APRIL 19, 2011
7:00 P.M.


The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m.


Members Present: Jim Squires, Lawrence Hawkins III, Robert Weidlich,
Robert Emerson, William Reichert, Jane Huber, Dave Okum

Others Present: Randy Campion, Building Inspection Supervisor



Mr. Reichert moved for adoption as written the January 18, 2011 Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting minutes, Mr. Squires seconded the motion and with a unanimous affirmative vote from the Board of Zoning Appeals Members, the minutes were adopted.


Chairman Okum: We received correspondence which is the Zoning pamphlet and Ordinance No. 8-2011.


Mr. Hawkins gave the Board of Zoning Appeals Members a summary report of the City Council meetings since January 2011, reviewing the swearing in of Chief Mathis as Chief of Police and the new Assistant Chief Captain Tom Wells, as well as a new
Sergeant Michael Ott; new contracts for Police and Fire; passed Zoning Code changes; passed a resolution opposing House Bill 3 which involves state tax and cuts to be made to the local government fund; approval of three new police cars to be purchased; approval for additional salt to be purchased for the City and also approved an incentive program for Business College Source located within the City.


    Chairman Okum: Planning Commission met in March, we had one significant item on the Agenda which was the Day Care facility, a Conditional Use Hearing. The operator did not understand that an outdoor play area is required by the Ohio Bureau of Job and Family Services. Planning Commission had a lot of discussion and the result of that was it did receive a unanimous “no” vote; it was denied. The other item was to extend the temporary banners for businesses in Springdale and that was approved. We had several items on the agenda for April: We approved the Full Throttle Karting. We had a request for signage at Cititrends that was denied. We had a request for exterior finish changes at 455 East Kemper Road for Five Guys Burgers & Fries and that was approved; we also approved minor modifications to the PUD for the Springdale Farmer’s Market to remain at the Springdale Towne Center to be reviewed after two years.

Mr. Squires: There is something happening up there where Dunkin Donuts was located at one time. Does Planning Commission have any idea what is going on there?

Chairman Okum: No; we haven’t had anything brought to us.

Mr. Campion: They could just be taking equipment out of the structure. Dunkin Donuts maintains the property and the grass.



    (No Old Business to present at this meeting.)


A. Chairman Okum: The first item on the agenda is the owner of 207 Harter Avenue request a variance to allow the elimination of a garage. Said variance is from Section 153.105(B), “a single two-car garage and related parking area is required…”.

    Ms. Jane Sheetz: I am a member of Homes Around the Corner. Just to be clear we are not proposing any changes to the property as it exists. I purchased the property about 12 months ago. Prior to me owning the home it had been foreclosed on by a bank; a previous owner converted a single-car garage into a bedroom. The face of the house will remain looking like a garage but the back of the garage has a single bedroom with a nice walk-in closet. It is a very nice single-family residence with four bedrooms. The property was on the market for 10 months and did not sell; we then went to “Plan B” and decided to rent the property. We are requesting a variance to allow the garage conversion to remain.

    (At this time Mr. Randy Campion read the Staff comments.)

    Chairman Okum: For the record, there are no other individuals present from the audience to address the Board; at this time we will close this portion of the meeting and we will move on to discussion and deliberation on the issue.

Mr. Hawkins: Is the garage door still in operation?

Ms. Sheetz: Yes, sir.

Mr. Hawkins: I also notice that there is a difference in the square feet you have in the diagram, compared to what Staff found.

Mr. Campion: It may be the difference between the inside and the outside.

Ms. Sheetz: I was not aware that it had a difference in the square footage.

Chairman Okum: The applicant indicates that the home does have an operable garage door, and it is your intent to maintain that?

Ms. Sheetz: Yes, sir. It is adequate for storage space and there is a shed in the backyard.

Chairman Okum: You show a half-bath on your drawing, is that half-bath accessible from that bedroom?

Ms. Sheetz: Yes.

Chairman Okum: You show a window with that bedroom; does that window currently meet that egress requirements for fire safety?

Ms. Sheetz: It does not; we would need to modify that.

Mr. Reichert: Is the house occupied at this time?

Ms. Sheetz: Yes, it is occupied; we have a very nice renter.

Mr. Reichert: Where is the door to the half-bath located; is it toward the bedroom?

Ms. Sheetz: Yes.

Mr. Squires: I don’t see how they get from bedroom four to the half-bath.

Ms. Sheetz: There is a doorway from the half-bath to the bedroom.

    Mr. Hawkins: The wall that is between that fourth bedroom and the storage area, is that drywall?

    Ms. Sheetz: Yes, drywall on both sides; that was one of the items that came up on the rental inspection and we did drywall that entire wall.

    Mr. Hawkins: On the storage side, what is the floor material; is it still the concrete slab?

    Ms. Sheetz: It is still the concrete.

    Mr. Emerson: I take it the heating probably runs through the attic and is pumped into that room?

    Ms. Sheetz: Yes, it does have heat.

    Chairman Okum: Do you know if the drywall on the wall between the storage area and the house is fire rated?

    Ms. Sheetz: It is fire rated.

    Chairman Okum: There is no doorway from the storage area to the house?

Ms. Sheetz: There is not.

Chairman Okum: Mr. Campion, Staff would require, before this would be approved for the issue with the egress window to be taken care of?

Mr. Campion: Yes, Staff would require a permit, and in the permit process we would require them to have an egress window along with a smoke alarm and the 20 minute fire rating.

Chairman Okum: So that the life safety issues are addressed.
How many parking spaces are provided on the driveway?

Ms. Sheetz: Two compact cars or one pickup truck; it is a shallow lot. I appreciate in the Staff comments about the fourth bedroom being added to the back but I am not sure how you would actually lay that out back there, it is actually pretty tight to put in a bedroom; I believe it would be right up against the neighbors on both sides.

Chairman Okum: Staff has provided a sketch showing how that could be laid out.

Ms. Sheetz: This is already completed; so it is not our intent to come back and put in another bedroom or another garage.

Chairman Okum: It is the responsibility of the City’s Staff to present any other way to meet the Code without a variance, to change a garage space into a living space.
For the record the applicant has filled out the application along with the questionnaire for this Board; there is also the standard reasons for a variance listed “A” through “G”. The questions have been answered by the applicant in detail and those are part of the record.

Mr. Hawkins: What is our definition of a garage; if she still has the front part storage with a working door? Do we have dimensions that are within the Code?

Chairman Okum: We say for a motor vehicle, so it must accommodate a motor vehicle. But it also gives minimum square footage for a garage. Based upon what the applicant has submitted, the storage space is approximately 7’ X 11’-7” and shall be maintained with an operable garage door. Should a variance be granted I would certainly hope that the Board would put conditions on the site that it would maintain a functional garage door and shall be no smaller than the space that is identified?

Mrs. Huber: I move to grant a variance from Section 153.105(B), so as to allow a converted garage into living space to remain on the property located at
207 Harter Avenue with the conditions that the storage area be no smaller than
7’ X 11’-7” and that the garage door remain operable and in place, as is.
Mr. Squires seconded the motion and with 6 affirmative votes and 1 “no” vote the variance was granted with conditions.

Chairman Okum: You will need to get back with the Building Department and finalize the permit with the details.


Chairman Okum: I have one item I want to make everyone aware of; there was an item that was supposed to be on the agenda, and the applicant failed to complete all of the documentation; it was advertised.
Additionally for disclosure purposes I need to let everyone know there is a gentleman that owns a business or is connected to a business that is over on Chesterdale Road that called my personal residence and left a message for me to call him in regards to his business operation. I did not call him because of the issue of exparte discussion. If you do hear anything or a person calls you concerning that, except for the elected officials, I would suggest that you do not return phone calls from people that may want to discuss something that may be on the agenda for us in the future.

Mr. Hawkins: I did receive one.

Mr. Emerson: Springdale is having Springdale Day at the Cincinnati Reds,
May 17th, 2011.


Mr. Squires moved to adjourn, Mr. Hawkins seconded the motion and with a unanimous “aye” vote from the Board of Zoning Appeals Members, the meeting adjourned at 7:38 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

________________________,2011 ___________________________________
            Chairman Dave Okum

________________________,2011 ___________________________________
            Secretary Jane Huber