Margaretville zoning issues are focus of May 19 meeting

By Julia Green
There will be an open meeting of the Margaretville Village Board at 6 p.m. on Monday, May 19 in the village clerk’s office to discuss changes in the village’s zoning laws.
Nicole Franzese of the Delaware County Planning Board will be on hand to explain and discuss what has been a contested, and at times, confusing issue for village residents. Also on hand will be the village’s attorney, David Merzig.
The issue of zoning gained attention when a change was proposed to the village’s zoning law that would make it possible for a new retail space to be built within the village. The process was brought to the forefront by a recent application for a permit to build on the property adjacent to the Margaretville Post Office. If approved, the space could become home to a Family Dollar chain store.
At a public hearing in March regarding the possible zoning change, the board revealed that it had conducted research into the issue that ultimately established that a zoning law passed in 1989 was never filed and never legally passed into law. A law to establish zoning that was passed in 1991 was contested by then-code enforcement officer Walt Heley, leading to a zoning law that was passed in 1992. That zoning law permitted use of retail space in existing buildings and required that retail use in new buildings be considered “special use” and, as such, require a special permit.
Changes made in 2001 were once again never filed, and as a result, the 1992 zoning law is still in effect, meaning that retail in new buildings is allowed with a special permit.
The March meeting concluded with the board asserting that it would be meeting with its attorney, and opting to withhold any decision or action pending that discussion.