrapped up.

As a result, the subcommittee suggested moving up their discussions of impervious coverage, developed area and vegetation removal — after they approve the changes to the density matter, of course, which all agreed would merely be a formality.

It looks as though progress on resort housing redevelopment won’t take as long to complete as originally thought, and that’s a good thing. We can only hope that their future meetings will be as productive as the first.

— Reporter editorial