Council reviews proposed zoning code revision


SIDNEY — Monday evening Sidney City Council discussed details of an ordinance that was tabled in December on the newly revised Sidney Zoning Code.

On Dec. 13, 2021, Community Development Director Barbara Dulworth presented City Council with the Sidney Planning Commission’s recommendation to adopt the new code, which city staff has been working to complete. The re-write of the zoning code began with an evaluation and calibration to the city of Sidney’s Comprehensive Plan; staff has worked with consultant ZoneCo Inc. to simplify and rewrite it since November 2019.

The proposed, revised code was created with input from Sidney City Council, the Sidney Planning Commission, the re-write steering committee, and the general public. Dulworth noted the community as a whole was reached out to through posts on the city of Sidney’s website, question/comment/surveys solicited via the website and social media, and a focus-group of downtown stakeholders.

City staff presented a rough draft of revisions to the Planning Commission over three sessions to get final feedback beginning in July. The final proposed zoning code was presented on Dec. 13 to the Sidney City Council for consideration of adoption of the ordinance with the goal to implement the new code by Jan. 1, 2022. However, during that meeting, several council members still had numerous questions about various sections, so a final review of the revised code was pushed back to January.

Monday, Dulworth again went over sections of the zoning code revision including: the introduction and uses of the zoning code; districts and zones; landscaping; signage; off-street parking; generally applicable regulations that apply to all development, fencing, accessory uses and structures, and building design; nonconformities; administration, procedures and enforcement; and the glossary of terms at the end of the code. Next, discussions ensued among council members and city staff about numerous parts within the sections presented. Dulworth emphasized during the discussion the new code only applies to new developments or substantial redevelopments, not existing properties. The requirements laid out in the new code to be adopted will not apply as they would be grandfathered-in, she confirmed when asked.

At the end of the presentation and discussion, Dulworth was directed to make various changes to the proposed draft of the Sidney Zoning Code and bring the newest revision back for a final presentation of the final draft for consideration for adoption at City Council’s Jan. 10 meeting.

In other business, a review of the January Zoning Board of Appeals meeting, and a review of the prospective City Council agenda items for the next 30 days was given. There will be no Sidney Planning Commission meeting in January, as nothing is on the agenda.

In final business, the absence of Council members Jenny VanMatre, Steven Klinger and Mike Barhorst at the Monday evening regular council meeting was excused by City Council.

By Sheryl Roadcap

[email protected]

Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.

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