Scottsdale City Council approves legal protest text amendment

In response to how legal protests are addressed when filed by neighboring property owners, Scottsdale City Council adopted an ordinance amending the text approving the zoning ordinance.

Approved upon consent at a Dec. 5 meeting, the zoning ordinance outlines rules and requirements for the application of a legal protest by property owners near a rezoning request, according to the council report.
Future legal protest filings are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

The text amendment aligns the city’s legal protest requirements with the state’s statutes, clarifying definitions and rules regarding zoning boundaries. The proposal also amends two related sections of the zoning ordinance regarding administration, procedures and division zoning districts.

Proposed changes to the legal protest rules and regulations within the zoning ordinance align the city’s requirements with the state statutes; increase the difficulty of property owners adjacent to a rezoning application to meet the criteria to file a valid legal protest of a proposed rezoning application.

The Planning Commission heard the case on Nov. 8 and recommended approval with a 7-0 vote, the report noted. This followed state changes to House Bill 2116 done on May 10 to include grammatical and other changes such as how legal protests are addressed and filed by property owners.

During the Nov. 8 public hearing, one person is said to have opposed the proposed text amendment citing concerns regarding the ability of property owners adjacent to a rezoning application to file a legal protest.
However, these are the important points specified:

  • Written legal protests must be filed with the city by 20 percent of property owners, according to the area and number located within 150 feet of all the boundaries of the proposed zoning district map amendment and area of the proposed change.
  • The area of the property that is subject of a proposed rezoning is included in the total area on which the 20 percent is calculated.
  • Public rights-of-way will be factored in the 150-foot measurement around the perimeter of the proposed zoning district map amendment, which was previously excluded.
  • Changes in which the three-quarters vote is calculated involves rounding to the nearest whole number.

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