BOARD OF ZONING MEETING
SEPTEMBER 16, 2008
7:00 P.M.



I. CALL MEETING TO ORDER

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


II. ROLL CALL

Members Present: Randy Danbury, Robert Diehl, Robert Weidlich, Robert Emerson, Jane Huber

Members Absent: Dave Okum, William Reichert


III. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE


IV. MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF 19 AUGUST 2008

Mrs. Huber moved for adoption, the August 19, 2008 Board of Zoning Meeting Minutes with the following corrections: page 3: the vote should be 2 “aye” and 4 “no”; page 4 – the 12’ X 9” shed should be changed to 12’ X 9’; and on
page 4, a correction to Mr. Danbury’s statement “When you purchased the property, were you aware that it was no longer in compliance with the zoning codes?”
Mr. Emerson seconded the motion, and the August 2008 Minutes were adopted.


V. REPORT ON COUNCIL

Mr. Danbury gave the report on Council: Council did take under consideration the idea of charging the applicants that come before us and Council basically said that we want to keep it at “no charge”.


VI. REPORT ON PLANNING COMMISSION

No report was presented for the Planning Commission.

VII. CORRESPONDENCE

a. Zoning Bulletin – August 25, 2008


VIII. SWEARING IN OF APPLICANT(S)


IX. OLD BUSINESS

No items of Old Business were presented.


X. NEW BUSINESS

A. Request for approval of a variance to allow the owner of 12076 Marwood Lane to eliminate the garage at the residence, said variance is from Section 153.105(B) “A single two-car garage is required.”

No representatives were present for this request. The request was moved to the end of the agenda.)

B. Request was withdrawn for an approval of a variance to allow the owner of the property at 1287 Benedict Court to add an angled portion of existing six (6’) foot fence to be eight (8’) feet in height; said variance is from Section 153.482(B) “…fences and walls shall not exceed 6 feet in height”.

C. Request for approval of a variance to allow the owner of the property at 871 Summerfield Lane the following variances: (A) To allow three accessory structures on the property; a utility building, a gazebo, and a pergola, said variance is from Section 153.492(B)(1) “There shall be no more than one detached accessory building, other than a garage on a lot in a residential zoning district.” (B) To allow a utility building to be 3’ from the side lot line, said variance is from Section 153.067(B)(4) “All structures must not be less than 5’ from the rear or side lot lines.” (C) To allow a pergola to be located 3’ from the side lot line, said variance is from Section 153.067(B)(4) “All structures must not be less than 5’ from the rear or side lot lines.” (D) To allow a spa/hot tub to be located 6’ from the side lot line, said variance is from Section 153.488(C)(1) “A swimming pool, bath house, tennis court or other accessory recreational facility shall be located 15’ from the rear or side lot lines.”

Don Taylor and Sandy Taylor, owners of the property at 871 Summerfield Lane came forward.
Sandy Taylor: We have lived at this property since November of 1985. The process began with an in-ground pool. I purchased a 20’ X 38’ kidney shape pool; it has 1500 feet of stamped concrete around. They also poured off a separate pad, 10’ X 12’ to allow for the pergola. He put that 3’ away, because that is where our shed always sat.
The pergola went up and the fence went up. During all this the idea was proposed to us about a swinging gazebo, because I love to sit at the top of the hill and look out, it is a 10’ X 12’ gazebo with a two-man glider that goes back and forth. This process began back in April and the permit was applied for; I was told the permit was a blanket permit and it took care of the fence and everything with it. I can only assume the contractor was correct. Going through the final inspection for the pool, Gordon King indicated to us that the only thing we were lacking was an alarm on the sliding door because the house was used as a barricade to the back yard. I said, “now down the road, could I put a hot tub there under that pergola?’ Gordan responded, “Sure, no problem.” It wasn’t until afterwards, in June, that I got a call from Gordon King indicating that the building specs weren’t in for the pergola and the gazebo. Bill McErlane communicated to me that the pergola and the gazebo were in violation because it was too many structures.
(At this time Mrs. Taylor handed out pictures of her back yard with structures. She also turned in the pergola specs.)
The gazebo was purchased in Jackson, Ohio. He had no blueprints on it; so
Clarence Gray has hired an engineer and they have been working on it; he has assured me that they will hand deliver them to Bill McErlane’s office as soon as he gets them.
The shed is in the same place it has always been.
(At this time Mrs. Taylor handed out letters from four of her neighbors.)

Vice-Chairman Weidlich: These seem to be all the same letter, a form letter signed by these residents. If the Board agrees I will read a letter and state the residents who signed it. They are dated August 23, 2008 and signed by Kathy Ransenburg at
880 Summerfield Lane, Heather Nienaber at 12000 Elkridge Drive, Lauren Goodwin at 867 Summerfield Lane and also a Joann Suggs at 875 Summerfield Lane.

(Randy Campion read the staff report.)

(At this time, Vice-Chairman Robert Weidlich opened the floor to the audience for comments and no one came forward.)

Mrs. Huber made a motion to grant a variance from Section 153.492(B)(1); Section 153.067(B)(4); Section 153.067(B)(4); and Section 153.488(C)(1), so as to allow a pergola and a utility building to be three feet from side lot lines, to allow a hot/tub spa to be six feet from the side lot line. The property is located at 871 Summerfield Lane.
Mr. Emerson seconded the motion.

Mrs. Huber: You’ve got a camper; I wouldn’t imagine that you would use that ever again, because you have your resort in your back yard.

Mr. Danbury: The pergola, is that an open structure with no sides?

Mrs. Taylor: Correct. I have full sun from East to West, I have no shelter, I need some shelter and that is where the pergola came into play. I can’t grow trees in this yard.

Mr. Danbury: I am looking at some of the other issues, 3’ as opposed to 5’ for some of the structures; I personally don’t have a problem with that.

Vice Chairman Weidlich: To me, what you had done looks very nice. It puts this Board in an awkward situation because three structures on one property set a big precedent. As long as I have been on the Board we have never approved that many structures on one property.

(At this point Vice Chairman Weidlich moved to deliberation and discussion of the evidence that had been presented.)

Mr. Emerson: I looked at that back yard, and you can see from the pictures, it is absolutely beautiful. The three structure thing I have a problem with. I am going to support this because it is beautiful.

Mr. Campion: The way Ohio Building Code has put it, the owner is ultimately responsible for what happens on your property that is why we write orders to the homeowner and not the contractor.

Mr. Emerson: Does the City of Springdale have a list of things the homeowners could check for when hiring a contractor.

Mr. Campion: We don’t have a list of contractors because we don’t register contractors. I am not sure if we have a check list when hiring contractors.

Vice Chairman Weidlich: Based upon the facts presented and the rules of the Board of Zoning Appeals, has all the tests for this variance as required by law been considered by the Members?
(The Board of Zoning Appeal Members all responded “yes” to Vice Chairman Weidlich.)

Mrs. Huber polled the Board and with 5 “aye” votes (two members absent) the request for the variance was approved.

D. A request for a variance to allow the owner of 232 Harter Avenue to eliminate the garage at the residence. Said variance is requested from Section 153.105(B) “A single two-car garage is required.”

Mr. Von Bargen, owner of 232 Harter Avenue (arrived late to the meeting and was sworn in, along with the owners of 12076 Marwood Lane, by Vice Chairman Weidlich).

Mr. Von Bargen: I bought the property some months ago and was working on trying to fix it up; I bought it to rehab it; it was an eyesore to the community. I have worked on it and did not find out until I was basically done that I needed a variance on the house; from what I gathered it has been like this for fifteen years. There is a garage door there, but then there is a small room and the other part is a finished room like a family room. That is why I applied for a variance. I did not know that when I bought the house, I bought it as it was.

(At this time, Mr. Campion read the staff report.)

(Vice Chairman Weidlich opened the floor to comments from the audience; no one stepped forward.)

Mrs. Huber: I move to grant a variance from Section 153.105 (B), so as to allow a converted garage to remain. Said variance states that a single two-car garage is required. The property is located at 232 Harter Avenue; being a one car garage it was legal, nonconforming.
The motion was seconded by Mr. Danbury.

Vice Chairman Weidlich: I am going to take this opportunity to read a letter by Chairman Okum, regarding this request and another one we have. This is a suggested two-car garage; this is a legal nonconforming use and is one of the homes that were built with: (1)some storage space maintained even as they are converted already; (2)they must meet all current building and electrical codes; (3)if garage is converted, the garage door and appearance of garage shall be maintained; (4)if the overhead door is removed it should appear as if the door was not removed and the fašade shall be modified to be consistent with the rest of the front fašade; (5)concrete in front of opening should be removed to approximately 3’ wide to allow for planting and landscape area.

Mrs. Huber: I have a letter in front of me dated the 13th of August from
Mr. McErlane to Mr. Von Bargen and I don’t like the tone of it because this man has spent many thousands of dollars rehabbing a property that was absolutely a blight to the community of Springdale Terrace, and then to get this “you either do it or the City is going to go after you.”; that is a little much. Mr. Von Bargen did not do it; it has been done a long time ago. We had inspectors that did not find it at the time or a permit was not acquired, that is not this man’s fault.

Mr. Emerson: That whole garage has been converted over to a family room?

Mr. Von Bargen: Probably 80%, and then there is a small place that can be like an office in front.

Mr. Emerson: But, the garage door doesn’t open any longer?

Mr. Von Bargen: No; all the hardware was gone and it is finished behind it and insulated behind it. I had to replace a broken window in the garage door and that is how I saw that.

Mr. Emerson: I think it looks nice. When I passed there the other day it looks very nice.

Vice Chairman Weidlich: I too, would like to reiterate what Mr. Emerson said, I drove by there today and you have done a terrific job of cleaning the place up and it looks nice.

(At this time Vice Chairman Weidlich moved to deliberation on the motion.)

Mrs. Huber poled the Board and with 5 “aye” votes, (two members absent) the request for the variance was approved.

E. Vice Chairman Weidlich: A request for approval of a variance to allow the owner of the property at 12135 Cornavin Court to eliminate the garage at the residence; said variance is from Section 153.105(B) “A single two-car garage is required.”
Would the representative for 12135 Cornavin Court please step to the podium.

Mr. Darrell Lively and Delores Lively, property owners of 12135 Cornavin Court stepped forward: We bought this house at 12135 Cornavin Court in 1965, and lived there twelve years and raised two children there. We needed more room and we had a gentleman convert about 2/3 of the garage space into living quarters/family room. The garage door is intact as it has always been. To the best of our recollection we applied for a variance at that time. Right now we have a widow living there, it is rental property. We moved to the other side of Heritage Hill and have lived there thirty one years. We rent it at well below the market value, as sort of a ministry – I am a minister. The part that we converted is now being used as storage. We did pass the rental inspection this year.

(At this time, Mr. Campion read the staff report.)

(Vice Chairman Weidlich opened the floor to comments from the audience; no one stepped forward.)

Mrs. Huber: I move to grant a variance from Section 153.105 (B), so as to allow a single-car garage to remain a living space; said Section requires a two-car garage. The property is located at 12135 Cornavin Court and is a legal, nonconforming residence.

Mr. Emerson: I will second the motion.

Mrs. Huber: How did the Building Department learn of this; it has been converted since 1970?

Mr. Lively: We had the house inspected for rental purposes.

Mr. Diehl: What did you think of the rental inspection program?

Mr. Lively: It is a good idea. I think it will do much to improve the sights around the city. We live on the Sharonville side and I wish we had the same inspections. We have some properties that need attention in Heritage Hill.

Mrs. Huber poled the Board and with 5 “aye” votes, (two members absent) the request for the variance was approved.

A. (The owners of the property at 12076 Marwood Lane were moved to the end of the agenda.)
Request for approval of a variance to allow the owner of 12076 Marwood Lane to eliminate the garage at the residence; said variance is from Section 153.105(B) “A single two-car garage is required.”

Carlos Agustin: My name is Carlos Agustin and this is my Dad, Ernesto Agustin, owner of 12076 Marwood Lane. We have the garage converted because we need some extra space for storage because my Mom buys and stores clothes that she sends to our country for her family. On the other side, it is open and we store bicycles, and a lawnmower in there.

(At this time, Mr. Campion read the staff report.)

(Vice Chairman Weidlich opened the floor to comments from the audience; no one stepped forward.)

Mr. Emerson: I would like to make a motion that we approve a variance for
12076 Marwood Lane from Section 153.105(B) to allow a garage to be converted into storage area for outside tools and the other half separated off for clothes storage.
Mrs. Huber seconded the motion.

Mrs. Huber: How many vehicles do you have, and where do you park them?

Mr. Carlos Agustin: We have three, right now; four fit on our driveway; it is a wide driveway.

Mr. Diehl: You are going to keep the garage door just the way it is?

Mr. Carlos Agustin: Yes.

Mr. Emerson: Is this a permanent fixture or temporary?

Mr. Carlos Agustin: It could be converted back into a garage.

Mr. Danbury: Why would you want to build a wall when it is all for storage?

Mr. Carlos Agustin: We want to keep the tools separate from the clothes.

Mr. Emerson: Is there a door going from the clothes storage into the garage?

Mr. Carlos Agustin: No.

Vice Chairman Weidlich: We will move to the deliberation of the Board Members.
(There was no discussion from the Board Members.)

Mrs. Huber poled the Board and with 5 “aye” votes, (two members absent) the request for the variance was approved.

XI. DISCUSSION

Mr. Diehl: Is there a statute of limitation with the rental inspections?

Mr. Campion: No. The zoning code, until 2000 said you had to have a single-car garage; and then in 2000 it changed to two-car garage.

Mr. Diehl: If we crank this program up, we are just going to have more and more.

XII. ADJOURNMENT

Vice Chairman Weidlich: So, with that, I’ll accept a motion for adjournment.

Mrs. Huber moved to adjourn and Mr. Emerson seconded the motion, the Board of Zoning Appeals adjourned at 8:10 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,


________________________,2008 ___________________________________
            Chairman Dave Okum



________________________,2008 ___________________________________
            Secretary Jane Huber