The County of Wetaskiwin’s decision on a re-zoning to allow an RV storage area in Westerose will have to wait until the next meeting of council, after a dissenting vote.
After a public hearing closed and councilors considered voting on Barry and Eileen Dahlseide’s application to re-zone about four acres within Lot 11, Block 1, Plan 8220880, NE 9-46-28-W4M from Rural Residential (RR) to Urban Commercial (UC) to accommodate a Recreational Vehicle (RV) Storage Business proposed to hold 65 cold storage parking stalls, councilors failed to pass a motion To Consider Third Reading unanimously.
At the first appearance of a bylaw at council, Third Reading must be preceded by a motion To Consider Third Reading, and it must pass unanimously. If it isn’t a unanimous vote, the issue is set aside for a future meeting.
Reeve Terry Van de Kraats opened the public hearing for the Dahlseide’s application. Director of Planning David Blades presented the application.
He said referrals were sent out and the application publicly advertised. A number of responses from County of Wetaskiwin departments responded with concerns, including ensuring the development didn’t affect run-off, the large number of nearby residences and road access to the development.
A concern was received from the Louis Bull tribe, who noted clearing of trees was concerning to them. “Our concerns are directly related to impacts to our Constitutionally protected Aboriginal and Treaty Rights as clearing of trees results in loss of valuable wildlife habitat, wildlife which is important for the practice of our rights,” stated the letter.
Blades noted in his memo the application met certain zoning requirements, but “…the Public Hearing process is essential to determine other relevant concerns of the public in relation of the rezoning for their consideration.”
Barry spoke during the public hearing, and said he was trying to find a way to generate some income with this property and thought RV storage would be appropriate close to Pigeon Lake.
Several members of the public also spoke, all of who stated they had concerns about the application.
Dave Stewart said he was concerned about the north part of the parcel, as it was low and wet. He said he was also concerned the Urban Commercial zoning could be used for a completely different development in the future.
Keith Fisher said the area is a residential area and he was concerned about disruption to neighbour’s lives.
A fellow also spoke who said he was there on behalf of neighbour Rosemarie Weibel, who was also concerned the Urban Commercial zoning could be used for a business other than RV storage. Other neighbours also voiced similar concerns.
Councilor Ken Adair said he was concerned about increased traffic.
Blades said a buffer area could be added to the proposal which would further separate the commercial area from nearby residents.
Councilor Josh Bishop said there should be more buffer on the west side, about 60 meters wide.
Van de Kraats closed the public hearing.
Councilors passed First and Second reading, but the motion to Consider Third Reading had a 6 to 1 vote, councilor Dale Woitt dissenting, and since it was not unanimous, the issue must return to a future meeting.