Council approves water rate adjustments

KINGMAN ­ City Council voted unanimously Monday night to adopt rate changes for water, wastewater and sanitation user fees and monthly charges.

Council approved the changes to be effective Sept. 1 by a 7-0 vote based on a recommendation by Red Oak consulting that shifts revenue recovery while reducing rate charges that will "encourage efficient use, conservation and equity," city Finance Director Coral Loyd said.

Loyd said that the adjustments "are essential to the long-term financial well being of the city," adding that low-volume consumers will likely see a decrease in their bills, while high-level consumers will see their charges go up.

No public comment was volunteered to address the proposed changes.

Council approved a preliminary plat request for a residential subdivision that initially raised concerns with city staff pertaining to grading allowances with less than 4,000 square feet on hillside lots.

The site for the proposed subdivision is 197.19 acres located north and south of Slaughterhouse Canyon Road, which is south of Downtown Kingman.

With the developer's proposal that architectural solutions could be implemented that would create minimal disturbance, the Planning and Zoning Commission approved the request by the condition that all lots must be designed to have an allowable grading area no less than 2,000 square feet.

After Mayor Monica Gates expressed concerns over setting a precedent of variances from the hillside ordinance, the developer, who identified himself as a civil engineer, made the case that his firm could design architectural solutions that would be consistent with the reduced area and would be subject to further review by city staff.

Planning Director Tom Duranceau informed council that this was possible, and council approved the request on a 6-0 vote, with Tom Carter abstaining.

Council denied a request from the developers of Country Club Canyon Estates to exceed lot disturbance permitted by the Hillside Development Ordinance for six hillside lots for a development northwest of Cerbat Hills Golf Course.

The disturbed area allowed by the ordinance ranges from 876 square feet to 3,467 square feet, and the amount requested ranges from 9,775 square feet to 14,300 square feet, according to background information.

Council voted 5-1 to deny the measure, Carter abstaining.

Council member Jim Baker voted against denying the measure, indicating frustration with how city staff made a recommendation regarding the hillside ordinance, but suggesting a maximum of 10,000 square feet of lot can be disturbed. "We need to strengthen our policies on how we come up with a number," he said.

Council voted 7-0 to approve the preliminary plat for a subdivision to be called Serena Grace Meadows located north of Interstate 40 and east of Eastern Street, but denied the applicant's request that the developer not be required to construct street improvements along Eastern Street.

Council voted 7-0 to table a request that was denied by the Planning and Zoning Commission for modification of the land-use map of General Plan 2020 for 4.73 acres between Eastern Street and Diamond Street on the north side of Kenwood Avenue. The modification would be changing 3-8 dwelling units per acre to 9-16 dwelling units per acre for a project that apparently involves the development of an apartment complex. City staff supported the request on grounds that increased density would be appropriate for the area, which is near the location of two future arterial streets, background information indicates.

Area resident Linda Jones said the change would "affect our property values and lifestyle." Vice-Mayor Tom Spear motioned to table the item until Aug. 15 when the developer would be present, noting that diagrams for the aforementioned apartment "looked excessive."

"I'd like to know how many units are involved," he said.

Council voted unanimously, with council member Dave French abstaining, to table another request denied by the P & Z, to rezone 1.5 acres along the south side of El Rancho Drive west of North Harvard Street to be split into three lots. City staff stood by a recommendation to allow the request, citing that the difference between one acre and half-acre lots in terms of traffic, housing type and lifestyle was minimal. City staff has indicated it has heard from a resident against the rezoning and one supporting it.

The rezoning would require some street paving provided by the applicant but would not allow horses on lots below 40,000 square feet, which concerned neighboring residents when presented to the P & Z.

Council approved 7-0 to propose a secondary property tax to voters to pay for bonded debt from the Airway Avenue Construction project, estimated to be $27.24 per $100,000 of an assessed home value.

Following the suggestion of council members Dave French and Phil Moon that executive session was not necessary to discuss the sale of two parcels in the industrial park, council authorized a 10-acre parcel and a half-acre parcel to be available for public auction on Aug.15.

Airport Authority Economic Development Director Bob Riley did not disclose the interested purchasers names but described the larger property as the location of a developer of diesel fuel made from vegetable oil.