Proposed rezoning for CDL driving school shelved
The Clinton County Planning and Zoning Commission held three public hearings on Thursday, February 6. Two were approved while the third was tabled, likely until the April meeting.
The hearings took little time for the first two hearings. However, the third, a request by William and Tiffany Foreman of Smithville, took the bulk of the night’s time.
The Foremans requested a rezoning of two parcels, one being six acres and the second being a little more than 10 acres, from agricultural zoning to commercial zoning. The property is located on the east side of 169 Highway, west of F Highway and south of 208th Street in Trimble, Mo. The rezoning is requested in order to allow the Foremans to use the property to operate JTMF. INC., a CDL driving school.
According to Daniel Hartman, an official proxy representing the petitioners, the property has no improvements or structures currently, and has been utilized for crops.
The Foremans currently own two trucking companies, contracting with FedEx and other trucking enterprises. The request is to allow them to build a 90-foot by 100-foot building for classes and truck storage. The school would operate Monday through Saturday during daylight hours, according to the Foremans. They propose to utilize 10.27 of the rezoned acres for the building and parking lot for driver training with the remaining 6 acres to be utilized at some point in the future.
“I’ve been in the trucking industry for 26 years, contracting with FedEx and other companies, and I see a need for a driver training school in this area,” Foreman explained. “We selected this land because of its proximity to 169 Highway. (The department of transportation) has done a traffic survey. Currently there are no improvements on the property. We hope to run a school for individuals to get the training they need to get their Class-A licenses. It takes 180 hours of classroom and driving experience and we expect to operate the school for between six to ten drivers at a time.”
He also told the zoning board that he is a certified CDL instructor.
Thirteen letters were mailed to neighboring landowners with six attending the meeting. All of those receiving letters indicated they were opposed to the rezoning request, with three speaking against the request during the public hearing. Marc Jamerson, Teresa McNeal, and Mario Fantasma all spoke out in opposition to the rezoning request. Their opposition ranged from noise, traffic, dust issues, and property values dropping, as well as a concern regarding the additional rezoned six acres.
Marc Jamerson spoke out against the rezoning, stating, “I’m also concerned about the six acres and what that will be used for in the future. If this business fails, what’s to keep a QuickTrip or other types of businesses from coming. Keep this property (agricultural) and not commercial.”
There was much discussion among commission members. Steve Mowry asked whether commercial or industrial business belonged in a rural residential area. He stated that the agricultural zoning used in Clinton County is primarily for residential properties, small farms, and that currently is the most important business in the area.
Board member Terry Beers stated, “I’ve been a member of this board since before dirt was invented. We have stayed away from putting commercial zoning in a residential area. We have used a special use permit in the past as a way to handle this. Once a property is zoned commercial, it’s that way forever.”
When a special use permit is granted, that designation goes with the business, and if that business fails or desires some major change, then that special use permit is up for reconsideration by the zoning commission.
Michael Gassman expressed concern for the adjoining property owners’ opposition. However, he did not want to stop a new business from coming to the county.
Chair Michael Adair stated he felt there were two issues. One is the replat issue and the second is the rezoning issue and he wondered if the petitioners would be willing to temporarily withdraw this request, develop a more specific plan for the property, and present it to both property owners and the board at a later time.
Mr. Foreman agreed with this proposal and asked if bringing it back to the commission in April was acceptable. However, there will not be any new letters mailed nor a new public notice, as the notices and letters were mailed for this public hearing for this meeting.
Presiding Clinton County Commissioner Pat Clark was in attendance at this public hearing and asked if the zoning administrator could make phone calls to all those in attendance when this hearing would resume. The zoning administrator agreed to do this when the Foremans inform the office of their intent to have the matter brought back to the zoning commission.
The two other public hearings were far less controversial. The first was a request by Darlene Still of Trimble requesting a subdivision of 26.5 acres into two parcels, one 20 acres and one 6.5 acres. She is requesting the 6.5 acres be rezoned from AG-A to AG-B. The property is located on the west side of SW Arnold Road, north of SW 204th Street in Trimble. There was no opposition, no board discussion, and the requests were approved 7-0.
The second item for consideration by the zoning board was a request by John Anderson of Trimble, Mo., asking for a subdivision and rezoning of 15.01 acres from AG-A to AG-B as well as a replat of six parcels in and near Normandy Heights.
Mr. Anderson stated he is requesting these actions in order to provide additional land to his five neighbors that have small yards, in case any of them had septic problems in the future. The additional space provided would allow them to have the necessary space to resolve these potential issues. There was no opposition to the request, and it was approved by the commission, 7-0.
The next zoning board meeting is scheduled for March 5 at 7 p.m.