Council upholds P&Z ruling on Day Care Center

The Winslow City Council upheld a planning and zoning commission decision on a controversial day care center in the Lee Street area during its Dec. 13 meeting, but changed some wording.

On Nov. 3, the commission approved a conditional use permit with a 4-2 vote in favor of the Smith's, who operate a day care center from their home on West Lee Street.

The permit included the following conditions: no children in the outside play area before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m.; no more than two-non resident employees are permitted; parking for non-resident employees shall be at their own homes or off-street at 221 West Lee Street; pickup/dropoff shall only be done at 221 West Lee Street so that access to adjoining properties are not negatively impacted, and late and early morning dropoffs/pickups shall dim lights and keep noise at a minimum; the owner may use the customary means of advertising the business except no signage shall be placed on the property; and the permit shall be reviewed annually to assess its effect on the neighborhood, and to insure compliance with all conditions and municipal code requirements.

The final stipulation, "Should there be complaints from the neighborhood and/or issues of non-compliance, the permit shall be revoked," was questioned by City Attorney Dale Patton.

He noted that the language could cause issues, as it was denying the Smith's due process if a complaint was filed.

Patton said that changing the wording to read reviewed rather than revoked would be acceptable.

The issue began when several residents from the neighborhood filed a complaint with the city.

Several council members said they also had a problem with the word revoked, but that reviewed would be fine with them.

The council voted unanimously to uphold the Planning and Zoning Commission ruling.

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