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Seymour City Council Discusses Property Issues

The Seymour City Council met Monday night and spent much of the evening discussing property. Specifically, the council discussed zoning, the need for residents to know what they are allowed to build and the importance of having an accurate survey.

The council discussed the property that was formerly home to a Holiday Inn on East Tipton Street. Shortly after the hotel went out of business, a rezoning request was approved in 2010 that changed the property to residential from commercial. The rezoning was approved with the understanding that the building would be refurbished as an apartment complex.

Since that time, the hotel was demolished. The council voted on first reading to change that plot of land from residential back to commercial. A second vote will need to take place before the rezoning is official.

The council later heard the introduction of an ordinance concerning building permit requirements. The request was put forth by Seymour's Planning and Zoning Commission.

The new ordinance would require all new construction, including fences and above-ground pools, to get a building permit. The current ordinance exempts fences and above ground pools.

Seymour Mayor Craig Luedeman says the city is finding numerous cases where homeowners have enhanced their property only to learn later that the structure is built over utility or water lines or too close to easements. In some cases, fences and outbuildings were built on property that did not belong to the homeowner.

Mayor Luedeman stressed that this is not a measure put together to get more money for city coffers. He says this is more about empowering city residents with the knowledge to make good decisions with the property and potentially save residents thousands of dollars for construction projects that would need to be torn down and rebuilt.

The council unanimously approved this request on first reading. A second reading is necessary to pass the ordinance.

The council also approved on first reading a measure that would require the installation of a key box emergency access system and lock standpipe caps on all new construction projects.

The key box emergency access system would be required on all new construction. This ordinance is targeting newly constructed apartment complex with at least four units. The proposal would provide a way for the fire department to enter locked buildings, including warehouses and businesses, to check on alarms without forcibly entering, and possibly damaging, the structure. Estimated cost for these key boxes is between $225 and $250.

The lock standpipe caps would serve as a barrier between thieves and the fire hydrant caps they target. Officials say the caps are targeted because they can be quickly sold to scrap metal yards. Along with replacement cost for the caps, the city must also flush any and all hydrants that have been tampered with. These flushings can cost the city thousands of dollars for each flushing.


This measure was also heard and approved on first reading.

Last Updated: Tuesday, June 25, 2013 7:02:07 AM

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