The city of Chillicothe is hosting a forum Monday evening regarding commercial parking lot codes.  Click to hear KMZU’s Kristie Cross talk to Assistant Code Enforcer Tammi Venneman:

Tammi Venneman

“Our department, planning and zoning, is only looking for clarification on this ordinance,”said Venneman,”We would like to see where the start date should have began on the dustless parking lots.  We see the ordinance was written in 2000 and was adopted then, so we believe that is when it should have started.  The question is where do you draw the line.  Is there a line drawn between nonprofit or public use?  We’re not sure.”

Based on this discussion, the Planning and Zoning Board may make recommendations of change to the current ordinance.  Those changes would go before council in October.  Monday’s meeting will get underway at 7:00 p.m. in council chambers.

Press Release: 

The City would like to announce that a forum for the discussion of the Commercial Parking lot codes will be on 6 August at 7:00 p.m., at the City Hall Council Chambers.  The Chillicothe Planning and Zoning Board will discuss the current code and if any changes are necessary.  The general public and business owners are encouraged to attend to provide their opinions.

Currently, the Planning and Zoning Board will have the initial discussion on 6 August, and then based upon the outcome, they will make recommendations for changes or the recommendation it remains unchanged.  If changes are suggested, then at the next meeting in September, they will review the draft of the code with the changes.  These recommended changes would then go before the City Council in October for discussion and public input.  After this review, the Council would cote in the recommendations for changes or vote to amend or no change at all.

This process of review and discussion on any changes that impact the cost of running a business in Chillicothe is very important to the City Council.  Several Council members have stated that anytime, we can reduce bureaucracy or costs to the local business owners, let’s do it immediately.

“The Council has stated that they are not looking at changing codes that increase costs, nor are they attempting to make business owners currently operating, change their parking surfaces, that is ridiculous,”state Chillicothe City Administrator Ike Holland.

The purpose of the discussion of the Commercial Parking Lot code is to review the current code.  The current code is incomplete, and vague.  The current code does not address all the types of zoning, such as those zoned as “Public”.  The council would like to discuss making the code that is comprehensive, up to date, fits the desires of the community and that is business friendly.

Currently the City Planning and Zoning code (Article XXIV, Parking and Loading Regulations) requires numerous dimensions and parking space requirements, call Codes at 646-5636 for a copy.  But, the City wants us to note, that the current standard calls for “dustless” parking lots for commercial parking means that new businesses should either have asphalt or cement as their surface in the parking lot.  This “dustless” regulation has created the most interest in local businesses and it will be a highlight for the discussion.  It needs to be expounded upon and all concerns about costs, effectiveness and desires of the community voiced.  The Council and the Planning and Zoning boards will discuss removing this requirement and other parts of the code.

Lastly, send letters and e-mails (dvan@chillicothecity.org) to the codes department, they will forward them to the Council and Plannind and Zoning Board for their review.