Board of Adjustment - September 27, 2022 Minutes
The Regular Meeting of the Board of Adjustment of the City of Fargo, North Dakota, was held in the Commission Chambers at City Hall at 9:00 a.m., Tuesday, September 27, 2022.
The Members present or absent were as follows:
Present: Deb Wendel-Daub, Matthew Boreen, Jared Heller, Michael Love, Michael Orth
Chair Love called the meeting to order.
Chair Love noted that four members of the Board of Adjustment would be required to reverse the decision of the administrative official for Item 2a. The appellant was asked if they would like to proceed, and the appellant accepted to proceed with four members present of the Board.
Item 1: Approval of Minutes: Regular Meeting of July 26, 2022
Member Boreen moved the minutes of the July 26, 2022 Board of Adjustment meeting be approved. Second by Member Orth. All Members present voted aye and the motion was declared carried.
Item 2: New Business
a. Appeal of Administrative Decision
Appellant claims staff erred in its determination to deny the Change of Use Permit application from Gill Investments LTD, filed August 15, 2022 basing the determination that the proposed Use does not meet the Downtown Mixed Use Zoning Use Regulations as defined by the Land Development Code, Article 20-04 (20-0401 Use Table).
Planning Coordinator Kim Citrowske presented an overview on the background regarding staff’s decision to deny the applicant’s request. She explained the Relevant Code Provisions supporting staff’s decision, and referred to the section of the Land Development Code included in the packet. Ms. Citrowske stated the applicant feels staff erred in their decision and is bringing the appeal before the Board of Adjustment for a ruling.
Appellant and applicant representative Matt Hoffer, Romantix, Inc., spoke on behalf of the appeal.
Discussion was held on the difference between adult uses and retail sales and services, and the definition of adult bookstore.
Member Wendel-Daub present.
Ms. Citrowske and appellant Mr. Hoffart presented their presentations once more.
Discussion continued on the products to be sold, sidewalk visibility into the store, the definition of adult uses and stock and trade, and the Boards role in reviewing this appeal.
Planning and Development Director Nicole Crutchfield spoke on the 2019 zoning compliance letter for a different site and that interpretations are specific to sites.
Mr. Hoffer further spoke on the definition of adult bookstore and stock and trade.
City Attorney Nancy Morris spoke on the position of the City Attorney’s office.
Further discussion was held on the online description of the Romantix store, the intent of the store, and zoning enforcement.
Member Wendel-Daub moved to affirm staff’s decision to deny the Change of Use Permit application from Gill Investments LTD, filed August 15, 2022 basing the determination that the proposed Use does not meet the Downtown Mixed Use Zoning Use Regulations as defined by the Land Development Code, Article 20-04 (20-0401 Use Table). Second by Member Orth.
Discussion continued on what the authority is, and where it lies to define adult uses.
Ms. Crutchfield stated that adult uses are not allowed in the DMU, Downtown Mixed-Use zoning district and the planning departments review.
Member Heller further inquired on the definition of adult bookstore and the products that would define that use.
Upon call of the roll Members Wendel-Daub, Boreen, Orth, and Love voted aye. Member Heller voted nay. The motion was declared carried.
Item 3: Other Business
No other business was presented.
Item 4: Adjournment: Next Meeting: October 25, 2022
Member Orth moved to adjourn the meeting at 10:13 a.m. Second by Member Wendel- Daub. All Members present voted aye and the motion was declared carried.