Ornduff says Urban Growth Plan was good

By Bob Robinson
Star Staff
brobinson@starhq.com

   David Ornduff, director of planning and development for the City of Elizabethton, told members of the Elizabethton Planning Commission last night that the Urban Growth Plan "was good, solid planning for the future."
   The Urban Growth Boundary is a region containing the corporate limits of a municipality and the adjoining territory where growth is expected to occur over the next 20 years.
   The city has asked the Tennessee Local Government Planning Advisory Committee (LGPAC) to designate it as the Regional Planning Commission for the Urban Growth Boundary in order to meet Public Chapter 1101 provisions.
   However, Carter County Executive Truman Clark has written Donald G. Waller of the Local Planning Assistance Office in Nashville "to contest the adoption of expansion to the regional planning commission by the city of Elizabethton."
   Elizabethton Mayor Sam LaPorte has also written Waller to request time on the agenda for the city to present its case at the next LGPAC meeting in April.
   The Urban Growth Boundary is an area containing the corporate limits of a municipality and the adjoining territory where growth is expected to occur over the next 20 years.
   The City of Elizabethton encompasses nine square miles while Carter County encompasses 348 square miles.
   The Urban Growth Boundary consists of 8,470 acres, of which 4,045 acres has been developed. Of the 4,425 acres which are vacant, 2,490 acres could be developed in the future, Ornduff said.
   Ornduff said the City of Elizabethton has worked with the City of Watauga, the City of Johnson City and Carter County government to develop the Urban Growth Plan.
   Stan Harrison, director of the Local Planning Assistance Office in Johnson City, said "the regional planning commission of jurisdiction would review zoning plans in the county but zoning powers would remain with the Carter County Commission."
   Michael Hughes of the Local Planning Assistance Office said the City of Elizabethton had been very responsible with its planned infrastructure development in the past.
   Ornduff told the commission that the Urban Growth Boundary Plan will not adversely affect county property tax revenues, county zoning, county code enforcement or county sales tax revenue.
   "Although the city and county have similar subdivision regulations, the county is not knowledgeable of the city's complete infrastructure development. Each has its own governmental direction," Ornduff said.
   In other action, commissioners approved requests by:
   * Ian and Leslie Bradley for preliminary and final plat approval for property located at 555 Division Street; and,
   * Dean and Betty Vines for preliminary and final plat approval for property located at 609 North Roan Street.
   Commissioners also set noon, Monday, March 18, for a Zoning Board of Appeals meeting to consider a building variance request by Victor Oliver who plans to build a NAPPA retail business.