The public conversation about the proposed Broadway Boulevard yard parking ordinance continued Thursday night at the Citizens for a Clean Sedalia Committee meeting.
The Sedalia City Council discussed the proposal during its July 14 work session, during which it decided to send the ordinance back to Clean Sedalia for further discussion. Thursday saw the fine tuning of the most recent draft in an effort to compromise with concerned homeowners and councilmembers.
Again the issue of grandfathering in the two main properties which sparked the initial proposal.
“I think we all agree the parking on Broadway is detrimental to the public image,” said committee member Jack Robinson. “The question is, so then we have two properties which you would like to extend those. So you can say no one can park on Broadway and if these two properties want to continue they can get a special use permit. Or you can say we recommend that we pass the ordinance and grandfather those two in. Those are your two options.”
Most of the members were in agreement with Robinson, with Chairman Mary Merritt noting that the ordinance is meant to prevent the spread of front yard parking, and grandfathering would still allow that prevention to happen.
“These other two places are ancillaries, if they went away that would be good, particularly the one, but we really want it to stop,” Robinson said.
The committee decided on finalizing three points, which will now be added to a new ordinance draft that will be on the Aug. 4 council agenda:
• Adding in a special permit requirement for anyone who would like to possibly alter their parking situation. Once a citizen applies for a permit it will go before the Zoning and Planning Committee and then the council will vote on issuing the permit.
• Grandfathering in the two current properties that have altered their parking area, making the new ordinance apply to any future alterations.
• Add the stipulation that anyone who requests a special permit to alter their driveway must have a driveway made of concrete, asphalt or pavers; gravel will not be allowed.
After a question from committee member Shirley Neff, it was noted by City Attorney Anne Gardner that grandfathering in the two properties will not change if the property changes hands — it applies to the property, not the property owner.
The council had asked for a recommendation from the committee regarding the possibility of extending the ordinance city-wide, and the committee unanimously voted that it was not in favor of the expansion.
Chief Building Official Andy Burt was in attendance at the meeting to ask for the support of the committee for “proactive” enforcement of the exterior property portion of the Property Maintenance Code on a complaint-based system. Burt said the idea is that when the city receives a complaint from a citizen regarding a code violation, an enforcement officer would then survey the entire neighborhood or surrounding blocks for other violations.
Items included in the new proactive approach includes looking at the state of protective treatment, such as paint, foundation walls, exterior wails, roof and drainage, decorative features, and decks, porches and balconies, all of which would have to be visible from the street.
City Administrator Gary Edwards said the city has already started this proactive approach with smaller violations like grass, weeds and trash and that the number of those violations has decreased.