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Board of Adjustment Minutes - February 20, 2002

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Board of Adjustment Minutes - February 20, 2002 ...

HUBBARD COUNTY

    Board of Adjustment Meeting

    9:00 A.M. on Monday, March 15, 2010

    Knight opened the meeting with the following members present: Tom Krueger, Jerry Novak, Jerry Cole, Charles “Chick” Knight, and Arnold Christianson. Also present were Environmental

    Services Officer Eric Buitenwerf and Recording Secretary Janet Thompson.

    Knight opened the meeting by reading the purpose of the Board of Adjustment to the audience.

Approval of the January 19, 2010 Minutes:

    Christianson moved to approve the January 19, 2010 minutes as presented. Krueger seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

OLD BUSINESS:

    No old business was presented.

NEW BUSINESS:

    Variance Application # 1-V-10 by Michael W. and Barbara A. Johnson: Part of Gov’t Two

    (2), Section Two (2), Township One Hundred Forty (140), Range Thirty-four (34), Henrietta Township on Boulder Lake, Parcel ID # 13.02.01500. Applicants are requesting a variance from Sections 502.2 and 601 of the Hubbard County Shoreland Management Ordinance for an after-the-fact approval of an accessory storage shed located in the shore impact zone of Boulder Lake. Boulder Lake is a recreational development lake.

    Michael Johnson presented his variance application to the Board. Johnson said his variance is in regard to a shed that is close to the lake. It falls under Sections 502.2 and 601 of the Hubbard County Shoreland Management Ordinance. Johnson presented a letter documenting his permanent disability from physician Chris A. Stuart, MD. See exhibit “A” on file with the

    Environmental Services Office.

    Johnson said that building a boathouse next to the lake will assist his disability and prevent him from needing to haul his boating and fishing accessories back 250 feet from the lake.

    Cole noted that there is plenty of room on the lot to accommodate a shed at the 100 foot setback mark. What the Board wanted to see was documented proof of the disability which Johnson has now provided. With that support of the disability, Cole was supportive of the variance.

    Buitenwerf said that the documentation supplied by Johnson does show a back injury which was verified by a medical doctor. The main issue for the Board to consider is that the Ordinance allows under Section 601.3.b. a structure not to exceed ten feet in height and occupy an area no greater than 48 square feet. The proposed structure is dimensions of 10’ x 12’. The variance is

    necessary for the size of the structure, not the fact that the disability exists.

    Cole desired to see the structure reduced to comply with the size requirements of the Ordinance.

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Christianson suggested planting vegetation around the shed to create visual screening.

Johnson said that he just completed a large addition to his cabin and construction of the shed.

    The lot will be landscaped.

Knight had an issue with allowing the structure within the shore impact zone. He felt the shed

    should be moved further back on the lot because it is not on a solid foundation, and there are no

    topographical limitations to the lot preventing its relocation.

Novak wanted to see the shed moved back to the 50-foot mark which would be just outside the

    shore impact zone. He too would like to see the overall size of the structure reduced as the shed is twice the size of what the Ordinance allows by permit.

Johnson said that he had no issue moving the structure back 15-feet to comply with the 50-foot

    setback mark. He did have an issue with the reduction of the size.

Knight said that if the structure is moved back, he would consider allowing the larger size

    structure.

Public comment:

    ? Gary Stolzenberg addressed the Board. Stolzenberg was supportive of moving the structure

    back outside of the shore impact zone. He pointed out that Coalition of area Lake

    Associations (COLA) provides assistance for tree planting through the Soil and Water

    Conservation District (SWCD).

No correspondence was presented.

Cole moved to approve Variance Application # 1-V-10 by Michael and Barbara Johnson as

    presented with the condition that the shed be relocated to the 50-foot ordinary high water mark

    setback by June 15, 2010. Krueger seconded the motion.

Knight read the findings of fact into the record.

An area variance may be granted only where the strict enforcement of county zoning controls

    will result in “practical difficulty”. A determination that a “practical difficulty” exists is based

    upon the consideration of the following criteria as defined by the Minnesota Supreme Court in In

    re the Matter of the Decision of County of Otter Tail Board of Adjustment to Deny a Variance to

    Cyril Stadsvold and Cynara Stadsvold.:

    1. Is the request a substantial variation from the requirements of the zoning ordinance? Why or

    why not?

No. If the shed is moved back beyond the 50 foot mark, it would not be a substantial variation.

    2. Will the request have an adverse effect on government services? Why or why not?

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    No. There should be no effect on government services.

3. Will the requested variance effect a substantial change in the character of the neighborhood or

    will it result in a substantial detriment to neighboring properties? Why or why not?

No. With the addition of the shrubbery that the requester has agreed to, there will be no detriment

    to the neighboring properties or to the views of anyone in the property.

4. Is there another feasible method to alleviate the need for a variance? (Economic considerations

    play a role in the analysis under this factor) Why or why not?

    No. The disability was stated and proven to us.

5. How did the need for a variance arise? Did the landowner create the need for the variance?

    Explain.

    The need has arisen because of the 70% disability that the gentleman has suffered.

6. Why did the applicant fail to obtain a variance/or comply with the applicable requirements

    before commencing work? Did the applicant act in good faith? Why or Why not?

I do not have a good answer for that. Possibly he was not aware of the situation. An 8’ x 8’

    plastic shed was located there for ten years. It was ugly and they felt they were doing the right

    thing by taking and moving it out and putting something up that complimented their house and

    environment.

7. Did the applicant attempt to comply with the law by obtaining the proper permits? Why or

    Why not?

    No. The applicant will do that today or as soon as he has a chance.

8. Did the applicant obtain a permit from another entity that violated the law? Provide

    explanation below.

    No. None that I am aware of.

9. Did the applicant make a substantial investment in the property? Provide details below.

Yes. He made a substantial investment in the shed. He painted it in earth tone colors too which

    is commendable.

10. Did the applicant complete the repairs/construction before the applicant was informed of the

    impropriety? Please provide details below.

    Yes. I believe that he did.

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11. Is the nature of property residential/recreational and not commercial? Please provide details

    below.

It is residential on Boulder Lake.

12. Are there other similar structures on the lake? Please provide details below.

I did not see any, but I didn’t really look that close.

13. Would the minimum benefits to the county appear to be far outweighed by the detriment the

    applicant would suffer if forced to remove the structure? Why or why not?

    I don’t believe that the County will see much of a benefit at all other than the fact that it would bring everything into the Ordinance.

14. In light of all of the above factors, would denying a variance serve the interests of justice?

    Why or why not?

No it would not.

Facts supporting the answer to each question, above, are hereby certified to be the Findings of the

    Board of Adjustment. This is in accordance with Section 1104 of the Hubbard County Shoreland

    Management Ordinance.

The motion carried unanimously.

    Variance Application # 2-V-10 by Wayne A. and Holly B. Koop: Lot Four (4), Pritchetts Retreat, Section Seven (7), Township One Hundred Forty-two (142), Range Thirty-five (35),

    Clover Township on Little Mantrap Lake, Parcel ID # 05.38.00400. Applicants are requesting a

    variance from Section 704.7 of the Hubbard County Shoreland Management Ordinance to

    request to amend variance # 47-V-09: 1. change 12’ drainfield setback to house to 10’ setback; 2.

    increase height of proposed structure slightly to account for mathematical mistakes in original

    application height calculation. Little Mantrap is a recreational development lake.

Wayne Koop presented his variance application to the Board. Koop said he has an approved

    variance # 47-V-09 to build a log home on his property on Little Mantrap Lake. Today’s request is to amend this variance to allow for the height of the structure and to redesign if necessary for

    the new septic codes. The bunkhouse/garage will be connected to the log home along with the

    decks for fire egress safety reasons. The height approved on the first variance was slightly lower

    by approximately 2 ? feet. Prior to getting a design, they did not know the overall height of the

    structure. The total structure height will now be a maximum of 34 feet which is under the 35

    foot Ordinance allowance. The rooflines will align with the existing garage/bunkhouse. The

    new septic drainfield setback was proposed at a 12-foot measurement from the house. Not being

    familiar with log home design, the logs must extend out over a covered deck two feet further

    creating a distance two feet closer to the septic drainfield.

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Krueger had no issue with the variance as amended. He questioned if the initial variance

    addressed landscaping the area in which the old home sat.

    Koop said that he will be restoring the area. There is a gradual slope which will need to be filled in and reseeded. They will also be relocating trees.

Krueger suggested a condition on approval include a condition that the shore impact zone be

    restored and revegetated per a vegetation plan developed by the Environmental Services Office.

Koop had no objection to the condition since that is his intent.

Novak questioned if the cabin to be removed is on a slab or foundation.

Koop said it is on a concrete block foundation. Footings and a well will be removed.

Knight and Cole agreed the proposed plan will be an asset to the county and an improvement to

    the property.

No public comment was given.

Krueger moved to approve Variance Application # 2-V-10 by Wayne A. and Holly B. Koop as

    presented with the condition that the shore impact zone be restored and revegetated per a

    vegetation plan developed by the Environmental Services Office. Christianson seconded the

    motion.

Knight read the findings of fact into the record.

An area variance may be granted only where the strict enforcement of county zoning controls

    will result in “practical difficulty”. A determination that a “practical difficulty” exists is based upon the consideration of the following criteria as defined by the Minnesota Supreme Court in In

    re the Matter of the Decision of County of Otter Tail Board of Adjustment to Deny a Variance to

    Cyril Stadsvold and Cynara Stadsvold.:

1. Is the request a substantial variation from the requirements of the zoning ordinance?

    Why or why not?

No. He will be moving back so it is an improvement. It was requested before and this is just a

    change to that request.

2. Will the request have an adverse effect on government services? Why or why not?

No. There will be no impact at all.

3. Will the requested variance effect a substantial change in the character of the neighborhood

    or will it result in a substantial detriment to neighboring properties? Why or why not?

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No. It will actually be an improvement.

4. Is there another feasible method to alleviate the need for a variance? (Economic

    considerations play a role in the analysis under this factor) Why or why not?

No. It is a deteriorating house. It seems like it is necessary and I can see where it is necessary to

    make a change like this. Removing the other house will make a difference there.

5. How did the need for a variance arise? Did the landowner create the need for the

    variance? Explain.

The need made an appearance once the plans were finalized as to how this building would appear.

    This is just a minor change to the initial variance.

6. In light of all of the above factors, would denying a variance serve the interests of justice?

    Why or why not?

No.

Facts supporting the answer to each question, above, are hereby certified to be the Findings of the

    Board of Adjustment. This is in accordance with Section 1104 of the Hubbard County Shoreland

    Management Ordinance.

The motion carried unanimously.

Variance Application # 3-V-10 by Daniel J. and Donna M. Rehkamp: Gov’t Lot Five (5),

    Section Thirty (30), Township One Hundred Forty (140), Range Thirty-three (33), Nevis

    Township on Fifth Crow Wing Lake, Parcel ID # 21.30.00600. Applicants are requesting a

    variance from Section 1014, Item 6.C of the Hubbard County Shoreland Management Ordinance

    (SMO) requesting the number of spaces provided for continuous beaching, mooring, or docking

    of watercraft exceed the number of such spaces allowed by the SMO for a residential planned

    unit development. The SMO will allow three (3) spaces for tier 1 use only. The application

    requests eleven (11) spaces for use by units located in tiers 1-4. Fifth Crow Wing Lake is a

    recreational development lake.

Daniel Rehkamp, and Tom Miller, Arro of Park Rapids, presented the variance application to the

    Board.

Rehkamp addressed the Board. Rehkamp owns 43 acres of land on the southwest corner of Fifth

    Crow Wing Lake. His request takes approximately 21 acres from the total 43 acres where the six

    cabins currently exist and split the property basically in half. The waterfront cabin area was

    approved by a previous conditional use application converting it from an operating resort into a

    common interest community, planned unit development (PUD). Five additional back lots will be

    added outside of tiers one and two. This variance request is for an additional eight dock spaces

    to accommodate the eleven cabins in the association. Rehkamp felt this request will be a better

    use of the property and the current impact to the lake will be reduced by decreasing the number

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    of boats entering and exiting the lake than what exists with the current resort operation. The dock spaces will be limited to one per residential unit. It also limits the number of docks extending out into the lake with a new docking facility which will extend off from the shoreline twice verses the five separate dock units which currently exist. One dock is for safe landing and mooring of boats. As a resort operation there is a constant roll-over of recreational boating use which creates a heavy lake impact. Residents tend to create less of an impact to the landing and shoreline verses the constant in and out traffic of resort use.

    Knight questioned Rehkamp if he was aware of the Department of Natural Resources ruling which allows only tier one units permanent dock slips. This request is for a dock which is approximately 80-100 feet along the shoreline. He questioned how much space is planned between slips.

    Rehkamp said that there would be an average of approximately 16-20 foot maximum difference between the slips. This separation is necessary for safe mooring.

    Miller said that this request is consistent and small in comparison to other PUDs which have been granted approval by the County.

Knight questioned if there is a public access on Fifth Crow Wing Lake.

    Rehkamp said that there is not. He has allowed all Fifth Crow Wing residents to use his facility for that purpose as well as providing access for the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for purposes of stocking the lake and completing their lake monitoring surveys.

    Cole had an issue with this variance request in regards to what other developers may do if the variance is approved. He referenced a neighboring resort property.

    Miller pointed out that this is a variance request for this specific property. Any other variance request would need similar approval and review by the Board of Adjustment.

    In addition, Rehkamp pointed out that currently as a private residence, the DNR does not restrict the number of docks or watercraft for residential units. There are a number of docks along the lakeshore which have four, five, or more boats per residence. The declarations for Rice Bay Association, limits the number of watercrafts per unit to one.

    Cole said he understood and was not personally against PUDs or CICs. He felt they are a benefit to area lakes as well as a well run resort is. He questioned the long-term impact these conversions will have on the County.

    Krueger said the property needs to be reviewed as a whole. It was his understanding that this PUD was under density, with the option for possibly several more units.

    Rehkamp said he could possibly add more units if he added a tier four to the overall development.

Buitenwerf clarified that the property is right at residential density.

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Miller added - for the area that he has included in the overall plan.

    Rehkamp said he has removed a cabin and septic system to make sure that he complied and stayed within the Ordinance density requirements. There are no variance requests for density.

    Krueger said that he considered three aspects to this variance request. Along with the overall density of the acreage, greater than half of this property’s lakefront is in wetlands. These

    wetlands retain and preserve a large area of his frontage in a natural state. Finally, it was his opinion that the requirements by the State are biased towards PUDs. If this property were for a private individual, they would be able to have several docks.

    Novak questioned if this property had remained as a resort - if the eleven docks would be allowed.

    Buitenwerf said that it depends on if it is a commercial resort operation. Distinction would be drawn on whether or not the use was a grandfathered use predating the Ordinance or not. Those resorts never would have been previously approved by a conditional use operating permit. If it were that type of resort, then there is no regulation as to the number of docks. If it is a resort operation that commenced under a conditional use permit, then it would have to abide by the same criteria that the residential planned unit development being developed here must comply with.

Christianson questioned if the dock would be a floating dock system?

    Rehkamp said that he is considering a harbor type system rather than multiple floating docks. He was concerned with the stability and safety of the floating dock systems.

    Knight said that he was concerned with the type of the docking that is suggested. He said the request would take up approximately 100 feet of solid front of the lakeshore. He requested an opinion from Buitenwerf.

    Buitenwerf said that there are a number of variables to consider. First the number of boats being brought in and out of the lake will be reduced with the allowance of the additional docks. The impact to the shoreline with that large of a size of docking system in place would depend upon the vegetation and the type of shoreline in existence. He suggested the DNR representative present could speak better to that question.

    Cole referenced the adjacent resort owner who has eleven dock slips. He asked permission to use two of the dock slips for boat rentals. Due to this request, Cole concluded that people in other tiers do not want to use the lake as much as the people who live on the lake. He suggested Rehkamp would not lose anything if he did not have all the requested docks.

    Rehkamp said that Cole is again comparing two different types of properties. This is residential and that is a commercially run resort.

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Krueger’s opinion differed. He felt that each residential unit will want to have a boat space.

Public comment:

    ? Doug Kingsley, Minnesota DNR Area Fisheries Supervisor, addressed the Board.

    Kingsley agreed with Rehkamp that the DNR crews have used his access site for stocking

    the lake as well as access to the lake. In Rehkamp’s proposed development, DNR has no

    objection to maintaining that ramp for use of people within the development. The

    reasons for the limitation on the number of slips within a development like this-within the

    Ordinance-is to minimize the impact on fish, wildlife, water quality, and the lake itself.

    The DNR has worked with the County Board and the Environmental Services Office,

    providing recommendations for limiting the number of spaces in other developments,

    PUDs and other types of developments. In many cases, these recommendations were

    incorporated as conditions of the permit. He had a serious concern with how this

    variance may open up the flood-gate of others who would like to have access to the lake

    from second or third tiers. He felt approval may set a bad precedent for future

    developments in general. He strongly discouraged approval of this variance request.

Correspondence:

    ? Letter dated 3/3/10 by Daniel and Nancy Carlson was read into the record. See exhibit

    “B” on file with the Environmental Services Office.

Rehkamp addressed the Carlsons letter. Rehkamp said currently as a resort, they are not

    permitted for three docks, but rather eleven. Regarding the comment of safety, as a fireman for

    nineteen years and a water rescue personnel, this variance will actually lessen the number of

    boats that are put into the water. As an operating resort permitted for eleven slips, which roll-

    over weekly, this request will place one single boat in for each residence, and limit that number

    down from the number of people that roll-over every week utilizing the lake. He questioned

    Board member Krueger about his judgment and opinion on if the amount of impact to the lake

    would be higher or lower as an operating PUD.

Krueger said he personally has converted his resort property to a PUD. He has viewed a

    substantial reduction in impact to the lake and lake usage upon the conversion. The owners at

    Krueger’s PUD are probably up about every other weekend. That is two days out of fourteen

    days. As a resort, it goes hard, day after day after day all day long. Each owner will want a

    personal dock and it aids in the sale of the units.

Cole agreed that a PUD will see less impact on the lake, but he still felt that by allowing

    everybody to have a dock on the lake, he believed that there would be environmental damage

    created that wouldn’t be seen with fewer docks.

Krueger clarified that this proposal is for one dock with multiple slips.

Cole said if the residents show up every other week, then they will only use the ramp every other

    week.

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    Kingsley said that resorts receive additional considerations from the DNR when granting permits for aquatic vegetation removal. It is recognized that resorts serve a large number of people. The same holds true as far as the number of mooring spaces. Resorts are granted more leniency than private property owners. Addressing the impacts with a dock as large as 100 feet, with that area of shoreline, there is aquatic vegetation being removed with a permit by Rehkamp. Should that area not be removed, it will regenerate itself to wild rice which is typical along that shoreline and will offer benefits to the lake, fish and wildlife.

    Rehkamp said that he researched two similar PUDs-Run Away Bay and Belletaine Estates-which have been granted dock usage. Run Away Bay consists of 25 units. Twelve of those units sit on the south side of County 80. According to their declarations, Article VI, each of the 25 units is permitted use of the dock space. Belletaine Estates Owners Association, of the seven units with 341 feet of frontage, each of those units has dock space. Both of theses PUDs are outside of the current restrictions.

    Krueger pointed out that Run Away Bay was one of the first PUD conversions in the County. He personally believed that the Board made a mistake in their approval of Run Away Bay’s

    allowances. He felt it should have no bearing on the current request.

    Knight reminded those present that each variance item is reviewed and considered individually on its own merits.

    Rehkamp was concerned with the continued reference by Cole and others of a neighboring resort, Shady Lawn. He reminded the Board that he is not Shady Lawn and was concerned with the comparison.

    Cole said that it is really hard to compare anything to Lake Belletaine which is four times larger than Fifth Crow Wing Lake and is within a different watershed district. He personally lives on Sixth Crow Wing Lake. He understood and appreciated the allowance that Rehkamp has given to his neighbors to access the lake through his property.

    Novak said that he was torn on this one. If left at three docks, the other ones would have to take their boats in and out every day. He felt doing that would disturb the vegetation more than having the docks.

    Krueger was supportive of the request. PUDs drastically reduce the impact to the lake and also, Rehkamp has greater than half of his lakefront that is already serving the need of preserving the lakefront.

Christianson agreed with Krueger.

    Krueger moved to approve Variance Application # 3-V-10 by Daniel J. and Donna M. Rehkamp as presented. Christianson seconded the motion.

    Knight read the findings of fact into the record.

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