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Plan Commissions - Another Way

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Subject: Plan Commissions - Another Way
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Date: Fri, 10 Jan 1997 22:05:24 -0600 (CST)
10 JAN - 2130 CST


I realise that most of us can't or won't do what I did -- serve on your
local Plan Commission.  I did a four year tour, two of them as chairman.

I had been a former member for several years when I applied for a zoning 
variance (side yard set-back) for my tower in a relatively hidden 
location on my property.  I had only one objector, a newly divorced 
woman, and since there was another location available that would not 
require a variance, my request was turned down and I built in my other 
(larger) side yard.

The irony in this is that my "standard" location was cheaper to use by
about $1000, and in full view of the neighborhood.  The objector, coming
home from work the day my contractor was finishing the surface of the
tower's concrete foundation 4x4x9, did a u-turn, and stormed into city 
hall to be told that everything was quite legal in that location.  She 
angrily threatened to sue and the city official told her that it (the 
city) would be on my side in the court.  Within a few months she sold 
her house and moved back to Indianapolis to be with her boyfriend.

What really paid off was that I knew the procedures and the terminology,
and most importantly, the city staff.  My original plan was to put the 
tower in my back yard which has a large underground utility easement.  
The city engineering department voluntarily spent a day doing an exact 
survey of everything within this easement with the idea of deeding part 
of it back to me.  This proved to be impractical - thus the side yard
variation, etc...

Public service, be it actual emergency (or charitable) communications (I 
have done both), or serving on a public board or commission is a VERY 
good investment.

73 - Dick Isely, WD9GIG

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