Item Coversheet
City of Independence
BILL NO. 19-014Ordinance Failed

Agenda Title:

19-014 - 2R. An ordinance amending the Zoning District Map as to a tract of ground located at 19301 E. Salisbury Road from District R-6 (Single-Family Residential) to District R-A (Residential-Agricultural) in Independence, Jackson County, Missouri.

Commissioner Preston made a motion to recommend approval of the application.  A second to the motion was made by Commissioner Ferguson.  The Independence Planning Commission voted as follows:


Commissioner Goldesberry



Commissioner McClain



Commissioner Ashbaugh



Commissioner Preston



Commissioner Wiley



Commissioner Read



Commissioner Ferguson







The motion failed to pass and such application is forwarded to the City Council for its consideration. Staff recommends this application not be approved.

Executive Summary:

The applicants, Stuart and Nita Dietz, own 19301 E. Salisbury Road, a 4.049-acre tract with a residence where they had engaged in a bee keeping operation without the proper zoning.  At the August 28, 2018 Planning Commission meeting, after hearing testimony from both the supporters and the opposition to the rezoning, the Commission had staff research how other cities address bee keeping in residential districts and propose an ordinance.  The proposed ordinance was considered by the Planning Commission on October 23, 2018 with the City Council approving on November 19, 2018.  At the October 23rd Planning Commission meeting, the applicant had requested a continuance of their rezoning to January 29, 2019 to allow the UDO amendment to be considered.


In December 2018, the applicants’ decided to proceed with the rezoning application so they can pasture animals (with electric or barbed wire fencing) and provide uncut wildflower fields for their animals and bee keeping operation.  Further, the applicants’ feel that an R-A zoning classification would be a benefit for the natural environment and local wildlife.


Staff believes the recently created ordinance (for which this case was the catalyst) addressed the applicant’s desire to continue a bee keeping operation that had not had the proper zoning in place.  According to comments made to staff by the applicant, the desire to move ahead with the rezoning request, rather than withdrawing the case, stems from a desire to avoid code enforcement actions concerning weeds generated from neighbors’ complaints.  Rezoning the property to R-A would permit the “pasture/wildflower” area to grow to a height greater than 12 inches when more than 25 feet in from the property line and would allow the applicant to have electric and barbed wire fences in close proximity to single family residences.


Staff believes, given the proximity to other single family residences, farm activities like barbed wire fencing, tall grass pastures and livestock do not belong in residential neighborhoods, and particularly across from an existing single family subdivision.


Current/Proposed Zoning - The R-6 zoning classification allows for single-family dwellings and various other uses (cemeteries, schools, government facilities and some agricultural activities).  While R-A zoning permits single-family uses and other civic and governmental uses as with the R-6 classification, it also permits the full array of agriculture activities.


Comprehensive Plan - The City’s new Comprehensive Plan, Imagine Independence, designates this site for Residential Neighborhoods.


Historic and Archeological Sites - There are no apparent historic issues with this property.


Review Criteria - Recommendations and decisions on rezoning applications must be based on consideration of all of the following criteria:


1.      Conformance of the requested zoning with the Comprehensive Plan – The new Imagine Independence plan envisions Residential Neighborhoods for this site; 

2.      Conformance of the requested zoning with any adopted neighborhood or sub-area plans in which the property is located or abuts There are no sub-area plans for this site;

3.      The compatibility of the proposed zoning with the zoning and use of nearby property, including any overlay zoning. – This would be the only R-A zoning along Salisbury Road.  The property south of Salisbury is developed as large lot residences that are zoned R-6 while the area north of Salisbury is developed as traditional single family residential;

4.      The compatibility of the proposed zoning and allowed uses with the character of the neighborhood – The property has been used under the current R-6 zoning since the house was built.  Rezoning only this lot would change the character of the area;

5.      The suitability of the subject property for the uses to which it has been restricted under the existing zoning regulations – This property is suitable for a residential use similar to other adjacent and nearby large lot residences;

6.      The length of time the subject property has remained vacant as zoned – The property has had a single-family residence for many years;

7.      The extent to which approving the rezoning will detrimentally affect nearby properties –If zoned to R-A, the proposed zoning not would be compatible with adjacent single-family residences;

8.      The gain, if any, to the public health, safety and welfare due to denial of the application, as compared to the hardship imposed upon the landowner, if any, as a result of denial of the application – If the rezoning is denied, the raising on livestock on the property would be limited and interior of grassy fields would need to be mowed.


Planning Commission Action:  At its January 29, 2019 Planning Commission meeting, the motion for approval failed to pass 0-5, after consideration of the following facts:

1.      That, the rezoning is not consistent with the review criteria listed in Section 14-701-02 of the City Code;

  1. That, a public hearing was held pursuant to a notice duly published according to law, at which time all interested parties were given the full opportunity to be heard;
  2. That, the R-6 zoning classification allows for single-family dwellings and various other uses (cemeteries, schools, government facilities and some agricultural activities);
  3. That, while R-A zoning permits single-family uses and other civic and governmental uses as with the R-6 classification, it also permits the full array of agriculture activities and allowances;
  4. That, R-A zoning would be incompatible with the adjoining residential uses and R-6 zonings;
  5. That, at the Planning Commission hearing, no one spoke in opposition to the rezoning application;
  6. That, at the hearing, no protest petition was submitted in opposition to the application.


Draft Planning Commission minutes are attached to this Council agenda item.

Department:          Community DevelopmentContact Person:          Tom Scannell

City Clerk DepartmentApproved

Council Action:          Council Action:          Accepted

ApplicationBackup Material
Letter from ApplicantBackup Material
Staff ReportBackup Material
Notification InfoBackup Material
Draft OrdinanceOrdinance
Draft PC MinutesBackup Material