Chapter 102 - Administration and Enforcement
Chapter 102 - ADMINISTRATION & ENFORCEMENT
ARTICLE I. - IN GENERAL
Sec. 102-1. - Public purpose. The purpose of this chapter is to set forth responsibilities & procedures for the administration of this Land Development Regulation. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-1)
Sec. 102-2. - Applicability.
(a) Administrative procedures described in this chapter shall apply to all development activities undertaken within the city, unless specifically excepted.
(b) It shall be unlawful to commence the clearing of land, excavations for, or the construction of any building or other structure, including accessory structures, or to store building materials or erect temporary field offices, or to commence the moving, alteration, or repair (except necessary repairs, not affecting the external or party walls, chimneys, stairways or heights of buildings) of any structure, including accessory structures, until the director has issued a development order for such work.
(c) The unlawful activity termed “clearing of land” in subsection (b) above shall not include general lot clearing, removal of underbrush, or clearing of unprotected trees as long as neither protected trees nor their root systems are cut, removed, or damaged during said process. However, nothing contained in this definitional clarification shall authorize any other unlawful activities described above without a development order, e.g., introducing “fill” to a tract as provided in F.S. § 380.04(2); modification of the contours of the land so as to cause/increase erosion or untreated stormwater runoff; or negatively impact native vegetation within a special treatment zone as provided in section 105-123. Additionally, “clearing of land,” as authorized herein shall not authorize the owner or developer to avoid the installation of a protective barrier around protected trees as required in chapter 105 during the clearing process. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-2)
Secs. 102-3—102-22. - Reserved.
ARTICLE II. - DEVELOPMENT REVIEW PROCEDURES
Sec. 102-23. - Purpose & intent. The purpose of this article is to provide a uniform system for the review of development or redevelopment activities undertaken within the city. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.1)
Sec. 102-24. - Development orders.
(a) Building permits; certificates of occupancy. Development orders may be issued by the planning official or his or her designee after review & approval of an application for a development order & may be conditionally issued subject to project approval by other governmental bodies having jurisdiction over the development. No permits shall be issued for a development until a development order has been issued & all conditions satisfied pursuant to the provisions of this Land Development Regulation.
(b) Development order guidelines. The decision to issue a development order shall be based upon the following guidelines, including but not limited to:
(1) The proposed development must not be in conflict with or contrary to the public interest;
(2) Unless otherwise exempted, the proposed development must be consistent with the comprehensive plan & the provisions of this Land Development Regulation;
(3) The proposed development must not impose a significant financial liability or hardship for the city;
(4) The proposed development must not create an unreasonable hazard or nuisance, or constitute a threat to the general health, welfare or safety of the city’s inhabitants;
(5) The proposed development must comply with all other applicable laws, statutes, ordinances, regulations or codes.
(c) Other permits required. In addition to obtaining a development order from the city, the developer must also obtain all other applicable permits or exemptions as may be required by law. In the event approval from the city is prerequisite to obtaining other required permits, the city shall issue a letter of intent which states that the proposed development is in compliance with this Land Development Regulation, & that such approval is conditioned upon the developer obtaining all other required permits. The developer must provide proof to the city that all permits or exemptions have been granted prior to receiving a development order.
(d) Issuance & validity of development orders.
(1) Upon the approval of a Level 1, 2, or 3 development, the applicant shall have one year from the date of approval to obtain his development order. If the project is a Level 3 development, the department of planning & land use (the “department”) shall within 10 days after the date of such approval, mail written notice to the applicant advising the applicant that he has one year from the date of the approval of his development to obtain his development order from the department. The notice shall be sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, postage prepaid, & be addressed to the applicant at the address set forth in his application or to the agent of owner who may have filed the application on behalf of the owner. The notice must state the expiration date of the one-year period. If the expiration date falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or other legal holiday, the expiration shall be extended to the next working day. If the notice is returned to the department unserved, the notice shall nevertheless, be deemed effective notice to the applicant, unless the applicant or his agent has advised the department, in writing, of a change in their address before the notice was mailed. If an applicant fails to obtain his development order within the one-year period, the approval shall become null & void & the applicant or his successor in interest will have to reapply for a new development order. Payment of all attendant fees is a prerequisite of entitlement to a development order.
(2) An applicant who has an approved development on which a development order has not been issued on the effective date of this section, shall have one year from the effective date of this section to obtain his development order, otherwise the approval of the development shall be null & void. The department shall, within 10 days after the effective date of this section, mail a written notice to all applicants of Level 3 developments, or their agents, of an approved development advising them of the date by which they must obtain their development order. All requirements & conditions set forth in subsection (a) as to the required notice & conditions applicable to obtaining a development shall apply to approved developments on the effective date of this section. At the time the development order is issued, the development order shall be in compliance with the comprehensive plan for the city.
(3) Unless otherwise specified in the development order, a development order shall remain effective for a period of 6 months from the date of issuance, except for those issued for docks & boat structures whose expiration date shall be concurrent with that of applicable regulatory agencies with jurisdiction over the project, i.e., FDEP & the CORPS. Extensions may be granted by the administrator in the event the developer is unable to obtain other applicable permits pursuant to subsection (c) above. Under no circumstances shall a development order remain effective for a period of more than 2 years from the date of issuance, including any extension, unless there is an enforceable development agreement which provides to the contrary & unless it is for a dock or boat structure for which the expiration shall be concurrent with that of applicable regulatory agencies with jurisdiction over the project, i.e., FDEP & the CORPS.
(4) Notwithstanding the provision in subsection (3), if a development order is timely challenged by a third party adverse to both the city & the applicant for the development order in any legal proceeding, then the time period for commencement of the work authorized by such permit shall be tolled until the final disposition of that legal proceeding challenging the development order. The final disposition of the legal proceeding challenging the development order shall serve as the date of issuance of the development order for the limited purposes of determining the term of the development order as contemplated in subsection (3).
(e) Development agreement. To provide flexibility & to insure that the intent of this Land Development Regulation is satisfied, the city may enter into a development agreement with a developer. Development agreements shall be governed by the provisions of F.S. §§ 163.3220—163.3243, as amended.
(CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.2; Ord. No. 2280, § 1, 10-23-2007; Ord. No. 2331, § 1, 11-25-2008)
Sec. 102-25. - Exceptions. No development order shall be required when:
(1) A development order has been issued by the city prior to the adoption of this Land Development Regulation & development has commenced & continued in good faith in reliance upon such order.
(2) The development or redevelopment activity is included as part of a larger plan of development or a phased development for which a development order is issued pursuant to this Land Development Regulation. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.3)
Sec. 102-26. - Development review process.
(a) Developers shall comply with the following procedures:
(1) An application for development approval must be obtained from the city, which shall be in the form prescribed by the director & shall be completed by the developer or the developer’s authorized agent.
(2) The completed application shall constitute a request from the developer for development approval when submitted to the director along with the site plan requirements specified in section 102-27
(b) Developers shall comply with the following procedures:
(1) Level 1.
a. Activities subject to Level 1 review are:
1. Construction or renovation of an individual, single-family, detached residence, duplex, triplex, or quadraplex on one lot or parcel;
2. Placement of a single factory-built manufactured home, including either a DCA approved RDMH structure or a HUD approved SDMH structure, as herein defined & according to the requirements of the city’s manufactured housing standards set out in chapter 105, article VII on one lot or parcel;
3. Construction or placement of an accessory structure as defined in chapter 104, article V;
4. Remodeling, renovation, expansion, or other similar activity involving alterations or additions to an existing, residential structure within the property lines on which the structure is located; or
5. “Signage activity” including the construction, location, or installation of signs pursuant to chapter 106
b. Criteria for review:
1. Compliance with the general standards specified in section 102-24
2. Attendant concurrency requirements in chapter 103
3. Site plan requirements in section 102-27
4. And other applicable standards as specified in chapters of this Land Development Regulation.
c. Additional information or impact assessment may be required for development activities in designated special treatment zones.
d. Level 1 development orders may be issued by the director or the director’s authorized agent without further approval.
(2) Level 2.
a. Activities subject to Level 2 review include:
1. Any residential development or signage activity excluded from Level 1 review;
2. Any residential development of 5 acres or less with a density of not more than 5 units per acre or less; or any nonresidential development, whether or not in connection with a residential development, of 10 acres or less;
3. Any expansion, modification, or enlargement, or enlargement onto adjacent properties, of commercial buildings in that area of the city, zoned GC & lying between &/or fronting on Grace Avenue & Magnolia Avenue, bounded on the north by 14th Street &, if extended, on the south by St. Andrews Bay, which relate to: (i) buffering, (ii) coverage &/or open space, (iii) parking requirements, (iv) set back requirements on modification of grandfathered buildings, (v) interior remodeling & (vi) minor exterior changes, including without limitation such changes as exterior coatings/sealants, windows, roof repairs, roof line modifications, roof skylights, awnings, & building signs.
b. Criterion for review:
1. The general standards specified in section 102-24
2. Concurrency requirements set forth in chapter 103
3. Site plan requirements set forth in section 102-27
4. Other applicable development standards as specified in other chapters of this Land Development Regulation.
c. Additional information or impact assessment may be required for development activities in special treatment zones.
d. Level 2 development orders may be issued after review & approval by the director.
e. The director may request the recommendations of the planning board for Level 2 developments, when the project does not clearly fall within the guidelines of this Land Development Regulation.
(3) Level 3.
a. Activities subject to Level 3 review are:
1. Any development activity which is not subject to Level 1 or Level 2 review.
2. Any development over 3 stories in height located in RLD or MU districts or involving communications & other tower structures.
3. Any development of regional impact as defined in F.S. ch. 380.
4. Any industrial development.
5. Any manufactured home subdivision development.
6. Any expansion, enlargement, replacement or reconstruction of a building or structure within an historical nonconforming waterfront development.
b. Level 3 review must satisfy the criteria for Level 2 developments, plus an assessment of impacts expected to result from the proposed development.
c. An impact assessment shall address the following issues:
1. Adequacy of public facilities & services to serve the proposed development;
2. Suitability of site conditions including topography & soils & any site modifications necessary to accommodate the proposed development;
3. Ingress & egress to roadways;
4. Drainage or stormwater management;
5. Vehicular traffic, including on site parking;
6. Required permits from other governmental agencies;
9. Public safety or potential public nuisance;
10. Impacts on natural resources; &
11. Such other criteria deemed necessary by the director or the planning board.
d. Additional information or activities assessment may be required for development activities in special treatment zones.
e. A landowner seeking to expand, enlarge, replace or reconstruct a building or structure within an historical nonconforming waterfront development has the burden of establishing that the 3 conditions specified in section 102.79(b)(7) will be met, namely proportionality, absence of an increase in any incompatibility, & the absence of an increase in the burden of any associated nonconforming use. At that point, in order to deny the request the burden shall shift to the city to demonstrate by competent substantial evidence that granting the request will worsen one or more of the issues listed in subsections [(b)(3)c. 1—10.] of this section. As an alternative to denial, the development approval may impose upon the building or structure approved specific conditions & requirements to address an issue of concern.
f. Development orders may be issued for Level 3 development activities only after review by the director, review by the planning board & approval by the city commission. The decision of the city commission shall control over that of the director & the planning board.
(CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.4; Ord. No.2330, § 1, 2-10-2009)
Sec. 102-27. - Site plan & approval required.
(a) Any application for development approval shall be submitted together with a site plan in accordance with the requirements of this section.
(b) The developer, or their authorized agent, shall submit a minimum of 3 copies of the proposed site plan, drawn to an acceptable scale, to the director. Except for Level 1 activities, all site plans shall be certified by a land surveyor, landscape architect, architect, or engineer licensed by the State of Florida, unless waived by the director. In addition, computer disks shall be provided for all AutoCAD-produced drawings.
(c) The site plan for signage activities shall include:
(1) A site plan sketch which depicts the relationship of the proposed sign to all significant sign conditions including setbacks, buildings, adjoining roadways, protected lands, protected trees, & other circumstances likely to be affected by the location, construction, or erection of the sign;
(2) The site plan shall also include a legal description of the site; the name, address, & telephone number of the owner of the property, the developer, the designer or contractor as the case may be; & the date of site plan preparation.
(d) The site plan for Level 1 activities shall include:
(1) A vicinity sketch showing: the relationship of the site to adjacent designated land uses & streets; location of the proposed development on the site (lot or parcel), including driveways & parking; access to adjacent streets; % of the site to be covered by impervious surfaces; flood zones & base flood elevations, spot elevations, & finished floor elevations, & environmental features including wetlands, shoreline vegetation or construction on submerged lands, if any, & the location of protected trees;
(2) The boundary lines & dimensions of the area shown in the site plan including angles, dimensions, & references; a north directional arrow; map scale; & the proposed use of the lands;
(3) A legal description of the site; the name, address, & telephone number of the owner, developer, & designer or contractor (if applicable); & the date of site plan preparation.
(e) A site plan for Level 2 & 3 activities shall include detailed drawings which show the following:
(1) All information required for Level 1 site plans;
(2) The existing & proposed grades, the drainage & erosion control plan, & the proposed structures with appropriate topographic contour intervals or spot elevations;
(3) The shape, size, & location of all structures, including the flood elevations; the floor area & ground coverage ratios, & the relative finished ground & basement floor grades;
(4) Natural features such as wetlands, shoreline, lakes or ponds, & protected trees; man-made features such as existing roads, sidewalks, walls, fences, or other structures, indicating which are to be retained, removed, or altered; the adjacent properties & their existing uses; & land use designations;
(5) Proposed streets, driveways, sidewalks, & parking facilities; vehicular turnarounds, curb cuts, & loading areas; the location of solid waste receptacles; the inside radii of all curbs; the width of streets, driveways, & sidewalks; the total number of available parking spaces specifying the type of construction with critical dimensions; & the ownership of the various facilities;
(6) The size & location of all existing & proposed public & private utilities or easements; water & sewer tap locations; sewer clean outs & turns; & water meter types, sizes, & locations; &
(7) All proposed landscaping, landscaped buffers, & the dimensions & location of all proposed signs.
(f) Site plans or other information concerning requests for amendments to the comprehensive plan shall be submitted on forms approved by the director. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.5)
Sec. 102-28. - Review period. All applications for development approval shall be submitted to the director. Required reviews & subsequent recommendations shall be completed by the city within 30 days after the date the division is satisfied that the application contains all required information, except for affordable housing applications which shall be completed within 25 days. Applications which are determined to be incomplete shall be promptly returned to the applicant. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.6)
Sec. 102-29. - Withdrawal of applications. Application for development approval may be withdrawn at any time prior to final action. Any fees or charges required for development review shall be forfeited by the applicant upon the withdrawal of an application. (CPLDR 199, § 2-3.7)
Sec. 102-30. - Fees & charges. The city commission may establish by resolution & periodically adjust the schedule of fees or charges for development review. No development orders shall be issued until all applicable fees & charges have been paid by the applicant. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.8)
Sec. 102-31. - Certifications. Unless waived by the director, all certifications of forms or materials required by the Land Development Regulation must be completed & affixed before the document or application will be considered for development review. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.9)
Sec. 102-32. - Final site inspection & acceptance.
(a) The construction of all developments shall comply with all conditions of the development order & site plan, or development agreement, if applicable.
(b) Upon completion of the development, the developer shall provide a “notice of development completion” to the director. The director or the director’s designated representative shall, within 5 working days after receipt of such notice, conduct a final site inspection to ensure that the development was constructed in accordance with the approved development order or development agreement.
(c) The director shall, within 5 working days following a final site inspection, either accept or reject the completed development.
(1) Upon acceptance, the director shall certify that the completed development is in compliance with the approved development order or development agreement & shall authorize the building official to issue a certificate of occupancy;
(2) If the completed development is rejected, the director shall provide written notice to the developer & the building official describing the basis or circumstances upon which the development was rejected.
(d) No certificate of occupancy shall be issued, nor shall the utilities or electric service be connected, nor acceptance of dedicated streets or easements be authorized until a certification of acceptance is issued by the director. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.10)
Sec. 102-33. - Right of entry. The director or the director’s designated representative shall have the right to enter upon any public or private property at all reasonable times before, during or after the development to inspect the improvement or premises to insure compliance with this Land Development Regulation. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-3.11)
Secs. 102-34—102-54. - Reserved.
ARTICLE III. - ADMINISTRATIVE RESPONSIBILITIES 
(55) Editor’s note— Ord. No. 2331, § 1, adopted Nov. 25, 2008, deleted the former Art. III, §§ 102-55—102-59, & enacted a new Art. III as set out herein. The former Art. III pertained to administrative responsibilities & derived from CPLDR 1993, §§ 2-4.1—2-4.5; Ord. No. 2100, § 1, 9-13-2005; Ord. No. 2185, §§ 1, 2, 5-9-2006.
Sec. 102-55. - Purpose. The purpose of this article is to define administrative responsibilities under this Land Development Regulation.
(Ord. No. 2331, § 1, 11-25-2008)
Sec. 102-56. - City commission. The city commission shall have final authority on the following matters:
(1) To adopt & amend the comprehensive plan, including land use districts shown on the land use map, after a review of the recommendations of the planning board;
(2) To adopt & amend the provisions of this Land Development Regulation after a review of the recommendations of the planning board;
(3) To approve, deny, or conditionally approve development permits for level 3 large-scale development activities, after the review of city staff & upon the recommendation of the planning board;
(4) To approve order of the annexation of outlying areas into the city, & to assign land use designations to annexed areas;
(5) To vacate or abandon public ways, including rights-of-way & easements;
(6) To approve development agreements as specified in article II of this chapter;
(7) Approve community redevelopment plans pursuant to F.S. § 163.360(5), (2008).
(8) To take any & all other final action not otherwise delegated to a board or to staff, which is deemed necessary & desirable to implement the provisions of this Land Development Regulation.
(Ord. No. 2331, § 1, 11-25-2008)
Sec. 102-57. - Planning board & board of adjustment—General provisions.
(a) Membership. The planning board & the board of adjustment shall each consist of 5 members & be appointed by the city commission. Voting members must be residents of the city. The planning official shall serve as a non-voting ex-officio member of each board & shall be responsible for providing such support & technical assistance as the boards may require. All members shall serve terms of 2 years, with eligibility for reappointment. In addition, the planning board shall have a representative of the school board as a non-voting ex-officio member.
(b) Removal. Members of each board shall serve at the pleasure of the city commission & without compensation for services rendered. Any member may be removed by the city commission with or without cause. In the event any member is no longer a resident or is convicted of a felony or an offense involving moral turpitude, the city commission shall terminate the appointment of such person as a board member. Should any member fail to attend 3 consecutive, duly called meetings of the board, such member’s appointment to the board shall be subject to termination by the city commission. The planning official shall give notice of the nonattendance of a member to the city manager.
(c) Presiding member. Annually, the board of adjustment & the planning board shall each elect a chairperson & a vice-chairperson from among the respective members of each board, & may create such other offices as necessary for the conduct of its affairs. Each board shall also appoint a secretary, who may be an officer or employee of the city, but not a board member. The presiding officer of each board shall be in charge of all proceedings before the respective boards, & shall take such action as necessary to preserve order & integrity of all proceedings.
(d) Funding. The city commission shall appropriate funds, at its discretion, to cover the fees & expenses necessary to discharge the functions of the planning board & of the board of adjustment. In addition, the city commission may establish, by resolution, a schedule of fees to be charged for petitions to each board. Subject to the fiscal practices of the city, each board may expend all sums appropriated & other sums available to it from fees, gifts, grants, or other sources, upon approval by the city commission.
(e) Quorum & procedure. No meeting of the planning board or of the board of adjustment may be called to order, nor may any business be transacted by such board without a quorum of at least 3 members being present. The chairperson of each board shall be considered & counted as a member & shall vote upon all actions requiring approval. The chairperson of each board may introduce any motion for action before the board. Each board shall adopt rules for the transaction of its business & shall keep a record of its activities.
(f) Public meetings. All meetings of the board of adjustment & the planning board shall be public meetings, & public participation shall be encouraged in all matters before each board. Meetings will be conducted at City Hall (9 Harrison Avenue, Panama City, Florida) unless otherwise specified by the city commission. Each board may establish a schedule for regularly held meetings & shall provide public notice thereof prior to any meeting. (Ord. No. 2331, § 1, 11-25-2008)
Sec. 102-58. - Local planning agency.
(a) Established. Pursuant to & in accordance with F.S. ch. 163, the planning board is hereby designated & established as the local planning agency.
(b) Duties & responsibilities of local planning agency. The duties & responsibilities of the planning board shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
(1) To prepare amendments to the comprehensive plan, to hold at least one public hearing, after due public notice, to review proposed amendments, & to make recommendations to the city commission based thereon.
(2) To monitor the effectiveness of the comprehensive plan, to recommend to the city commission such changes in the comprehensive plan as may be from time to time required, & prepare reports required by F.S. ch. 163.
(3) To review proposed changes to this Code & report their findings to the city commission as to the consistency of the proposal with the adopted comprehensive plan, or element or portion thereof. However, the planning board shall not have the right to reconsider petitions requesting a change of the land use district or a change of zoning for a particular parcel of property or any portion thereof more frequently than 6 months after the date it was last considered by the planning board irrespective of any change in ownership of the parcel of property.
(4) To assess the goals, objectives, & policies of the comprehensive plan & make recommendations to the city commission of any changes the board may deem appropriate to improve the effectiveness of the plan, as required by state statutes.
(5) To review applications for development approval which are subject to the board’s authority, & make recommendations to the city commission as to the approval or denial of such applications, stating the basis therefore.
(6) To review other development activities upon the planning official’s request.
(7) To perform any other functions, duties, & responsibilities assigned to it by the city commission, or by law.
(8) To grant or deny variances from the bulk regulations of the city ancillary to the approval of projects or developments subject to their jurisdiction, if the conditions set forth in section 102-81 are satisfied. All other variances shall be subject to the jurisdiction of the board of adjustment.
(9) Prior to consideration of a community redevelopment plan by the community redevelopment agency (CRA) board, review such plan for conformity with the comprehensive plan. The planning board shall submit written recommendations with respect to the consistency with the comprehensive plan to the CRA board within 60 days after receipt of the plan for review pursuant to F.S. § 163.360(4), (2008).
(c) Amendments, approval. The concurring vote of at least 3 members shall be necessary to make a favorable recommendation to the city commission regarding comprehensive plan amendments, revisions to this Land Development Regulation, & development orders. All other actions shall require the concurring vote of a majority of the members present at a meeting having a quorum. (Ord. No. 2331, § 1, 11-25-2008)
Sec. 102-59. - Board of adjustment.
(a) Established. There is hereby established a board of adjustment for the City of Panama City.
(1) Duties & responsibilities. The board of adjustment shall have the authority to:
a. Hear & decide appeals from any decision, determination, or interpretation by any administrative official with respect to the provisions of this Land Development Regulation.
b. Approve or deny variances from the bulk regulations contained in this Land Development Regulation, with exception to minimum lot size requirements for newly platted subdivisions, or any self-imposed hardship.
(b) Initiation of appeals. An appeal may be initiated by an owner, applicant, or adjacent property owner aggrieved or affected by any order, decision, determination, or interpretation by an administrative official with respect to the provisions of this Land Development Regulation so long as the appeal does not require an amendment to the comprehensive plan, does not conflict with the provision that expressly prohibits an action & does not constitute a use variance. The appeal shall state the following:
(1) The legal description, address & project name (if applicable) that pertains to the appeal.
(2) The provisions of the Land Development Regulation that pertain to the appeal with the administrative official’s interpretation, & the applicant’s interpretation outlined. Reasons why the applicant believes the administrative official’s interpretation is incorrect must be stated.
(c) Procedures. An appeal petition in the form prescribed by the planning official must be filed with the division within 10 working days of the decision or action to be appealed. The filing of such appeal petition will require the administrative official whose decision is appealed to forward to the division, within 5 working days, any & all records concerning the subject matter of the appeal. Failure to file such appeal shall constitute a waiver of any rights to appeal any interpretation or determination made by an administrative official.
(d) Effect of filing an appeal petition. The filing of an appeal petition shall stay the proceedings unless the administrative official rendering such decision, determination, or interpretation certifies, in writing, to the board & the applicant that a stay would pose an imminent threat to life or property, in which case the board shall not stay the appeal. The board may review such certification & grant or deny a stay of the proceedings.
(e) Actions of the board of adjustment. The board of adjustment shall consider the appeal petition at its next scheduled meeting following receipt of all records concerning the subject matter of the appeal which shall be held not less than 15 days & no more than 45 days after the appeal is filed. Upon the conclusion of the hearing, the board of adjustment shall issue & publish its decision in writing (but in no event later than 30 days) & send a copy thereof to the petitioner. The board may reverse, affirm, or modify the decision, determination, or interpretation appealed from, &, in so doing, shall be deemed to have all the powers of the official or board from which the appeal is taken, including the power to impose conditions to be complied with by the petitioner. The decision of the board of adjustment shall be final & binding on all parties.
(f) Vote required. The concurring vote of at least 3 members shall be necessary for the approval of an appeal petitions. All variances shall require the concurring vote of a majority of the members then present & voting at a meeting having a quorum.
(g) Appeal to the board of adjustment. Any person or affected party aggrieved by any decision of the board of adjustment may appeal to the county circuit court or to a special magistrate if designated as part of the city’s appeal process. Such appeal must be filed no later than 30 days after the appeal hearing before the board of adjustment. Review shall be by petition for writ certiorari, & shall be governed by Florida law. (Ord. No. 2331, § 1, 11-25-2008)
Sec. 102-60. - Community redevelopment agency.
(a) The community redevelopment agency board, or a designated committee, shall review all applications for development approval & site plans for development proposed in the community redevelopment areas as specified in chapter 104
(b) Recommendations resulting from review specified in above shall be forwarded to the planning official for consideration in the final plan review.
(Ord. No. 2331, § 1, 11-25-2008)
Secs. 102-61—102-76. - Reserved.
ARTICLE IV. - PROTECTION OF LANDOWNER’S RIGHTS
Sec. 102-77. - Intent. It is the intent of the city commission to ensure that each & every landowner has the beneficial use of property as that right is defined by law, & to afford all landowners who believe they have been deprived of such use relief through nonjudicial procedures. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-5)
Sec. 102-78. - Development as a matter of right. Developments as a matter of right are those which are permitted, allowable, or conditionally approved in a land use district provided the development complies with the comprehensive plan, this Land Development Regulation, & all other applicable laws, statutes, ordinances, codes or regulations. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-5.1)
Sec. 102-79. - Nonconforming development.
(a) Nonconforming uses. Nonconforming uses are those land uses which are in existence on the effective date of this Land Development Regulation that do not comply with the provisions of this Land Development Regulation. Nonconforming uses may continue, subject to the following restrictions:
(1) Public hazard. The use must not constitute a threat to the general health safety & welfare of the public.
(2) Expansions or extensions. Nonconforming uses shall not be expanded or enlarged or increased or extended, including a nonconforming use associated with an historical nonconforming waterfront development.
(3) Modifications of use. Nonconforming uses may be modified or altered in a manner which decreases the nonconformity, but may not be modified or altered in a way which increases the nonconformity. Once a nonconforming use or part thereof is decreased in nonconformity, the nonconformity may not be increased thereafter.
(4) Abandonment or discontinuance. Where a nonconforming use is discontinued for 6 months or more or is otherwise abandoned, the existence of the nonconforming use shall terminate, & any further use of the premises shall comply with the provisions of this Land Development Regulation.
(5) Change of ownership. Change of ownership of other transfer of an interest in real property on which a nonconforming use is located shall not in & of itself terminate the nonconforming status of the premises.
(6) Change in use. Should a nonconforming use be converted in whole or in part to a conforming use, that portion of the nonconforming use so converted shall lose its nonconforming status.
(b) Nonconforming developments. Nonconforming developments are those buildings or structures which were in existence on the effective date of this Land Development Regulation & which, by design, location or construction, do not comply with the provisions of this Land Development Regulation. Nonconforming developments may remain in a nonconforming state subject to the following restrictions:
(1) Public hazard. The building or structure must not constitute a threat to the general health, safety & welfare of the public.
(2) Ordinary repair & maintenance. Normal & ordinary maintenance & repair to a nonconforming building or structure shall be permitted.
(3) Expansion or extensions. A nonconforming building or structure shall not be expanded or enlarged.
(4) Damage or destruction. Where a nonconforming building or structure is substantially damaged or destroyed, reconstruction of such development shall comply with the provisions of this Land Development Regulation. A structure shall be considered substantially damaged or destroyed if the cost of reconstruction or repair is 50% or more of the fair market value of the structure at the time of the damage or destruction. If the nonconforming development is comprised of multiple structures, the cost of reconstruction shall be measured against the combined fair market value of all of the structures in determining the issue of substantial damage.
(5) Attrition. If a building or structure has an age of 20 years or more & has not been actively occupied for a period of 6 months or more, then prior to reoccupation, the building or structure will be required to comply with the requirements of this Land Development Regulation, including but not limited to requirements relating to stormwater, height, density, intensity, setbacks, parking, open space, buffers, & landscaping.
(6) Conflict. In the event of conflict between the provisions of this section & chapter 105, article III, division 2, the provisions of such division shall prevail.
(7) Historical nonconforming waterfront development. Notwithstanding subsection (3), a building or structure which is part of an historical nonconforming waterfront development may be expanded, enlarged, replaced or reconstructed without strictly complying with the provisions of this Land Development Regulation provided that:
a. Such expansion, enlargement, replacement or reconstruction is in proportion to the expansion or enlargement of neighboring buildings or structures of similar form which has occurred during he life of the historical nonconforming waterfront development;
b. Such expansion, enlargement, replacement or reconstruction does not increase any incompatibility between the existing historical nonconforming waterfront development (HNWD) & development in the surrounding area; &
c. The burden of any associated nonconforming use upon the neighboring properties & owners is not increased.
(c) Condemnation relief.
(1) Intent. It is the intent to provide relief to the owners of land affected by roadway condemnation by allowing a relaxation of requirement of land use regulations which are necessary for reasonable use of the property & to provide relief where, as a result of land acquisition for condemnation purposes, substandard parcels are created, existing structures are rendered nonconforming, available parking area reduced, or use of property is otherwise curtailed.
(2) Applicability. This is meant to be applied where strict enforcement of this Land Development Regulation would have the effect of increasing the cost of land acquisition to the condemning authority &/or causing hardship to the landowner.
a. Existing use areas which are not within the part taken, but, because of the taking, do not comply with the setback, buffer, minimum lot requirements, lot coverage, stormwater management, parking, open space, & landscape provisions of this Land Development Regulation, shall not be required to be reconstructed to meet such requirements & the remainders shall be deemed thereafter to be conforming properties. The exemption thus created shall constitute a covenant of compliance running with the use of the land.
b. Any conforming building, vehicular use area, or other permitted use taken either totally or partially may be relocated on the remainder of the site without being required to comply with the setback & other provisions of this Land Development Regulation except that the relocated building, vehicular use area, or other permitted use shall be set back as far as is physically feasible without reducing the utility or use of the relocated building, vehicular use of the relocated building, vehicular use area, or other permitted use below its pretaking utility or use. The exemption thus created shall constitute a covenant of compliance running with the land.
c. Any properties in category (c)(3)a or (c)(3)b of this section which are thereafter destroyed, or partially destroyed, may be restored.
d. As to the exemptions in subsections (c)(3)a & (c)(3)b of this section, either the condemning authority or the landowner or both of them, after proper notification to the land owner, may apply in writing to the director for a determination that the granting of the exemption will not result in a condition dangerous to the health, safety, or welfare of the general public. The director shall, within 30 days of the filing of the application, determine whether or not the waiver of the setback requirement granted by this section will endanger the health, safety, or welfare of the general public. If the director determines that the granting of the exemption under this section will not constitute a danger to the health, safety, or welfare of the general public, the director shall issue a signed letter to all parties granting waivers. The letter shall specify the details of the waiver in a form recordable in the public records of the city. If the application is denied, the director shall issue a signed letter to the applicant specifying the specific health or safety ground upon which the denial is based.
e. Any development permits or variances necessary to relocate building, vehicular use areas, or permitted uses taken or partially taken can be applied for by the condemning authority &/or landowners & administratively granted for the property in question.
f. Any legally nonconforming existing land use which, as a result of the taking or reconstruction necessitated by the taking, would be required to conform shall continue to be a legally nonconforming land use. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-5.2; Ord. No. 2330, § 1, 2-10-2009)
Sec. 102-80. - Vested rights. A property owner’s right of development prior to adoption of this Land Development Regulation shall be vested, even if such development does not comply with this Land Development Regulation, subject to the following circumstances:
(1) Final development approval has been granted to the developer by the city & a valid, unexpired building permit has been issued to the developer by the City's Building Department Contractor (also referred to as the City’s Building Department), provided the development is commenced within the permit period.
(2) Within 6 months after adoption of this Land Development Regulation the property owner received approval of vested rights status from the appeals board.
(3) All vested development shall be undertaken in strict conformity to the design plans & specifications approved by the city & the City’s Building Dept. Any modifications, additions or alterations to the approved plans & specifications shall not be considered vested development. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-5.3)
Sec. 102-81. - Hardship relief; variances.
(a) Any person desiring to undertake a development activity that does not comply with this Land Development Regulation may apply to the planning official for a variance to the bulk regulations. All variances shall be subject to review & approval by the board of adjustment so long as the variance does not require an amendment to the comprehensive plan, is not expressly prohibited & is not a use variance. In addition, it is not contrary to the public health, safety, & welfare, & is granted due to an unnecessary hardship to the property owner.
(b) No variance shall supersede or abrogate the requirements of flood damage prevention, or the requirements of the National Flood Insurance Program.
(c) The board of adjustment shall make an initial determination whether the need for the proposed variance arises out of the topography, shape, environmental, or similar conditions of the particular site, or whether the condition is common to numerous sites in the surrounding area. Any decision as to the granting of a single-property variance shall be subject to the 7-point test. In a group-variance situation, the board shall make all required findings based on the cumulative effect of granting the variance to all properties similarly situated.
(d) No variance of the provisions of this Land Development Regulation shall be approved unless the following conditions are satisfied by substantial & competent evidence:
(1) Strict compliance with the provisions of this Land Development Regulation would deprive the property owner rights & privileges enjoyed by other properties in the area or same zoning district, or would render the enforcement of this Land Development Regulation impracticable;
(2) Conditions for which the variance is being applied are unique or unusual to the site or structure in question;
(3) The variance request is not based solely upon the desire to reduce the cost of developing the site;
(4) The variance shall not confer on the petitioner the grant of a special privilege, or be based on a self-imposed hardship;
(5) The proposed variance will not alter the essential character of the area surrounding the site;
(6) The proposed variance will not degrade level of service standards as established in the comprehensive plan;
(7) The effect of the proposed variance is in harmony with the general intent of this Land Development Regulation & the specific intent of the relevant provisions thereof.
(e) In approving a variance request, the board of adjustment may impose such conditions & restrictions deemed necessary to preserve the continuing intent of the comprehensive plan & the provisions of this Land Development Regulation.
(f) Any action of a variance request must state the reasons why the variance should be granted.
(g) No variance may be continued to another meeting unless there is need for additional time for discovery of the facts needed to address the request.
(h) The variance granted must be the minimum required to make reasonable use of the land.
(i) Variances for height may only be issued under the following circumstances:
(1) Existing flood ways, surge zones, or easements on the site present an unnecessary hardship on the development of the site.
(CPLDR 1993, § 2-5.4; Ord. No. 2185, § 3, 5-9-2006; Ord. No. 2331, § 1, 11-25-2008)
Sec. 102-82. - Amendments to the comprehensive plan.
(a) Requests for plan amendments shall be submitted to the planning official on forms to be provided by the city. The request shall be reviewed by the planning board which shall submit recommendations to the city commission for final action. Requests for plan amendments involving small-scale developments may be considered by the planning board at any regular or special meeting in accordance with section 102-83
(b) Requests for large-scale plan amendments will be considered by the planning board twice each year after public notice. Final action shall be taken by the city commission in accordance with section 102-83
(c) The planning official shall report to the state & planning agency plan amendments approved by the city commission for consistency review pursuant to F.S. § 163.3184.
(d) The procedure for amendment of the comprehensive plan shall comply with the requirements of F.S. ch. 163.
(e) The planning board shall not recommend approval of a plan amendment unless it makes a positive finding, based on competent evidence, on each of the following:
(1) The proposed plan amendment will not degrade level of service standards established in the comprehensive plan, or minimum concurrency requirements;
(2) The proposed plan amendment is in harmony with the general intent of the comprehensive plan;
(3) The proposed plan amendment will not exceed traffic limitations, cause a fire hazard, or create a hazard to the public health, welfare & safety;
(4) Changes in land use designations or districts must be compatible with adjacent land uses & districts,& one that will not become a potential nuisance. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-5.5; Ord. No. 2331, § 1, 11-25-2008)
Sec. 102-83. - Public notice process & participation/due process. The purpose of this section is to set forth the requirements & procedures for public notice requirements to afford due process of law. Public notice requirements shall be as follows:
(a) Public notice requirements are mandatory for the following actions taken by the city commission, planning board, or board of adjustment (as applicable):
(1) Variance requests. Advertisement in the local newspaper at least 10 days prior to the hearing before the board of adjustments. Signage shall be placed on the parcel at least 10 days prior to the hearing. A public notice shall be mailed to surrounding property owners within a 300-foot radius of the subject parcel & be postmarked at least 14 days prior to the hearing.
(2) Comprehensive plan map amendments & zoning requests. Advertisement in the local newspaper at least 10 days prior to the hearing before the planning board (the local planning agency). Signage shall be placed on the parcel at least 10 days prior to the hearing. A public notice shall be mailed to surrounding property owners within a 300-foot radius of the subject parcel, & shall be postmarked at least 14 days prior to the hearing.
(3) Vacations of rights-of-way (ROW). Signage shall be placed at each end of the ROW subject segment at least 10 days prior to the first reading of the ordinance. If the vacation is an alleyway, a public notice shall be mailed to all property owners within the block of the subject request. Other ROW vacation requests shall require a public notice mailed to property owners within 200 feet of the segment. All mailed notices shall be postmarked at least 14 days prior to the city commission hearing.
(b) Public notices also have the following requirements:
(1) All public notice costs shall be borne by the applicant. This includes, but is not limited to, all costs incurred due to advertising in the local newspaper & postage.
(2) All notices shall be mailed through the U.S. Postal Service certified by the applicant, & such certification receipts shall be submitted to the planning official with the list of recipients at least one week prior to the corresponding hearing for verification. If the receipts cannot be verified against the list of recipients, this may be cause for delay of any applicable hearing.
(3) Public notices may not be mailed prior to 30 days before the scheduled hearing.
(4) The public notice shall be in the format supplied by the planning official.
(5) The applicant shall use the most recent property appraiser data for determination of the mailing list for surrounding property owners.
(CPLDR 1993, § 2-5.6; Ord. No. 2369, § 1, 12-15-2009)
Secs. 102-84—102-109. - Reserved.
ARTICLE V. - ENFORCEMENT & PENALTIES
Sec. 102-110. - Purpose. The purpose of this article is to designate responsibility & to provide procedures for the enforcement of this Land Development Regulation, & to establish penalties for violations.
(CPLDR 1993, § 2-6.1)
Sec. 102-111. - Enforcement responsibilities. The provisions of this article shall be administered by the director, or his designated representative. In addition to other remedies provided by this Land Development Regulation & other applicable laws, regulations or ordinances, the director shall take the following actions when a violation has been determined to exist:
(1) No subsequent development approval or order or certificate of occupancy shall be issued until the violation has been corrected;
(2) The violator shall be informed that no further work or construction under an existing development approval or order shall be permitted until the violation is corrected. A “stop work” order shall be issued by the building official & shall become effective at the time of delivery to the violator or upon posting at the job site;
(3) No clearing of land or construction, erection, placement, commencement of any other form of development shall occur in the city without a development order, & then only in accordance with the conditions of such order. Any unauthorized development may be declared a public nuisance by the city commission pursuant to the provisions of chapter 12, article II. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-6.2)
Sec. 102-112. - Enforcement procedures.
(a) The director shall initiate proceedings against violators of this Land Development Regulation.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, when a violation of this Land Development Regulation has been determined to exist, the director or his designated representative shall issue a written “notice of violation” & cause the same to be served, mailed, or delivered to the violator or posted on the premises. The notice shall refer to the provisions of this Land Development Regulation that are alleged to have been violated. The violator shall have ten working days from the date of notice of violation to correct the violation or to enter into written agreement with the city outlining what actions will be taken to correct the violation by a date certain. If, after the applicable period, the violation has not been corrected, the director shall issue a “stop order,” if applicable, to the violator. The violator shall be subject to the penalties prescribed in section 102-114
(c) If the director has reason to believe that any violation of this Land Development Regulation presents an imminent threat to the public health, safety & welfare, a notice of intent & a notice of violation shall not be a prerequisite to action to avert such threat or danger.
(d) Extensions of the 10-day period to correct or remedy violations may be approved by the director upon demonstration of extenuating circumstances by the violator.
(e) Copies of all notices of intent or notices of violation shall be transmitted to the city manager.
(CPLDR 1993, § 2-6.3)
Sec. 102-113. - Appeals.
(a) An appeal of any notice of violation may be initiated by any person charged with a violation of this Land Development Regulation.
(b) Initiation of an appeal shall stay the imposition of penalties provided in section 102-114 until such time as a final order is issued by the appeals board.
(c) Appeals board shall conduct a hearing & make a determination at its next regularly held meeting & shall determine whether a violation exists or has occurred.
(d) At the hearing, the director shall have the burden of showing the existence of a violation to the satisfaction of the board. Formal rules of evidence will not apply to the proceeding. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-6.4)
Sec. 102-114. - Penalties or remedies.
(a) Criminal penalties. Any person failing to comply with the provisions of the Land Development Regulation shall be guilty of an offense & shall, upon conviction, be subject to fine & imprisonment pursuant to section 1-8
(b) Civil remedies. If any building or structure is erected, constructed, reconstructed, altered, repaired, or maintained, or if any building, or structure, or land, or water is used in violation of this Land Development Regulation, the city may institute appropriate civil action in a court of competent jurisdiction to prevent, correct, or abate the violation, including, but not limited to, injunctive relief.
(c) Citation. After 10 days following the service of a notice of violations, if no appeal has been taken, the violator may be fined an amount to not exceed $500.00 per day & such fine shall constitute a lien against the premises which are the subject of the violation. Each day that the violation continues shall be a separate offense.
(d) Double fees. Where work for which a development order is required by this Land Development Regulation is started or proceeded prior to obtaining said development order, the fees herein specified shall be doubled, but the payment of such double fee shall not relieve any persons from fully complying with the requirements of this Land Development Regulation in the execution of the work nor from any other penalties prescribed herein.
(e) Alternative remedies. The sanctions & procedures provided for in this article are alternative remedies & do not prevent the city from enforcing this Land Development Regulation by other means, including, but not limited to, code enforcement board action. (CPLDR 1993, § 2-6.5)