Sunday, May 17, 2009

Planning Commission Discusses "Abandoned" Subdivisions

Potential problems with detention ponds, storm-water runoff and infrastructure maintenance at partially developed subdivisions -- or in the event a development goes completely bankrupt were discussed at the last Commission meeting. The Commission's attorney offered that a pre-construction bond (2yrs. for the developer) and then "restrictive covenants" (on property owners) usually address such issues; but the situation becomes problematic in the event of "bankruptcy proceedings" or "if nobody involved has any money." "It is what it is", he added. Commissioner (and Public Work's Director) Fidler said, "When the development's not done in 2 yrs., the maintenance falls on us" (stolen street signs, cracked sidewalks, sewers, etc.). "A 75% buildout before street takeover (by the City) would save us dollars", she added. A line of credit was described as preferable to the bond (now required) by the City attorney-- since collecting on defaults would be much simplified. "Its the result of overbuilding," he concluded. In her usual bottom-line manner, Commission Chairman Wilson surmised, "The horse is already out of the barn"; but asked Planner Johnathan Smith to take a further look at the matter.

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