June 29, 2017 Print

Regular Meeting
Thursday, June 29, 2017

A regular meeting of the Planning and Zoning Commission of the City of Trinidad was held on the 29th day of June 2017 at 5:00 p.m. in the City Hall at 212 Park Street, Trinidad, Texas, at which time the following subjects were discussed to wit:

1. Call to Order: Chairman Kay Hernandez called the meeting to order at 5:07 p.m.

2. Roll Call: Board members present at the meeting were Betty Sanders, Beth Parker, Helen Covey and Billy Ray Hornbuckle.

3. Invocation: The invocation was given by Billy Ray Hornbuckle.

4. Visitors/citizen forum: Stacy Dunacusky, Sydney and Larry Airheart, Kelly and Ricky Stanfield, Roy Stanfield and Dalene Rundell attended the meeting.

Dalene Rundell is having problems with her neighbor. At the beginning, her neighbor was willing to pay for one half of the fence price. When it came time for the fence to be built, he no longer wanted to pay. In the meantime, they had dog problems; he trapped her dog when he came into his yard. She went into his yard and got her dog out of the trap. She doesn't want problems with him but has problems. She has four pages of different things that have happened. She had the land surveyed and her property goes to the middle of his driveway. She's paid for a fence permit for the back yard. She says she lives in fear because of him and she's not sure she'll keep the house. (Dalene gave the board several examples of why she was fearful.) She caught him over the fence feeding her dog and she's afraid he will poison her dog. Sydney Airheart gave some examples of things she's seen. Kay Hernandez said the board couldn't do anything about the neighbor situation. Dalene wants an exception to the zoning ordinance for a front fence on the side. Kelly Stanfield spoke of what she thinks. Dalene said that if they don't allow the fence, her neighbor will be delighted.

Kay Hernandez said they are going to define the fencing section of the ordinance. There was a lady that recently was told to take her front fence down. The setbacks are 25 ft from the side of the road. She told Ms. Rundell she was sympathetic for the situation she is going through.

Stacy Dunacusky has a fence on the front side before the ordinance was changed. She said the fence wouldn't look bad.

Roy Stanfield said we are on a subject we don't need to be on (concerning the neighbor). He said Dalene came to him about the fence and he told her to go and get a fence permit and told her she could put it on the side of the yard. He's asking that the board think about the future needs for Trinidad. He pointed to Malakoff's ordinance on fencing. The Police Chief read the fence definition in the Zoning Ordinance. He said that means your front yard is the front and front side of the house. Billy Ray Hornbuckle said we need to better define the definition. He said listening to the problems; maybe we should let her put the side fence up.

Kay Hernandez said we do need to better define what a front yard is. She said that the city depends on the Police Department to do code enforcement because the city can't afford a full time code enforcement employee. They gave Ms. Hernandez a couple of samples of fences that recently went up. Ms. Hernandez said that the existing ordinance was set up and voted on by the council.

Kay Hernandez asked Helen Covey what she thinks. Ms. Covey said that in her opinion a fence should be from the side of the house to the back yard. The Chief said the department can make sure he doesn't go on her property. He asked Ms. Rundell why she didn't call them. Ms. Rundell said she thought about it.

Betty Sanders said the town looks so bad all the ordinances need to be enforced. She said she deals with her neighbors in much the same way. She's not fearful so much as apprehensive.

Kay Hernandez said the board will start working on this and schedule next Thursday for another work session on the Zoning ordinance.

Roy Stanfield knows there is so much to do. Our town is so old and we're trying to start by building a house on a city property so that a possible family can move in which would help not only the city but the school. It's very hard but when you don't have a very big city budget, you are very limited to what you can do. We're trying to deal with the problems Trinidad has. We have people that have moved away that won't even maintain an empty lot. We have problems all over this town and it's hard to make everyone happy. All I can say we are trying.

Ms. Rundell said she didn't think the board would want her death on their conscious. She thinks her neighbor will snap one day. Kay Hernandez said that if she is that fearful she needs to call the police department or the county sheriff's department.

5. Work Session:

Kay Hernandez said we have an ordinance that states no fencing on the front/sides. We need to possibly make it clearer. I sympathize with her situation but it's not going to solve her neighbor situation. There's already a boundary set by the property line.

The city inspector will be invited to the next work meeting on July 6, 2017 to discuss the following issues:

• Fencing
• Square footage minimum
• Definitions
• Travel Trailers
• Front yard buildings

6. Board Members Inquiry Time: Pursuant to Tex. Gov. Code Sec. 551.042 the Members may inquire about a subject not specifically listed on this agenda. Responses are limited to a recitation of existing policy or a statement of specific factual information given in response to the inquiry. Any deliberation or decision shall be limited to a proposal to place the subject on the agenda of a future meeting.

Kay Hernandez said that Mike Airheart resigned from the board. Daryl Terry also resigned.
Ms. Hernandez asked that everyone think about two people that could serve on the board.

7. Adjourn: Motion was made to adjourn by Kay Hernandez. Billy Ray Hornbuckle seconds the motion. Motion carried unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 7:00 p.m.

Signed: Kay Hernandez, Chairman

Attest: Terri Newhouse, City Secretary