Starkville Daily News
Aldermen hold March recess meeting
During the Starkville Board of Aldermen's recess meeting on Tuesday evening, the board looked at a request for a certificate of appropriateness for a site alteration that has already been performed.
The applicants, Will and Stephanie Arnett, added gravel to the rear yard of their property on 400 Greensboro Street to create additional parking space without a certificate of appropriateness as required in the city's unified development code (3.16.1.C.1).
The applicants' attorney William Starks came to the board and spoke on behalf, starting by stating the Arnetts did first receive a notice of an alleged violation of the city's historic preservation commission, but then made his case as to why the alteration is appropriate.
“The gravel in the backyard is not visible from the street, it's behind the gate in the backyard. There's a privacy fence that was approved previously for the prior owner, and the gravel is located behind that. It is the understanding from the prior homeowner that those spaces were used for parking,” said Starks.
When he attended the city's historic preservation commission meeting on March 8, he heard numerous comments that suggested the alteration as appropriate. He even quoted someone from the meeting who had said, “If they would take the gravel back up and send in another application, we would approve this.”
“Several said, ‘We think it's appropriate. But we don't like the fact that the application was done after the fact,'” Starks said.
On behalf of the Arnetts, Starks asked the board to reverse the denial of the application. A motion was made by Ward 2 Alderman Jeffrey Rupp to approve the certificate of appropriateness, seconded by Ward 1 Alderman Ben Carver, which was passed.
After the meeting, Mayor Lynn Spruill believes the board made the proper decision by approving the request.
“I think they saw that it was a situation where it was already in existence and that there was some doubt that it was an intentional flouting of the rules. So I think that they decided that was something that was worth allowing to stay,” Spruill said.
The Starkville Board of Aldermen will hold their last work session meeting of the month on Friday, March 31 at 11 a.m. held at City Hall on the second floor conference room.