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Wells wonders where to put recycling site

By Staff | Apr 3, 2016

Wells wants to know where their recycling should go.

And, the Wells City Council is diligently working on a plan to resolve that issue.

Milt Peterson was in attendance at the Wells City Council meeting last Monday evening to share his input on having the city’s official recycling site on his property.

City administrator Robin Leslie spoke to the council and mentioned that the Planning and Zoning Board of Wells recommended to the council to have Peterson’s request for a conditional use permit (CUP) approved.

The CUP is not for a new business, but to change Peterson’s existing CUP for his business which is considered non-conforming, at this point. With the Planning and Zoning Board’s approval, it moved on to the council.

But there were a few issues brought to the forefront at the council meeting. First was the concern of the property, itself.

The council wondered where there would be room for both recycling bins and moving traffic. As it is now, Peterson’s property is pretty packed.

“I just wonder how we will be able to get the traffic to enter and exit cleanly through the property,” said councilman John Herman.

City administrator Robin Leslie and the Planning and Zoning Board were prepared for those concerns and, after holding a public hearing, laid out five recommendations for Peterson in order for him to receive his updated CUP.

Those five recommendations were to:

Limit the hours of operation to general business hours Monday through Saturday.

Repair and maintain his existing fence in good order so the site is properly screened.

Remove the structure framework along the south wall within six months of approval.

Provide access to the drop site with clear turnaround areas. All customer and employee parking must be either on-street (if permitted) or on-site. The boulevard area must remain clear of parked vehicles and business-related items. Nothing is to be stored in the boulevard area.

Keep the proposed additional use (recycling drop site) area within the confines of the existing site.

In order for Peterson to keep his new CUP, he will need to meet the conditions set forth by the Planning and Zoning Board and the City Council. If not, then the permit may be revoked and Wells will have to start the search over for a recycling drop off site.

Peterson stated to the board he plans to have an auction in August that will free up some much needed space on the property for parking. He also says he will be tearing down a structure after the auction, as well.

But, that is still five months away, and the council is hoping their agreement with Peterson can be followed through.

“I’ve had it up to the brim with phone calls from people wondering about this situation,” said councilman Herman, to which Mayor Gaines also agreed.

With the slight change of wording to accepting temporary parking on the boulevard, the council approved the conditional use permit. Leslie informed the council that the recycling bins would be moved to the new site as soon as possible and are now at the new location on 355 Third Street SE in Wells.

The City Council also:

Heard that the new City Hall and Flame Theatre roof construction has already begun. Leslie mentioned that the City Hall roof would be getting new grading in hopes that water will run off the roof more efficiently and cause less water damage indoors.

Approved the advertising for a fire tanker truck owned by the city of Wells. Leslie reported the local fire department had the brakes go out in the vehicle and would rather sell the vehicle than try to maintain it.

Witnessed Mayor Gaines sign a mayoral proclamation for the month of April, which is National Child Abuse Awareness Month.

Wells’ next regular City Council meeting will be held on April 11 at 5 p.m.