Per­ryville pro­poses to up­date zon­ing plans



— Try­ing to stay one step ahead of the chang­ing busi­ness land­scape, town of­fi­cials are look­ing at a draft of changes to the zon­ing or­di­nance.

Mayor Jim Eber­hardt and Com­mis­sioner Robert Ashby had spe­cific con­cerns at the town work ses­sion where the pro­posal was dis­cussed. Eber­hardt wanted to know if the ex­ist­ing or­di­nances would guide Perr yville on the lo­ca­tion of such things as hookah bars and methadone clin­ics. Ashby wanted the same in­for­ma­tion on detox­i­fi­ca­tion clin­ics.

“There’s a sec­tion for clin­ics and clinic ser­vices,” Diana Battaglia, plan­ning


and zon­ing co­or­di­na­tor, told the board. “There are a lot of con­di­tions.”

Among them, she noted was a clinic’s prox­im­ity to schools and houses of wor­ship.

“What is the right lo­ca­tion,” the mayor asked. “They are needed, but where do we want them?”

Towns, in­clud­ing Per­ryville, had sim­i­lar con­ver­sa­tions more than 20 years ago when adult book stores popped up in neigh­bor­ing Har­ford County. Towns worked to re­vise zon­ing then to have con­trol over where such es­tab­lish­ments could be lo­cated. Zon­ing reg­u­la­tions have to al­low for any le­gal busi­ness, but zon­ing codes can de­cide where they are per­mit­ted.

Battaglia said the lo­ca­tion and reg­u­la­tion of hookah bars is al­ready es­tab­lished at the state level.

“Wher­ever cig­a­rettes are sold, you can sell them,” she said, adding hookahs, or water pipes for smok­ing tobacco prod­ucts, are con­sid­ered a cig­a­rette prod­uct by the U. S. Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion.

“They have hookah bars in Delaware,” Com­mis­sioner Michelle Linkey noted.

Ashby coun­tered that wouldn’t be likely in Perr yville.

“In Mary­land, you can’t smoke in­side,” Ashby said, re­fer­ring to the 2007 law passed by the Mary­land Gen­eral As­sem­bly.

Hookah bars or lounges were ex­empted, how­ever, and are now crop­ping up across the state.

The draft also adds lan­guage for farm mar­kets and farm pro­duc­tion, which specif­i­cally spells out that no farm an­i­mals are al­lowed in town lim­its in a res­i­den­tial district.

An­other re­vi­sion turns the ap­proval process for events, in­clud­ing out­door fes­ti­vals and craft shows, over to the zon­ing ad­min­is­tra­tor rather than the elected body.

Lan­guage was also added to al­low for side­walk cafes and drive- in movie the­aters.

Tat­too par­lors could also pop up in ad­di­tional dis­tricts if ap­proved, in­clud­ing C- 2 and the CEMUD zones.

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