Warren County officials will be hosting a series of public meetings beginning this month to give residents an opportunity to view proposed changes to the zoning map.
The meetings are designed to allow residents to offer input on whether or not they agree with the proposed map.
The county zoning map has not been updated since 1994, according to Planning and Zoning Administrator Lynn Gluntz. She did note that rezonings requested by property owners and approved by the county since that time will not be affected.
The meetings will be attended by Gluntz and the commissioners, who are encouraging residents to attend.
“We need (the public’s) input,” Southern District Commissioner Hubie Kluesner said. “What we have done in the office is not set in stone. It’s just a general idea. We would like the public’s input. If they don’t agree what we have done, we will entertain their thoughts.”
The meetings that have been scheduled are as follow:
• Tuesday, May 22, Gore Case Community Club, Bridgeport Township.
• Thursday, May 24, Oak Grove Baptist Church, Bridgeport Township.
• Thursday, June 7, Central Grove Methodist Church, Camp Branch Township.
• Monday, June 18, Immanuels United Church of Christ, Holstein, Pinckney Township.
• Tuesday, June 26, Warrenton Fire Protection District Station 3, Pendleton, North Elkhorn.
All meetings will begin at 7 p.m.
Future meetings will be scheduled for each township in the county. County officials anticipate adopting an updated zoning map by November.
The process to update the zoning map has been ongoing for at least four to five years, but those efforts have accelerated in the past two years. The changes are necessary because of the county’s growth and in several instances the use of a property is different from when the zoning map was last adopted.
Warren County’s population grew by 33 percent in the past decade, the third-fastest rate in the state, according to the 2010 census figures released in early 2011. The county’s population increased from 24,525 in 2000 to 32,513 in 2010.
“This is an opportunity to change and keep what they got,” Northern District Commissioner Dan Hampson said. “We don’t want to force anybody into something they don’t want.”
The meetings will also give county residents a chance to learn of possible changes to the county zoning order.
“There also are some proposed changes of what is allowed where,” Gluntz said. “Right now, our definitions are very broad. We are tightening them and adding new definitions.”