By Roger Lanse

The Silver City Town Council was presented with a proposed ordinance at its Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2020 regular meeting. The ordinance would approve a request for a zone change from Residential A to Residential B-2 for nine lots in San Vicente blocks 15 and 16, including addresses 107, 109, 111, and 113 on Dorothy Street. The other parcels are not addressed. Each of the lots were listed as equal in size -- .115 acres. The applicant was Ed Garland who was not present, but was represented by Bill Miller.

Originally, Garland planned to develop the lots as a tiny home community, according to Priscilla Arredondo of the town's Community Development Department, but after questions by District 2 Councilor Lynda Aiman-Smith and District 1 Councilor Cynthia Bettison, Arredondo and Miller stated that Garland had changed the plan to include homes double the size of a tiny home, the maximum of which is accepted as 400 square feet. Arredondo said the zoning change was recommended by the Planning and Zoning Commission and the CDD, noting that Garland had stated it was not his intent to start a trailer park or a community of manufactured housing, but that he had a misunderstanding about the town's size requirement for tiny homes.

Garland had originally purchased four parcels, according to Arredondo, recently purchased five more, and was requesting the zoning change so he could continue with his development to include single-section manufactured homes.

Again, to a question by Bettison, Arredondo stated Garland requested the zone change so he could place on his recently acquired parcels structures which are not currently allowed under Residential A.

Answering a question by District 4 Councilor Guadalupe Cano, Arredondo stated some residents expressed opposition to the proposed zone change at an earlier P&Z meeting, and to the CDD but after CDD's deadline for public comment.

In answer to another question by Bettison, both Miller and Town Manager Alex Brown stated at the meeting, and Brown on Thursday, Nov. 12, there were no plans in connection with this project to extend Dorothy Street to either Highway 90 or Highway 180.

By a mixed vote, council rejected Garland's request for zoning change 3-1, Aiman-Smith voting 'aye.'

Council went into executive (closed) session to discuss the town manager's contract, which contract was approved.

District 3 Councilor Jose Ray Jr. stated that Wednesday, Nov. 11, at 5 p.m. luminarias will be set out at Sixth Street School in honor of Veterans' Day. He also stated that he had heard complaints about bike riders on the Boston Hill trails, but he had seen very few. Ray also said, "There is way too much hatred in America. Let it go."

Bettison and Aiman-Smith complimented the county's election officials and volunteers for doing a great job on Nov. 3 and encouraged residents to practice COVID 19 safety.

Council approved a resolution amending the fiscal year 2021 budget. Brown stated this was necessary as a Business Retention Grant to assist small businesses and a Local Government Grant to help with COVID 19 related costs had not been received when the budget was adopted, but came in after.