Friday, September 16, 2016
Del. Greg Habeeb of Salem today has submitted HB 1406 that is contingent on HJ 542, the passage of amendments to the Virginia Constitution by November 2018. Both to be taken up in the 2017 General Assembly session in January.
The hitch is that HB 1406 the automatic right to own a firearm goes into effect automatically when the Constitutional Amendment Article II, Section 1 is approved by voters.
The amendment to the Constitution provides for the automatic restoration of the civil rights of a person who has been convicted of any non-violent felony after they have completed their sentence, including all supervised or unsupervised probation, and paid all fines, fees, court costs, and restitutio
At Monday’s Roanoke City Council meeting an ordinance passed 6-0 that will allow a reduction in side and front yard setbacks. Bill Bestpitch was absent. The change will permit a structure to be three feet from the side or back property line.
According to Planning Administrator Chris Chittum it will help homeowners replace garage foundations that are already closer then the five feet allowed to a property line. Homes on narrow lots had a difficult time with additions under the existing limitations of five feet. Garages can line up better with existing driveways.
Council’ questioning went to parking locations for recreational vehicles (RVs). The zoning had not changed for them said Chittum. They cannot be parked in front yards or on a corner lot side yard. They cannot be parked in the street for more than ten days in a three-month period. “Code enforcement does not monitor RV parking … it is complaint-driven,” said Chittum.
Unattached accessory building additions will be based on the footprint of the house. The maximum increased from 40 percent of a home’s footprint to 75 percent of a home’s footprint. The cumulative percentage of multiple accessory buildings can be no more than 100 percent of the footprint.
Front yard fences will be permitted at a height of 42 inches – an increase from the 36 inches. The changes are effective immediately.
Workshops will require a special exception permit. The workshops will be subject to a public hearing giving neighbors a chance to weigh in on any perceived nuisance.
Small-scale residential wind turbines will also require a special exception permit. Residential wind turbines can be no higher than 20 feet above roof height and the blade width no wider than 4 ½ feet.
In agricultural or commercial districts free standing wind turbines would be limited to 120 feet in height or 60 feet above a rooftop. The blade can be no wider than 30 feet.
There have been no requests for wind turbines within the city limits of Roanoke but as prices come down the city needs to be prepared explained Chittum.
Posted By Valerie Garner
Categories: Community, Politics, Roanoke City Politics
Tags: city_council, environment, neighborhood, study