Oroville adopts changes to Zoning Map

OROVILLE – After a closed-record hearing the Oroville Council approved a request for a zoning map amendment and Conditional Use Permit on behalf of Oroville Reman and Reload.

The proposal was to make a zoning map amendment to better reflect property owned by the company that has been annexed into the city. Concurrent to the zoning amendment hearing the council also took up the matter of a Conditional Use Permit application submitted by the company. The CUP would allow Reload and Reman to expand and alter the lumber mill’s operation located at 301 9th. Avenue. Among the changes Reload and Reman is proposing is the addition of a kiln to dry wood, according to Kathy Jones, Oroville’s clerk/treasurer.

The Tuesday, Oct. 19 hearing took place at the council’s regular meeting and was closed to public testimony because the opportunity to make comments was already provided at a meeting of the Oroville Planning Commission. Christian Johnson, Oroville’s permit administrator, entered a draft of the minutes of that Oroville Planning Commission meeting that took place on Oct. 6, as well as a record of the hearing.

“This proposal is open for discussion among the council,” said Mayor Chuck Spieth. “You may also ask staff at this time to clarify any issues of record.”

Councilman Ed Naillon asked whether the burner being used for the kiln was of the best technology regarding health issues. Johnson replied that as long as the burner met state Department of Ecology standards he did not feel the city could be more restrictive in its requirements.

Councilman Walt Hart III wanted to know whether Grunert and Reman and Reload representatives had reached a settlement regarding property boundaries and other issues raised by Seig Grunert, whose family has property adjacent to the manufacturer. Johnson said that a 25-foot activity setback would be established and that it was his understanding the two parties were working on an amicable agreement.

The mayor closed the discussion and called for a motion on the council’s decision. Councilman Tony Councilman Tony Koepke made a motion to adopt the planning commission’s Findings of Facts and Conclusions and approve the zoning map amendment and the Conditional Use Permit. The motion received a second from Councilman Jon Neal and carried.

The request by Betty Hart for two 15-minute parking spots next to her vehicle licensing business at Main and 12th at the last council meeting was revisited. Councilman Walt Hart suggested that one 15-minute parking space on the north side of 12th St. be established, as the west side of Main from 11th to 12th is currently two-hour parking. He also suggested that a 15-minute spot be established just east of the alley on the north side of Appleway between Ironwood and Main. Councilman Hart discussed this additional spot at the council’s last meeting saying that Appleway Video customers often had a hard time dropping off rentals because of those who were parked at the library and other nearby businesses often took up all the available on-street parking. His fellow council members agreed and an ordinance will be prepared for both the new 15-minute parking spots.

Rod Noel, Superintendent of Public Works, updated the council on several ongoing projectes, including the Main Street Pedestrian Project. The mayor was also authorized to sign an agreement with the state for an additional $92,728 in increased funding to pay for changes the state requested be made to the Main Street sidewalk project.

In regards to the Biosolids Project that was installed at the city’s wastewater treatment plant, Noel updated the council on the status of the dewatering skid installed by FKC and the production of Class A Biosolids. Neal made a motion to accept FKC’s portion of the project, contingent on the receipt of the final paperwork and Letter of Performance Certificate from Ecology.

Noel also discussed submitting an application for Surface Transportation Program (STP) funds for an overlay project on Central Ave., starting from Main St., east to Cherry St., then north on Cherry to the bridge. The application was due in two days and required a 13.5 percent match, which the Transportation Improvement Board is currently funding, according to Noel. The city’s match would be zero percent if the application was approved and construction would be targeted for 2014-2015. Council authorized the application to the STP board.

The next regular meeting of the Oroville City Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 2 starting at 7 p.m. in the city hall council chambers located at 1308 Ironwood St.

About Gary DeVon

Gary DeVon is the managing editor of the Okanogan Valley Gazette-Tribune and celebrated his 25th year at the newspaper in August 2012. He graduated from Gonzaga University with a degree in Communications - Print Journalism, with an emphasis in photojournalism. He is a proud alumnus of Oroville High School. His family first settled in Okanogan County in the late 1800s. His parents are Judy DeVon and the late Larry DeVon and he has two younger brothers - Dante and Michael. Many family members still call Oroville home. He is single with a grown daughter, Segornae Douglas and a young granddaughter, Erin.

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