The Ely City Council voted four-to-one to waive the variance application fee and/or the legal advertisement and certified mailing fees in order to reconsider George Chachas’ variance application on his property located at 665 and 685 Stevens Ave. The variance centered on allowing Chachas to allow mobile homes on the properties. The variance was approved by the Planning Commission but denied by the City Council.
“I put this on the agenda not so much to waive the fees but to reconsider the variance,” Councilman Bruce Setterstrom said. “I felt when the variance was considered in the past, two years ago, it wasn’t fair…they denied it because he might put RV’s up. I don’t think you should deny somebody something because of something they might do.”
Councilman Marty Westland, who was on the council when the variance was first proposed, also agreed that the City Council should revisit the variance.
“I think we should be able to reconsider,” Westland said. “…I think to correct the mistake that was made, in my opinion, we have to cover the costs for the notice because it is not cheap to apply for a variance.”
Councilman Dale Derbidge voted against the item. Derbidge, who also served on the City Council when the variance was first brought up, said the City Council should not set a precedent of revisiting decisions by prior councils.
“If we set a precedent this way then everything else that was done on previous city councils, are we going to come back and waive the fees for that,” Derbidge said. “That’s a terrible precedent to set.”
City Attorney Richard Sears said in order to reconsider the variance, there must be a notice and people living in the area notified of the public hearing to consider the variance in the future.
The Ely City Council also voted on the following items:
• Approval to contract with Sterling Codifiers to make Ely City Codes available online.
• Approval of parcel map for the property located at 1501 East Aultman St. owned by Prospector Enterprises Ely, LLC.
• Tabling possible approval of unconventional setback requirements for residential lots less than 5,000 square feet.
• Approval of a proclamation declaring the week of Oct. 27 as Red Ribbon Campaign Week.
• Approval to allow all but eight of the remaining unused Ely Masonic Lodge No. 29 plots in the Ely City Cemetery to be sold back to the city.
• Approval to terminate the temporary easement granted to Mt. Wheeler Power across city property south of the Gianoli Substation.
• Approval of review of Cemetery Sexton’s job title, description and duties as outlined in Ely City Code 8-2-2.
• Approval of proposed organizational structure of City of Ely Cemetery and Parks personnel.
• Quashing possible approval to award bid for the Cemetery Visitors Center.
• Tabling possible approval of foster agreement to be used by the City of Ely Animal Control.
• Approval of review and amendment of billing practices for City of Ely utilities.
• Approval of review of City Building Inspector’s job descriptions and duties.
• Approval to hold one regular meeting on Nov. 14 and one regular meeting on Dec. 12 because of Thanksgiving and Christmas.
• Approval of an application for variance related to minimum setbacks at the rear of the property located at 230 Belfort Ave. to build a garage.
• Approval of second reading of Ordinance No. 663, Bill No. 2013-09, which sets forth collection procedures for past due landfill fees.
The next City Council meeting will be at 4 p.m. on Nov. 12. All City Council meetings are open to the public.