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AM comp plan amendment approved

By Rick Catlin, Islander Reporter

Anna Maria now has an amendment to its 2007 comprehensive plan that allows construction in the conservation land-use zone on lots that were previously platted and accepted by the city.

The 2007 comp-plan contained language that prohibited any development in the conservation land-use zone because commissioners at that time believed there were no privately owned lots in the zone.

City attorney Jim Dye later reviewed the zone and found 11 lots accepted as “buildable” by the city before World War II.

He also found other privately owned lots in the zone with structures on them. Under the “no development” clause of the comp plan, owners of those structures could not receive a building permit for even minor renovations, such as roof repairs or window replacements.

Commissioners first approved the amendment in October 2010.

The amendment then had to be reviewed by the Florida Department of Community Affairs and the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, the state’s land-planning agency, before it could become law.

The DEO approved the amendment on Aug. 25 and no challenge to the amendment was presented within the allowed 30 days from the date of approval, building official Bob Welch said.

“It’s now a comprehensive plan amendment,” Welch said.

Only new structures can be built on the 11 lots and each of those lots is limited to one single-family residence, according to the amendment. Existing structures in the zone can be renovated, but construction of a new residence on lots where homes already exist is prohibited.

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