Ashland Betterment Coalition Meeting Sep. 11th:
• ABC is looking into applying for a “façade grant” to assist local commercial businesses with beautifying their visual appeal.
• Reindeer & Santa event planned for the second weekend of December.
Planning and Zoning Meeting Sept. 12th:
• The commission held a workshop concerning the city’s land use development code.
• Commissioner Bryan expressed concerns about the city’s recent discussions of updating and amending the future land use map. Bryan questioned the appropriateness of amending the future land use map when it is only supposed to be updated every ten years and was just updated in 2020. Bryan questioned whether having a new city administration justifies changing the future land use map and said that the map needs to remain true to what the community wanted when it was last reviewed.
• Commissioner Bergthold then stated that the future land use map is more of a guideline but not a gospel, and that the property owners should get to do what they want with their land.
• The monthly community development report states that Yummy Yo’s is in the final stages, and that Ranken has finished the inside and outside of the building and has been granted temporary occupancy.
Chamber of Commerce Meeting Sep. 14th:
• The Chamber is planning ribbon-cutting ceremonies for new Chamber businesses, such as Mary Jane’s Place.
• City Administrator Kyle Michel reported that the Perry Avenue Extension Project is moving forward, as it has acquired all the necessary approvals and permits.
• Laurie DiPietro of Top Quality Motors/TirePros stated that a few Chamber business members she spoke to recently were not pleased with the Chamber’s support of the business tax increase, claiming that the tax increase will drive more people to shop in Columbia and Jeff City. The Chamber responded by thanking Mrs. DiPietro for bringing the issue to their attention and brainstormed ways to support our local businesses more strongly.
Board of Alderman Meeting Sep. 19th:
• The board approved Council Bill No. 2023-032, an ordinance approving the final plat for Forest Park Plat 2-A.
• The board approved Council Bill No. 1454, an ordinance approving Forest Park Plat No. 3 preliminary plat.
•Public works report:
o S Main St Waterline/Street Resurfacing Project- All water line work is complete. Crews are currently working on sewer line and storm water items. Upon completion of such, pavement resurfacing will begin.
o Perry Ave Extension Project- Storm Water Protection Plan has been approved and a Notice to Proceed can now be issued, project deadline should be extended to 12/31/2023.
Board of Adjustment Meeting Sep. 21st:
• A variance request from 9.365.3 of the City Code (All parking and loading area surfaces including parking and loading area access aisle, driveways, exits and entrances shall be constructed of permanent, non-permeable concrete or asphaltic concrete) made by Jeremy Lindsey for 507 E. Broadway was reviewed by the board. A representative for Mr. Lindsey argued that the lot is up for sale and requiring them to pave it would cause financial hardship. The representative also said that there are several lots around town that are not in compliance with the city code and questioned why Mr. Lindsey’s lot is being focused on. Board member Gene Rhorer stated that he wants to be supportive of small business and would be willing to grant a variance that ends on the day that the lot sells. Board member Richard Sullivan said that Mr. Lindsey has acted disrespectfully towards the city by laying gravel even after the city had communicated to him that would be a violation of the city code. The Variance Request made by Jeremy Lindsey for 507 E. Broadway was not approved by the board.
• A variance request from 9.551 of the city code (Freestanding or Projecting Signs in Development Complexes: On each public street frontage, each development complex shall be permitted one (1) freestanding development complex sign or one projecting complex sign, but not both. Only one freestanding sign is allowed per parcel except as provided for in development complexes) submitted by Ashland Rentals, LLC for 101 Red Tail Drive for an additional Freestanding sign was approved.