Zoning commission approves food truck regulations

by Dan Holland

May 28 zoning commission meeting

The Sagamore Hills Township Zoning Commission voted to send a zoning text amendment regarding food trucks to township trustees for final approval.

The regulations specify the number of times within a one-year period a property can host a food truck event, with certain specifications for residential, senior living/senior care and commercial district properties.

Overnight parking on streets would be prohibited, and sales would not be permitted after 9 p.m. Food truck operators would be required to have zoning registration prior to an event.

“It’s something that we became aware of; that food trucks were becoming very popular and they were being used in planned unit developments like Greenwood and Eaton Estates,” said zoning commission member Dr. Robert Woodruff. “But also, they may be used by individuals; if they have a graduation party, they may want a barbecue food truck or something like that.”

“We had nothing on the books for [food trucks] prior to this, and our philosophy is that if it’s not on the books, then it’s not permitted,” he added. “So, we’re just trying to put something in place, as we feel this is a reasonable thing.”

Accessory buildings

Commission members discussed the possibility of altering maximum allowable accessory building size in the township.

At present, maximum sizes are established by lot size. Accessory buildings – with two being permitted on a property – may not have a combined total greater than 50% of the residential living area, nor more than 1.5% of the total lot size.

“We’re looking at a way of simplifying the code,” said Zoning Inspector Ray Fantozzi. “But we don’t want an accessory building that is larger than the actual house.”

Fantozzi suggested setting a formula based on the livable space of a home, using a percentage such as 50, 60 or 75% of the home size.

Commission member Dr. David Koncal suggested establishing a percentage amount – 60% of the main building total footprint – to use as a formula in determining maximum combined sizes for accessory buildings.

“Ray needs to be able to pull up the number easily on the tax card; we need to make it reasonable for our zoning inspector to come up with a number,” said Woodruff. “Our goal needs to be to set limits on how big an accessory building can be and make it as practical as possible for our zoning inspector to interpret the main building or principal structure to make that determination. He has to have a number he can use without going out there with a yardstick.”

The issue was tabled until the June 24 meeting to receive more public input.

Tattoo parlors

Zoning commission members also discussed amending township code to allow for tattoo parlors in addition to barber and beauty shops.

“We don’t have any [tattoo parlors] in Sagamore Hills, but there are two or three in Northfield Center,” said Woodruff. “As a commission, we don’t normally consider the value of a business from a taxation standpoint. We really look at how it is going to work for the community, what kind of services we want here and what the community needs.”

Members approved making the change, which will be forwarded to the Summit County Planning Commission.

Outgoing zoning member honored

Dr. David Koncal (back row, holding plaque) was recognized for 37 years of service to the Sagamore board of zoning appeals and zoning commission. He was surrounded by
zoning commission members (l-r, front row) Dennis Witkiewicz, Dr. Robert Woodruff, Dwight Chasar and Peter Lachina, and (l-r, back row) Attorney Jeff Snell, Administrative Assistant Joanne Taylor, Trustee John Zaccardelli, Zoning Inspector Ray Fantozzi and Trustee Paul Schweikert. Photo by Dan Holland.

Township Trustee John Zaccardelli read a proclamation prior to the meeting honoring Koncal for 37 years of service with the township board of zoning appeals and then zoning commission.

It was Koncal’s final meeting as a member of the zoning commission as he will be moving to Dayton. He has been a Sagamore resident for 45 years.

“We made a difference in the township; we did our job,” said Koncal. “It was a good team that worked together in zoning, and without that team, we would have gone nowhere. The trustees, the zoning members, the board of zoning appeals – they’re all good people doing a great job.” ∞