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.
No old business was presented.
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.
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
? 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
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?
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?
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
7. Did the applicant attempt to comply with the law by obtaining the proper permits? Why or
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
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
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.
11. Is the nature of property residential/recreational and not commercial? Please provide details
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
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.
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