• Bob Vlach, Woodford Sun Staff

BOA denies permit for in-home office

The Board of Adjustment denied a conditional-use permit that would have allowed a resident of Elm Street to open a chiropractic office in her home. Neighbors of Brandi Jones had voiced their opposition to her request during a public hearing that began on Monday, June 5, and continued on Monday, July 10. By a vote of three to two, the Board of Adjustment (BOA) denied the permit on a motion by David Prewitt. His motion to deny the request was "based upon the traffic impact of the number of egresses in and out" of the proposed chiropractic office. An Elm Street resident, John Miller, who identified himself as a licensed engineer with over 25 years of experience, said there are sight distance issues on Elm Street at the Old Hickory Lane intersection, and allowing an in-home business at 153 Elm Street may add another 21 entrances and exits per day on this stretch of roadway. BOA Chair Tim Turney, Fred Powers and Prewitt, who voted to deny the conditional-use permit, opposed Frank Stark's motion to approve the request, which failed by a three to two vote. Al Schooler supported the motion to approve the permit, with an added condition that there will be "gaps" between scheduling of appointments, but Stark declined to specify how much time would be required between patients. In closing statements before the public hearing was closed on Monday, an attorney representing a neighbor who opposed the conditional-use permit, reiterated his client's concern that allowing a business in a residential neighborhood was inappropriate. William Moore also provided the BOA with minutes from a hearing on a previous request for a bed and breakfast that was denied by the BOA. In that case, he said neighbors also did not want a commercial business to intrude on the integrity of their residential neighborhood. Jones said the hearing on her request should have never been continued. "Our case was pretty much made last time," she said. An attorney representing Jones during the hearing in June reminded BOA members that her request meets all of the criteria in the ordinance, which allows a home occupation as a conditional use in the R-1A residential district. "Your ordinance allows a (home occupation) use ... in this neighborhood," said attorney Randy Strobo. "...And it satisfies every provision of the home occupancy definition." Moore presented a petition last month with the names of "nearly every neighbor" opposed to this request for a home occupation in an Elm Street residence. "They've done there darnedest to keep it a residential neighborhood and that's why they're here tonight," Moore said in June. Variance approved The BOA unanimously approved a 35-foot rear-yard setback that will allow BMAT Investments, LLC, to move forward with plans to rebuild a home on a legal nonconforming lot of record at 117 Ashmore Avenue, R-2 (residential) district.

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