HARTVILLE  Despite protests by some members that the move could set a dangerous precedent, village council approved a conditional use zoning permit on a parcel of property adjacent to Lincoln Square Apartments on Lincoln Street on April 3.

The approval was recommended by the village board of zoning appeals for the construction of storage buildings on the parcel. The issue had been tabled at council’s March 20 meeting.

Four residents attended the April 3 council meeting in opposition of the variance, which was requested by Lincoln Square Apartments owner Dean Windham.

The request had initially been denied by village Zoning Inspector Ray Bednarczyk. At issue, Bednarczyk explained, is the fact that the Stark County Auditor lists the parcel as a buildable lot.  According to the village zoning code, such a lot must have a "primary building" in order for an access building, like a garage, to be built.

The BZA recommended the variance in this instance, stating that the neighboring apartment building itself could be considered the required primary building. The BZA recommendation was upheld by council 4-1, with Councilwoman Bev Green voting against. 

Following the vote, Green said she is concerned this exception could set a precedent, whereby other property owners may request permission to build access buildings on lots without a primary building.

Other actions    

- Council also granted an easement to resident Tom Brenkle onto village property adjacent to Stan Balliett Field to allow Brenkle access to a property he is farming and is in the process of purchasing.

Green abstained from the vote due to a conflict of interest; Brenkle is Green’s brother.