The Cumberland County Planning Commission decided to recommend a zoning change for the Township of Middlesex to promote the sale of the Claremont Nursing Rehabilitation Center, but the county closes the sale of the committee members.
According to comments from the county commission, the issue could be heard and voted on at the Middlesex Township Supervisors Meeting on July 7, said Mark Carpenter, township zoning officer.
County officials withdrew from the usual analysis of the proposal during discussion by the planning committee on Thursday. Because the county is an entity that requires new zoning, county officials “speak out about potential conflicts of interest,” President James Ross said.
The county plans to sell Clairemont, a county-owned nursing home, to Allaire Health Services, the remaining bidders in the county’s search process, which began late last year.
Land use issues
The sale of Claremont presents a land use issue, as well as a debate over whether the sale of a nursing home is best for the humanitarian and economic interests of the county.
Claremont is located in a large 98-acre plot that needs to be subdivided to sell the nursing home portion, as well as the county jails, dilapidated offices, recycling centers, and other facilities.
Use of existing land on the plots, including Claremont, is not expressly authorized by the Middle Sex Township Zoning Ordinance.
The plot is located in the “Residential farm” district and “Public buildings and government agencies” are only authorized with exceptional authorizations. According to the county memo on this subject, there is no provision allowing an institution like Claremont to be a private institution, even with special exceptions.
To address this, the county is proposing to create a new zoning classification for mid-sex townships. This is called the “institutional district” and its use is permitted by default in long-term care facilities and similar scales. The main county parcels, as well as some suburban parcels along Army Heritage Drive, have been proposed for reclassification in this new zoning.
County councilor on the proposal, Ron Lucas, said the zoning review was facilitated by discussions over the sale of Claremont, a change that identifies the area as institutional use for townships and future use plans county land. Said it was consistent with.
“It was included in the overall zoning plan, but it was not included in the zoning ordinance,” Lucas said of codifying an institutional domain. Carpenter agreed the new area would be an appropriate renewal of the township’s zoning ordinance whether or not the county sold Claremont.
Planning Commissioner Ed Franco asked if the county is looking for full rezoning to select its lands and apply the new zoning district to all suitable parcels.
However, Carpenter said the current proposal is demand driven. Even if in the long term “appropriate planning makes sense” for the institutional zone to be applied in a comprehensive manner.
“There is a specific demand from the county, and that’s what we’re dealing with,” Carpenter said.
Planning and use
Franco also asked why the county’s plans were to subdivide only Claremont and not divide the remaining large plots in a way that would make potential future uses clearer.
“I’ve heard that convenience is difficult… So I think you’re trying to narrow down your proposal in a very specific way, but in my opinion the county needs to demonstrate proper planning and use.” Franco said.
“I’m not sure if the county wants to make an effort to plan for future uses of real estate, including determining the size of land for prisons and other key factors,” Lucas said.
The new zoning classification will affect the county’s ability to do so. The minimum lot area for the proposed institutional zone is 40,000 square feet, or less than 1 acre, while the current residential agricultural zone is 5 acres for non-residential use.
Planning Commissioner Brenda Landis also said the county’s comprehensive plan defines “Institutional Character Areas” which include the Claremont Road and Army Heritage Drive facilities as “over 25 acres”.
The county campus is now much larger overall, but the clear purpose of the new zoning is to allow the county to subdivide smaller plots and sell them to private owners.
“Due to the current problem, more land can be sold,” Landis said.
According to County Subdivision Engineer Chris Derringer, the Claremont parcel would have an area of 13.7 acres if subdivided for sale.
The idea of selling Claremont has been problematic for months, and two county Republicans, Gary Ichelberger and Vince Diffilipo, must now subsidize the county. Given his stance, with common taxes due to financial losses from Claremont claiming that privatizing retirement homes is the right way.
County commissioner Jean Foski, the only Democrat on the board, said he was skeptical of the offer to sell and the county had not fully informed the public of all future scenarios for Claremont. It was.
Foski, a liaison with the county commission’s planning committee, said Thursday that he had yet to receive Claremont’s proposed sales contract and that county and Aller attorneys were currently working on the matter. .
Cumberland County plans to market a new zoning district in Middlesex Township to promote sales of Claremont. Around the Web-Pennsylvania
Source link Cumberland County plans to market a new zoning district in Middlesex Township to promote sales of Claremont. Around the Web-Pennsylvania