NEWS: General News

Possible Fee Changes to Planning Department

April 6th, 2016 | last Update: 3 years ago

By: Observer Staff

Planning Meeting of 4-5-2016

Some fees in the Planning Department could be changing in Washington County.
The Planning Department asked the board to consider three changes in Planning fees.

  • Consider charging a $20.00 fee for all Land Use Certificates, since each one takes a considerable amount of time and research to complete the applications. According to the Planning Secretary Brandi Lowery, there are several of these a day. These fees will go back into the Planning Dept. budget.
  • Changing the Small Scale Amendment (10 acres or less) fee to $250.00, which is a 50% reduction from original fees of $500.00
  • Changing the Large Scale Amendment (10 acres or more) fee to $1,000.00 from $1,500.00. A reduction of $500.00.
  • This would put Washington County more in line with surrounding counties and their fee schedule.

After much discussion from the Planning Board, 3 motions were made:

  • Not to change anything, leaving the fees exactly as they are. Was left with a 3 (no) -2 (yes)vote.
  • Accept the fee schedule as presented. Was a 3 (no) - 2(yes) vote.
  • Change the Land Use Fee Schedule only, leaving the rest of the fees the same. Was a 4 (yes) - 1(no).

This will be presented to the Board of County Commissioners workshop April 20, 2016.

The Planning commissioners also heard from a representative of the Seminole Plantation.
The inform review was to ask for a Partial Plat Vacate. This means land that is now subdivided into lots, to revert to acreage.
The property owned by Cogburn Reality is located northwest of Crystal Lake, and includes Lake Helen (Compass Lake). The land was planted in 1926 but Southern Plantation Company an is actually part of a larger proposed development. Cogburn Reality has owned the property for a long time and currently a person from Panama City were looking at it for private recreational purposes.
Commissioners were told Crystal Lake Dr, Amos Hayes Trail and Fawn Ridge Dr would be unaffected, and this would not deny any access to the adjacent property owners.

The board requested in a 5-0 vote that a "specific purpose survey" be done to protect the county. This would verify any county roads or right-of-ways, saving the county any issues that could occur from the original plat.
The board also requested in a 5-0 vote that at least one road not be vacated to allow public access to the lake. The representative stated he would relay that to his clients, but that it was his understanding they wanted the land to be private.

For any questions or concerns contact the Planning Dept at (8500)415-5093

Other items on the Agenda were:

The member-at-large position had been advertised with 2 applicants being submitted to the Board of County Commissioners at the April 20th workshop. Voted on April 21 at the Board Meeting.

The Commercial Intent Overlays for Hwy 77 and SR 70 (Douglas Ferry Rd) were submitted to the State of Florida.

FLUM ammedments were approved by the Commissioner.

Next Planning meeting will be May 5th at 5:00 P.M. at the County Annex.



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