August 21, 2014

Building breather

Parshall City Council calls for building moratorium

By Jerry W. Kram

Parshall needs to catch up with the times.

That’s why the Parshall City Council has imposed a six-month moratorium for all new building permits except for single family homes and emergency services buildings in Parshall. Permits applications that were filed before the August 13 regular council meeting will still be considered.

The reason for the moratorium is to update the city’s planning and zoning ordinances. City Attorney Bill Woods said the current rules were adopted in 1955 and are very out of date. The council has approved a contract with the Vogel Law Firm of Fargo to incorporate all of the city’s ordinances into a city code as well as an updated planning and zoning code.

"We need to get the ordinances in order so we have the rules and regulations set up for everybody," said Mayor Kyle Christianson. "We have a lot of things to take into consideration. Do they own the land? Are they partners? Are they fully invested or just part? It plays a big part. You have to see documentation to go forward."

Parshall has have a number of developers come in and ask for permits for substantial projects that have gone undeveloped for years. The new ordinances would ensure a project is on a sound footing before it can proceed. Christianson said he hopes the new rules will actually speed up development in Parshall.

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