(Posted July 17, 2019)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
Last month, the village of West Jefferson created its own building, zoning and planning department. This month, council approved a restructured building, zoning and planning fee schedule.
The new schedule is easier to read and more closely matches the fee systems set by the state and other nearby municipalities and counties, said Tom Hale, director.
The main change, he explained, is that building permit fees are now based on square footage, rather than a combination of square footage, building materials, and other factors.
In related action, council gave the mayor and public service director approval to enter into an agreement by which the city of London will pay West Jefferson $112,000 per year for building inspection services. London city council was scheduled to vote on the agreement at their July 18 meeting. (The meeting took place after the Madison Messenger’s press deadline; look for updates in the next edition.)
West Jefferson already has an agreement to provide building inspection services for the village of Plain City and, on July 16, the Madison County commissioners signed on to have West Jefferson perform the county’s residential building inspections at a cost of $55 per inspection to the county.
In other action, council held a first reading on legislation to add a new zoning district known as a planned unit development (PUD). PUDs allow for creative development designs and combinations of business and living environments that don’t fit into standard zoning districts. A public hearing will take place at council’s Aug. 5 meeting after which council plans to vote on the measure.
Council repealed and replaced a measure it passed on June 3 involving tax incentives for Hillwood, a Texas-based developer that plans to build an 844,000 square-foot distribution warehouse in the village’s commerce park. Hillwood no longer wants to enter into the TIF (tax increment financing) portion of the agreement. Instead, the village will execute the TIF itself.
Mayor Ray Martin administered the oath of office to new police officers Danni Hiles and Nathan Martin. Christopher Floyd, who will take office as West Jefferson’s new police chief on July 29, was on hand for the ceremony.