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Joint Work Session Revises Aquifer Protection Regulations

Ivy Engel

A joint work session on Monday, Feb. 10, between the Albany County Commissioners and the Planning and Zoning Commission resulted in changes to a few Aquifer Protection Overlay Zone regulations. 

The Laramie Boomerang reports that it will be easier than in the past for nonconforming uses - ones that don't comply with regulations but are grandfathered and allowed to remain on the zone - to lose their grandfather status.

Previous regulations allowed a nonconforming use, such as the Tumbleweed Gas Station, to cease operation for up to 24 months without losing its grandfathered status, but commissioners shortened the period to 12 months.

Commissioner Richardson also suggested a requirement for nonconforming uses to remain up to date on their licenses or risk losing grandfather status. Other commissioners supported the addition.

Additionally, the commissioners and planning board members added a reporting requirement to the regulations on damage to nonconforming uses.

Commissioners and planning board members didn't reach decisions on what the definition of expansion is, or who may petition for a piece of property to be included in the protection zone.

The work session resulted from public comment on proposed regulation changes in December. County Commissioners decided during their last meeting to take a closer look at the revisions in light of the comments.

A new draft of the amended regulations will be brought back to the commissioners in a few weeks for further discussion.

Have a question about this story? Contact the reporter, Ivy Engel, at iengel@uwyo.edu.

Ivy started as a science news intern in the summer of 2019 and has been hooked on broadcast ever since. Her internship was supported by the Wyoming EPSCoR Summer Science Journalism Internship program. In the spring of 2020, she virtually graduated from the University of Wyoming with a B.S. in biology with minors in journalism and business. When she’s not writing for WPR, she enjoys baking, reading, playing with her dog, and caring for her many plants.
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