New Republic code ordinance clarifies parking junk vehicles on biz property

The Republic City council passed an ordinance during their meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 5, amending city regulations regarding the storage of wrecked or inoperable vehicles awaiting repair on gravel or crushed stone surfaces at automotive repair businesses in the city’s commercial districts.
According to information provided during the meeting, the ordinance amended the regulations by prohibiting “the use of the required front yard for the storage of materials, equipment or tractor trailers on gravel or crushed stone in the general commercial (C-3) or less restrictive zoning zones.”
Garrett Tyson, community development director for Republic, said the ordinance actually expands the areas where an automotive business can store a vehicle in need of repair.
“The amendment expands the area that vehicles are allowed to be parked to include the side yards as well so long as the vehicles are parked behind a screen, like a fence or wall,” he said.
The ordinance also amended the existing ordinance to require the “screening of parking areas allowed” in the already existing part of the city code. Tyson said the screen can be a wall or fence which is at least six feet in height. He said while there was some concern that a property owner might incur some expense by having to screen an area where cars are being stored, he said that concern “has to be weighed against the concern that is presented by having wrecked/inoperable vehicles parked where they are easily visible and accessible.”
“Under most other circumstances, the presence of those vehicles would be considered to be a public nuisance,” he said. “Trying to balance the need to mitigate the potential nuisance while not imposing too much cost on property owners is a serious challenge. Thankfully, our community has business and property owners who care about the property they own and also care about their community, so I do not foresee a problem.”
Finally, the ordinance removed language regarding the front yards of storage areas from the definitions section of the existing city ordinance.
Tyson stressed that the new ordinance changes nothing; it only clarifies the existing ordinance.
“These regulations already existed,” he said. “The requirement for the screening is not new. This amendment was merely cleaning up some language and expanding the allowable area for this type of parking.”
Tyson also said the ordinance does not apply to residential property.

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Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712
www.lawrencecountyrecord.com

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