I thought I should pass this along:
Citizens fighting back
To the Editor:
I am writing to voice my concern about the practice of spot zoning (or re-zoning) of property. My immediate concern is related to a 15- to 20-acre property situated along County Road 525 East near C.R. 200 S in Washington Township. A homeowner within the Wilderness Estates subdivision is working with a prospective buyer to have some or all of their property rezoned from residential/agricultural to general business.
This property is situated among property that is primarily residential. The property is in a flood plane and currently houses a large barn and two holes of golf. The proposed usage is for various festivities including wedding receptions, banquets, and corporate retreats. The adjoining and neighboring properties consist of five-plus acre residential properties in a peaceful wooded setting.
The creation of this party barn will significantly change the character of the existing neighborhood by generating significant increases in noise from amplified music, traffic, party revelers, corporate paintball wars, and other such activities. It also poses significant traffic safety concerns as C.R. 525 E has numerous blind curves, which are not conducive to the driving habits of late-night partygoers.
Many of us have teenagers that navigate these dark, narrow county roads on Friday and Saturday evenings, just when the parties will be breaking up. While the buyers indicate they won't have a liquor license or serve liquor, it is the belief of surrounding neighbors that it is unlikely that the attendees at these festivities will restrain from drinking (or other activities) that could inhibit their driving abilities.
While we understand there are some mitigation efforts that could be used to "lessen the impact," it is unconscionable that existing homeowners be subjected to any deleterious affects of a project that was not in the general plan when their homes were purchased, especially when this proposal is completely out of character with the surrounding area.
We have received a letter from a local appraiser indicating that this project could result in a 5 to 10 percent reduction in area property values.
Additionally, this proposal not only affects the area residents but also impacts the wildlife inhabiting the confines of this forested area. There are many deer, owls, woodpeckers, raccoons, possums and other local fauna that also call this area home.
The area residents have retained an attorney and formed a coalition that has been dubbed "Citizens Against Unchecked Spot Zoning" (CAUSZ). While we have banded together because of a threat within our backyard, we believe that, should this zoning amendment be approved, the precedent it sets poses a similar threat to all residents within Hendricks as well as all other Indiana counties.
We urge any homeowners that have found themselves in a similar situation, to write their county and state representatives to help put an end to the practice of spot re-zoning. We also request your presence at the Hendricks County Plan Commission meeting which is scheduled for Sept. 13 at 6:30 p.m. at the Hendricks County Government Center.
Should you wish to contribute to support our legal costs, you can send contributions to "Citizens Against Unchecked Spot Zoning," c/o Bob Alban, 1617 Ginseng Trail, Avon, IN 46123.
Thomas C. Dreher
At the meeting one of the Board Members, who also is on the Zoning Board, said the following to some of the residents who opposed: "you are free, white, 21 and have the right to object all you want BUT eventually the property will be re-zoned and you will lose." He's obviously voting for the illegal spot-zoning.
Why is he voting this way?
Because Rhonda Wagner once catered to his golf club and that he thought she was a nice person and he should return the favor.
The vote is to be held at 9:30am on the 27th. No public comment will be allowed at the vote.