Litchfield Council Opts Not To Grant Special Permit

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A proposed auto glass repair shop in a residential area of Litchfield was put on hold on Thursday, Nov. 18, after the Litchfield City Council declined to issue a special use permit for the property.

Owners of the property located at 710 West Kirkham met with the planning commission to request the special use permit, but they questioned whether such a permit could be granted since the current ordinance prohibits commercial properties in areas zoned as residential. The commission also had denied a previous business a zoning change to commercial and were concerned about future plans for an auto repair business to go along with the glass repair shop.

After the motion to grant the permit died due to the lack of a second in the planning commission, the matter went to the council, who also opted not to act on the matter after discussion.

Alderman David Hollo said that the granting of the special use permit set a bad precedent and would make any residential property eligible for commercial use. Hollo also said that members of that neighborhood had spoke against the special use permit and wanted the property to be left residential or turned into a green space. Hollo said that the planning commission also expressed concern over the amount of clutter and the upkeep of the owners’ current business.

The council also approved the city’s insurance renewals, with Eric Braasch of Dimond Brothers on hand to discuss the renewals with the council. Braasch said that the premiums for property with Cincinnati Insurance were up about $5,000 over last year, but the city’s premiums from ICRMT went down about $3,000, mainly due to a decrease in workers compensation claims. Last year Litchfield paid 38 percent more than its peers in workers compensation claims, but that number had dropped by nine percent this year. Cyber liability coverage was also up some in the renewals, according to Braasch.

The council also approved two advertising contracts with Route 66 Scenic Byways Visitor Guide for $1,500 and with Terrain Magazine for $2,300 and approved an ordinance modifying the lake marshal duties and authority to give the lake superintendent authority to enforce codes and lake rules and regulations.

Also approved were repairs to a 2014 Ford Interceptor police car by Victory Lane Ford in the amount of $3,588.26, with the money coming from funds given to the police department by the Montgomery County Health Department for their help with COVID tracing, and a contract with ABDW Logistics for storage of rail cars on the Dean Meier Industrial Park rail spur.

The council would enter into closed session at 6:58 p.m. They will meet next on Thursday, Dec. 2, at Corwin Hall.

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