Ivins council reaches compromise for woman seeking to build affordable housing – St George News


IVINS – Ivins City Council said on Thursday that a resident seeking to convert her land from a house to affordable townhouses could get her additional housing, but not the townhouses.

Owner Sally Jensen Hands Out Information Brochure to Council Member Dennis Mehr at Ivins City Council Meeting at Ivins New Town Hall, Ivins, Utah Jan 6, 2021 | Photo by Chris Reed, St. George News

The decision came at the first council meeting of the year at the New Town Hall and the first for new council members Lance Anderson and Mike Scott, who were sworn in at the start of the meeting.

Council followed a recommendation from the city’s Planning Commission that the request to convert the medium density residential lot at 145 W. 100 South to a high density lot be refused but replaced by a change that will allow two or three traditional houses to be added to the lot.

Council unanimously approved the recommendation after the owner presented her case.

Ivins City Manager Dale Coulam and Council Member Mike Scott at the Ivins City Council Meeting at the New Ivins Town Hall, Ivins, Utah January 6, 2021 | Photo by Chris Reed, St. George News

Scott, who was elected in November and held one of two seats on elected council members Cheyne McDonald and Derek Larsen, said the move was a good compromise between the owner and her neighbors who had expressed some opposition to the townhouses on the lot.

“When you look at a zoning change for me, you want to look at all the surrounding properties and you want it to be consistent. That’s the biggest problem… you really have to protect the people who are there, ”Scott said. “You also have to protect the owner who is trying to develop his property. So there is a balance. It should really stay single-family, but let’s try to help the owner maximize that single-family use.

Google Maps image shows the property, shaded in blue, which was discussed at an Ivins city council meeting on January 6, 2021 | Photo via Google Maps, St. George News

Sally Jensen, who owns the house on the largely empty property, told council affordable housing came to her mind when deciding what to do with the empty lot on her property which is right next to Troy’s Custom Body & Paint.

“The goal is to bring more affordable housing to the area,” Jensen said. “For me, the best use of this land is to build affordable housing. “

In addition to two opposition emails Mayor Chris Hart said he received, five other residents spoke out against Jensen’s request for high density zoning, though three said they were open to Jensen being allowed to build additional smaller single family homes on the property.

Brianna Dummar, whose home is right next to the property, has expressed concern for her four children in the face of increased traffic in the area, especially after her husband died in September.

“I work for the highway patrol in Hurricane and I’m not home when my kids come home from school on a scooter,” Dummar said.

But Beth Gale, while opposing the high density, said she was not against any new housing in the area. “I know Sally is looking for people. That’s what’s difficult for me, ”said Gale. “I don’t mind her building a few houses there. I’m just averse to townhouses.

Update on the new police headquarters

The council received an update on the renovation of the nearby old town hall into a new headquarters for the Santa Clara-Ivins City Police Department.

Artist’s conception of the old town hall of Ivins after its conversion into the headquarters of the SCI public security building for the Santa Clara-Ivins police department | Photo courtesy of Ivins City, St. George News

Further exterior changes will take place for what will be renamed the SCI Public Safety Building which Hart says is needed to repair the leaky stairwells in the building’s basement, replace the 25-year-old roof and repair the interior to trace it back to law enforcement regulations. There are also cosmetic changes that will take place to remove the Roman columns in favor of an exterior that looks more like the entrance to the New Town Hall.

The price tag now stands at $ 154,838, which has already been budgeted for.

New role for former board member

The council voted unanimously to set in motion on Thursday an unprecedented measure to allow McDonald’s to still represent the city on the The Washington County Solid Waste District Council despite its removal from the council in November.

File photo of Cheyne McDonald, then a member of the Ivins city council, at the council meeting at Ivins town hall on July 15, 2021. Ivins, Utah | Photo by Chris Reed, St. George News

McDonald’s has been on the board for 12 years and is chairman of the group that oversees waste management for all of Washington County.

Usually, a council member from each local town sits on the council.

Ivins will still need to post a vacancy notice and accept further applications for the post before holding a formal board member hearing in February.

Board members expressed appreciation for the work McDonald has done on the board and said they saw no problem in him continuing in this role even though he was no longer on the board. . This included new member Scott, who borrowed a pun on waste management.

Because of the work he has done, while he can and is willing to do it, this is too good an opportunity to waste, ”Scott said to laughter from those in the line. bedroom.

In another move, council member Dennis Mehr was asked by council for a second term as mayor Pro-Tem d’Ivins.

New way of seeing the board

In another first, the meeting was the first meeting of the Ivins city council to be broadcast live on YouTube.

“This will allow more of our citizens, especially with COVID raging again, to watch our meetings,” said City Manager Dale Coulam.

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