Newly modified Planning Commission conducts reorganization
Commission, Board of Zoning Appeals appoint their officers Aug. 23
The Arkansas City Planning Commission held its annual reorganization meeting Aug. 23 in the commission room at City Hall, 118 W. Central Ave.
The meeting was a little more complicated than normal, thanks to the recent decision of the City Commission of Arkansas City to combine the Planning Commission and the Board of Zoning Appeals.
Prior to the meeting, newly appointed Planning Commissioners Mary Benton and Carl Mills, who previously served on the zoning board, were sworn in with the oath of office by City Clerk Lesley Shook.
The commission meeting started with the introduction of the new members by City Planner Josh White, who also recounted the commission’s last year of actions for the benefit of the new members.
Benton then made and Commissioner Albert Brown seconded a motion to reappoint Dr. Scott Rogers as Planning Commission chair, while Commissioner Mike Munson moved and Commissioner Brian Wells seconded to appoint Commissioner Andrew Paton as vice chair. Both motions passed 9-0.
Then Commissioner Gordon Fry made a motion, which Commissioner Charles Jennings seconded, to recess the Planning Commission and convene the Board of Zoning Appeals. It was approved 9-0.
Munson and Wells, who do not live within the City limits and thus are excluded from participation in the Board of Zoning Appeals, stepped down from the commission dais and briefly left the room.
As he did before, White recapped the board’s recent actions for the four newest members.
Jennings moved and Paton seconded to maintain the status quo concerning the board’s officers, retaining Benton as chair and Jennings as vice chair. This motion was approved 7-0.
Jennings then made a motion, seconded by Mills and approved 7-0, to adjourn the Board of Zoning Appeals sine die and reconvene the Planning Commission.
Munson and Wells returned to their seats.
Public Information Officer Andrew Lawson provided an update on open meetings and records laws.
After a brief presentation by White concerning possible changes to the Zoning Regulations, regarding telecommunications towers, political signs and fences, the commissioners voted 9-0 to schedule a public hearing at their next meeting.
Only the telecommunications rules in Article 23 will be part of the hearing.
In other business, the commissioners decided to maintain their regular meeting time of 5:30 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month, if there is business to be discussed, and voted 9-0 to recommend that the City Commission reappoint Fry to a new three-year term on the Historic Preservation Board.
The meeting began at 5:30 p.m. and was adjourned at 6:24 p.m.