YORK COUNTY – After earlier postponing a decision on a conditional special zoning permit, for a second house to be built on a quarter-quarter, the York County Commissioners decided this week to allow Eric Montgomery to build a guest house on his property in rural York County.
The matter went to the planning commission earlier, as the county’s zoning regulations say the number of houses in the rural portion of the county has to be limited to one per quarter-quarter in order to preserve the amount of productive ag land. However, conditional permits can be granted.
A hearing was held a month ago, but the commissioners delayed a decision because Montgomery could not be present.
This week, they met with him in person, to discuss his proposed project.
Montgomery explained how the house, which would be located on a portion of his 20-acre property, would have its own well, electricity source, driveway and sewer. The property is at 1717 Road 12.
“We are planning to build a guest house, for missionaries to stay there, as well as family members,” Montgomery said. “I asked for this as a conditional special zoning permit but I could plat it differently if needed. I can do what you need me to do.”
“Just for the record, I did receive a call (from a county resident) to deny this because they said the rules are in place for a reason. I just needed to say I received that call,” said Commissioner Daniel Grotz.
Commissioner Chairman Randy Obermier also noted one person spoke in favor of this special allowance during the earlier public hearing.
Nate Heinz, zoning administrator for the county, said the planning commission was recommending approval without any special conditions.
Montgomery also noted the property where the new house would go is currently pastureland and is not in production agriculture.
“It is still a second house and to make this clean because we won’t always be on this board and you won’t always own that property, I think it should be a separate property on a couple of acres,” Obermier said. “I think it should be platted to be stand-alone and I’d like to see that as a condition.”
“Whether it is split off or not, I have no opinion on that either way,” Grotz said.
“It would be 4-5 acres if it was set aside as a separate property,” Montgomery said, noting it would then be two separate parcels.
“If it’s split, then it would be easier, in the future, to turn into a permanent residence, but I don’t know if I care either way,” Grotz added.
“It’s still a permanent structure, I’m just thinking about the future,” Obermier said.
The commissioners voted in favor of allowing the second house per quarter-quarter, with the condition it has to be set aside on at least two acres and plotted as a separate parcel.