The Dell Rapids City Council passed the second reading of Ordinance 822, Rezone Request for 608 E 6th St from R2 to B2, during their regular meeting on Monday, October 19th. This is the second time a rezone request for this piece of property has passed a second reading. The first time was in February when the request came to the council as Ordinance 816. The rezone never took place as residents near the property obtained enough signatures to keep the rezone from taking place.
This city ordinance was again met by opposition by neighboring property owners. Michael Carpenter voiced his concerns to the council about rezoning the property to B2. He also mentioned that the last time this came up to the council, those opposing the rezone received more than enough signatures to keep the rezone from happening.
Carpenter said, “It doesn’t matter the number of people that come into the room against it, it doesn’t feel like our voices are being heard. I have petitions here from the last time of 238 residents in Dell Rapids that don’t want this rezoned. Not me, not my neighbors. We got the percentage we needed of the 250 ft around the neighborhood. We also went out and got 238 registered voters in the city of Dell Rapids to say no to this, which is over and beyond what was required by that petition, and we didn’t even petition the whole town. My question is, ‘How many people does it take before you guys listen to them?”
City Councilman Tom Earley responded, “All we are going to do is follow what the zoning laws say should do. It’s up to this board to act in the manner they think is right, the action they feel is correct. You guys also have the right to follow suit as the zoning laws allow you to. And I would hope that whatever does transpire will happen in a respectable way. There’s a difference of opinion, and that’s great. That’s what democracy is all about. … I think we need to be responsible to the intent and act in good faith of the zoning laws. We have that responsibility to Mr. Roemen, and we have that responsibility to you guys. ”