Monday, August 18 – VERY IMPORTANT Code Writing Open House
Please stop by the Teton County Courthouse this Monday, August 18th any time from 9am-9pm to give feedback on the multiple land division options that Teton County is currently proposing for rural areas. These division options will be the backbone of the new rural county Land Use Code, which is supposed to be the implementation of our community’s award-winning Comprehensive Plan.
Why do these land divisions options even matter?
Teton County still has over 7,000 vacant platted lots from the last boom. Through the recent Comprehensive Plan process, the general community voiced a strong desire to address this oversupply of lots and not repeat past mistakes, but to learn from them…However, the proposed land division options have the potential to fast track the creation of hundreds or thousands more lots – with even less government oversight or review than what was allowed during the boom.
(Image above is current aerial view of “Drictor”)
The upside of the current proposal is an increased flexibility for all landowners. The Comp Plan does call for giving farms and ranches flexible land division options. However, it is VARD’s position that what’s been presented are broad loopholes that can fuel land speculation. What is needed, however, are options specially tailored for working lands.
How does this compare to the existing code?
These proposed land division options are designed more loosely than what is called out in the Comp Plan, or even in existing county ordinances. Currently, the county code has a one–time lot split provision and an agricultural land split provision. Now, those two processes are proposed to allow for multiple lots, and an additional short plat process has also been added. So, for example, if you owned 20 acres in 2.5 acre zoning, under the current ordinances you can do a single one-time lot split as long as your land has not been previously split since June 14, 1999. Under these new proposals, you could now create up to 7 new lots with minimal review. These new options are not limited to only agricultural lands either – any land is eligible as long as it has not been previously split since June 14, 1999.
And, as noted in our summer newsletter, the county is also proposing no changes to the underlying zoning densities – not even in problem areas like those noted in our newsletter. It is VARD’s position that revising the current zoning densities is clearly called for in the Comp Plan and must be proactively addressed in the new code.
August 18th is your first opportunity to comment on this critically important issue which will likely steer the future of rural growth in our community. So please stop by, ask questions, and share your thoughts at this open house which is being hosted by Teton County, the City of Victor, and the City of Driggs.