Lincoln prepares for countywide planning, zoning

January 29, 2004|EMILY BURTON

STANFORD - With Tuesday's Lincoln Fiscal Court vote in favor of new planning and zoning, several major changes will be seen in the county during future construction. After March 1, new backyards will not coincide with junkyards, a new sewer system must have health department approval and developers will be hard-pressed to continue to fleece young buyers.

As outlined in the 83-page document, basic standards have been set to assure the development of Lincoln County will preserve its legacy for future generations, said county Judge-Executive Buckwheat Gilbert.

David Gambrel, property valuation administrator, said he was unsure how the new ordinance would affect property values or sales. In his experience, some potential home-owners said they would not build or buy property in Lincoln County because of the lack of planning and zoning, and some said they came to Lincoln for that reason.

Prices could also be affected, but Gambrel said so many different factors influence the selling price of property, it was difficult to accurately predict how P&Z alone would impact them.


"I can tell you that right now a zoned lot in Stanford is selling for more than one outside the city limits," said Gambrel.

Stanford and Crab Orchard have already adopted city-wide planning and zoning, pre-dating the new ordinances. County-wide zoning will give non-incorporated citizens the same rights, such as to defend their property against unwanted, industrial neighbors, said Rhonda Brown, County Administrative/Enforcement officer and certified building inspector.

If a property owner has a complaint about a building or business going in their back-yards, they now have specific laws to use in the protection of their property, said Brown. "Now they have a right to say what is built beside them." Other major regulations of the ordinances include basic sewer system requisites, roadside frontage requirements for residents and standards for mobile homes.

Under the ordinances, no building can be occupied without a water supply and sewage disposal system, which must be approved by the Lincoln County Health Department. If public water and sewer mains are accessible, the building must be connected to them. No subdivision plat will be approved without a certificate of approval of proposed water and sewer facilities.

Residential buildings must have 75 feet of public road frontage if using a private sewer system, 60 feet with a public sewer.

Mobile homes must be built after the Federal Mobile Home Construction and Safety act, after June 15, 1976, or must be upgraded to receive certification seal. Mobile home lots are restricted to a minimum of one acre in the county or can be placed on a smaller, permanent foundation in a mobile home park. Wheels and other mobile parts of the home must be removed and a skirt must enclose the bottom perimeter of the home.

Also, all private swimming pools must be covered or be enclosed by a gated, 4-foot fence to prevent children from falling in or swimming without permission.

Any structures or lots currently on record, but not in compliance, have been grandfathered into the ordinances, and will be considered compliant.

All planning and zoning ordinances are public record and can be obtained at the old Kentucky Utilities Building, county inspector and construction office or by calling (859) 365-4507.

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