During Tuesday’s regular meeting, Gainesville City Council adopted an ordinance that amends current building codes and allows buildings to be moved into and within the city.
The new ordinance allows a structure to be moved into and inside city limits following a permit that has been issued by the city. Under the ordinance, an owner must provide basic information and base level insurance to get that permit. A building permit is also required before the structure is moved, and building plans for the engineered foundation must be submitted with the request for the building permit. Terms of the ordinance also define that the foundation must be approved by an engineer prior to the city issuing a certificate of occupancy — but the foundation does not have to be in place prior to the structure being moved.
The new ordinance requires the buildings to be moved at night between the hours of 7 p.m. and 7 a.m., in order to reduce issues with traffic, and the building mover must provide a front and rear escort complete with flashing light, flags and “wide load” signs.
Other meeting highlights:
Recognitions and appointments
• Gainesville Police Department Public Information Officer Belva McClinton was named the April 2013 “Employee of the Month.” City Manager Barry Sullivan read and presented the certificate to McClinton in recognition for her work with the upgrade of the department’s records management system, testing all aspects of the system and working with the system engineer to correct deficiencies, and assistance in training patrolmen and others on the update. Sullivan added that McClinton is appreciated for her positive attitude and how she is always on hand when needed.
• Council approved the addition of five names of Cooke County veterans to the granite monument at Leonard Park War Memorial and authorized sharing the cost with VFW Post 1922 as requested for engraving the names on the monument. The city’s portion of the cost is $375.
• Mayor Jim Goldsworthy read a proclamation declaring the week of April 7-13, 2013, as “National Public Safety Telecommunications Week” in Gainesville in honor of the men and women who work in public safety communications centers. Gainesville Police Department dispatch communications staff present to receive the proclamation included Capt. Mark Brazelton, Kim Heon, Sarah Payton, Bill Johnson, Heather Neighbors, Cynthia Walker, Janet Simpson and Raichelle Reed.
• Local historian Tom Carson of the Cooke County Historical Commission and members of the Hughes Tune VFW Post 1922 were recognized by proclamation of appreciation for their efforts in the research that resulted in the addition of the names of five veterans of Cooke County being added to the Leonard Park War Memorial monument. Receiving the proclamation were Tom Carson, VFW Post 1922 Commander Dennis Kretzschmar and Michael Allison.
• Council appointed Councilman Keith Clegg to represent the City of Gainesville on the Texoma Council of Governments Board of Directors and on the board of directors of Meals on Wheels of Texoma.
• Council approved Sullivan, Finance Director Dan Parker and Controller Karen Dixon as authorized signatories to TexPool/TexPool Prime accounts on behalf of the City of Gainesville.
Business and commercial
• Council authorized the Gainesville Main Street Program to sell alcohol between 5 p.m. and midnight in the 100 block of South Commerce Street during the 2013 Summer Sounds Concert Series on May 31, June 28, and July 26. In its fourth year, Summer Sounds Concerts include live music, concession type food and alcohol sales for the enjoyment of historic downtown Gainesville.
• Council approved first reading of an ordinance to rezone the properties identified as 1219, 1221, and 1223 South Clements Streets from the status of Restricted Commercial (C-1) to Single-family Two (SF-2). These properties are abutted to the north, south and west by Restricted Commercial (C1) and by Single-Family Two (SF-2) to the east. On March 19, the City of Gainesville Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously approved the zoning district change. Sullivan stated no legal issues with the zoning district change and reminded that when council adopted the current zoning district in 2008, the long term plan for this district was to allow commercial use. He said this re-zoning would change the idea for this entire block from moving toward commercial and away from residential. During the public hearing held prior to council discussion of the ordinance, property owner/applicant, Barney Gilbreath, spoke to council and requested they pass (adopt) the ordinance in one reading.
Gilbreath said he intends to sell these properties and requested the rezoning to allow for residential housing. Second reading of this proposed zoning district change will be held at the next regular meeting of the City Council on May 7.
• Council approved the first reading of an ordinance to rezone the property identified as 1427 Throckmorton St. from the status of General Commercial (C-2) to Multi-family Low Density (MF-1). This property is currently abutted on all sides by General Commercial (C2) Zoning. On March 19, the City of Gainesville Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously recommended for council approval of the re-zoning. Sullivan said the property is totally surrounded by commercial use and expressed a staff concern that the re-zoning could be viewed as spot zoning because of the limited size of the zoning change, and because it is in the middle of a general commercial zone. City Attorney Bill Harris expressed his opinion that it would not be spot zoning because the requested use is moving in the same direction of the current use. The Multi-Family Low Density (MF-1) Zoning classification was created to serve as a buffer between commercial uses and single family residential districts. Low-density zoning districts allow for two to four-unit buildings.
During the public hearing held prior to council’s first reading consideration of the ordinance, no one came forward to speak either for or against the ordinance.
The second reading of the proposed zoning district change will be held at the next regular meeting of the city council on May 7.