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Plattsburgh City Council considers snow emergency parking revisions and other items during latest meeting

The Plattsburgh City Council meets on November 17, 2022
Pat Bradley
The Plattsburgh City Council meets on November 17, 2022

The Plattsburgh City council had a number of items on its agenda Thursday evening, ranging from approval of department payrolls to considering whether to hire a consultant to help update the zoning code.

The council meeting began with two public hearings. One was to receive public input on a change to parking restrictions during snow emergencies and the other if local law should be amended to allow and regulate the keeping of hens in residential backyards. No one commented on either proposal.

During the regular session, councilors unanimously approved changing parking requirements during snow emergencies. On-street parking will be now be restricted until snow emergency lights stop flashing. Previously, parking was restricted from midnight until 6 a.m.

Ward 5 Democrat Caitlin Bopp noted that councilors had considered a number of different parking options for snow emergencies.

“No matter what we do it’s going to be slightly inconvenient," states Bopp. "You know whether we had gone with adding the extra hours or whether we had gone with the every other day type thing there was going to be some degree of it. So we’re trying to do the thing that is the most efficient for the city and the least inconvenience possible for residents. Snow is inconvenient.”

Ward 6 Democrat Jeff Moore added that the goal is to get streets cleared quicker.

“In the end it’ll be better for everyone," muses Moore. "And if this doesn’t work out we can always try something else. But we need to do something to clear things up.”

“Right," adds Councilor Bopp. "And we need to make sure that they’re done thoroughly too because the other issue is that when there are cars that are piled up, people are trying to go in the streets because they’re not trying to be on the sidewalks which are problematic. We had to do something.”

The proposed local law to allow residents to keep hens was not on the regular agenda because it is still before a county board.

City councilors also authorized the mayor to sign an agreement for consulting services to help update the city’s zoning code. Before the vote, Councilor Moore questioned Mayor Chris Rosenquest.

“So where are we going to be at after this?”

“After this," responds Mayor Rosenquest, " we start the process of the zoning code and land use planning rewrite. This goes hand-in-hand, in a way, this zoning code rewrite goes hand-in-hand with the changes made to the Comprehensive Master Plan. Once those changes are made and that Comprehensive Master Plan comes before council for approval, this work essentially gets started in earnest. As most of us know the Comprehensive Master Plan and the zoning code is old. Older than we would like it to be.”

Ward 2 Democrat Mike Kelly joined in after it was noted that the last updates occurred in the 1990’s.

“So we’re overdue.”

“Well overdue," confirms Rosenquest. "What 15, 20 years should be the cycle for something like this? Yeah and we’re pushing 30 on this one.”

“Most people know that we have a dire housing shortage in our city," notes Kelly, "and this would help I would imagine.”

“That’s the goal," saysRosenquest. "With our Comprehensive Master Plan it does identify a number of fairly strategic changes to our ability to facilitate housing development. We can ensure that any housing developer that does come to the city of Plattsburgh can develop housing without a lot of hurdles and roadblocks. That’s the goal of this rewrite and the Comprehensive Master Plan itself.”

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