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Council Moves Forward with Rural Zoning

The Kalona City Council voted Monday, August 4 to move forward on extending city zoning up to two miles beyond city limits.  Craig Spitzer was the lone opposition vote after a lengthy discussion in which about 75% of the audience opposed the move.  P&Z Chair Larry Christenson reiterated the "need" for zoning, so that the city could provide for orderly development (by halting anything that did not meet their approval) and provide neighbors the opportunity for input on the use of land nearby (while ignoring the fact that this also puts every landowner at the mercy of their neighbors and the zoning bureaucracy).  City Council members are Ken Herington, Mark Robe, Craig Spitzer, Greg Schmidt, Jenelle Bender, & Joe Schmidt.

The P&Z Commission will now seek quotes from consulting companies to help them write the zoning ordinance and Council will decide whether to accept the quote.  If so, P&Z will then work with the consultant to determine the area to be regulated and the language of the actual zoning regulation.  Comments were made again that mostly it would be zoned for current usage so that any change in use would require approval.  P&Z members are:  Larry Christenson, Sylvan Schlabach, Lori Tebockhorst, Karen Mitchell, and Ron Slechta.

If the council approves the ordinance, Iowa Code requires that two new members be added to the P&Z Commission and the Board of Adjustment, both drawn from the newly regulated area.  However, all authority ultimately rests with the City Council, and the residents of the newly regulated area are unable to vote for any council members-leaving them regulated without representation.