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By Dan Rudy 

Planning and Zoning plots and replats

 


At their monthly meeting Aug. 14, Planning and Zoning commissioners chose to recommend to the Wrangell Borough Assembly the disposal and eventual subdivision of lot 6A. The nearly 8,000 square-foot lot is an undeveloped city property on Case Avenue.

The commission considered a letter from Dan Nore and Twyla Nore regarding the purchase of lot 6A. If able, the Nores wanted the lot split lengthwise to give them better access to control drainage being diverted onto their property from Zimovia Highway.

“I think Mr. Ashton has to correct the drainage issue he has caused to the Nores,” commented commission chair Terri Henson.

In its report the city said Brian Ashton’s rock wall had encroached on the 6A property, and suggested that the lot has become “not ... very buildable” by a third party as a result of both the wall and easement.

The commission recommended that the lot’s future disposal be discussed with the adjacent property owners at greater depth beforehand.

“There are numerous options,” said Carol Rushmore, Wrangell’s economic development director. “How it’s subdivided is another issue altogether.”

Planning and Zoning also recommended to the Assembly the nullification of Ward replat (#2008-3), as requested by the Alaska Mental Health Trust.

Bruce Ward had been incorrectly listed as the owner of lot 14 USS 3403, rather than the Trust. He had been contracted by the Trust in 2008 only to purchase the adjacent property but has since stopped paying for the land. The error was discovered when the trust prepared to reclaim its property.

“Now the title to the property is clouded because of this plat,” Rushmore explained.

In order to clear the title and resell its parcel, the Alaska Mental Health Trust requested that the borough nullify, void and vacate the replat. City and borough staff consulted with the attorney regarding the proper process to follow for this never-before dealt with situation.

Commissioners asked whether there would be an obligation on the part of the city to reimburse taxes paid on the property.

“It worries me that the city might have to pay back-taxes on that,” said commissioner Don McConachie.

Rushmore explained that Ward still would have had to pay those property taxes in any case, so that would not be necessary.

In another item, Rushmore also apprised the commission on a plan for a non-motorized trail design being developed. Borough staff attended a trail design class in conjunction with Sitka and Juneau officials, discussing options for their intended trails.

“We’re just trying to identify what we may be able to do,” said Rushmore.

“We’d like it to be a safe trail to school,” and the park, she said. The trail segment leading to the hospital would be recreational in nature.

She recommended that a public meeting be held to discuss other issues, priorities and alternative sitings. All-terrain vehicle drivers and some residents have already voiced concerns over the siting and potential usage of the trail system.

Planning and Zoning also approved a conditional use permit application for Talea Kellar to operate a day-care business from a rural residence. Kellar is currently acquiring a license from the state to supervise up to eight children. The home has also been inspected and approved by the fire marshal, she said.

 

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