Logan Township's zoning board has turned down a variance request from a Lakemont woman who wanted to keep two horses on her wooded 5-acre property.
While an attorney for owner Diana L. Worley said the property's hilly terrain made it unsuitable for more residential use, the zoning board members disagreed and turned down the request.
It hasn't met any of the criteria for a variance, Chairman Wesley Barnhart said. Board members Randy Diviney and John Donley agreed and also voted no.
Neighbors told the zoning board they feared Worley's boarding of horses on her property would subject their properties to flies, unpleasant odors and waste runoff.
Zoning board Solicitor Gary Caldwell asked attorney Shawn Sullivan why Worley chose to seek a variance for the residentially zoned land, rather than asking the township supervisors for a zoning change to agriculture.
Sullivan said he didn't think Worley's property could be rezoned as agricultural for lack of nearby land with an agricultural zoning.
An aerial view of the property showed it accessible via a private road off Fourth Street, sandwiched into the hilly area between Lakemont and the Castle Farms housing development.
Sullivan said Worley has no plans to build additional houses on her property. Anyone who might consider building there would encounter great difficulty meeting township ordinances, enough to justify the granting of a variance, Sullivan said.
It's still available for residential development, township Solicitor Larry Clapper told the zoning board. He reported that township supervisors, in individual responses to Township Manager Tim Brown, were offering a consensus in opposition to the request.
"Just by there being a home there, we already know it can be used for residential use," Clapper said.
Charles Socey, who owns two properties next to Worley's acreage, told the zoning board his properties will encounter difficulties if horses are moved onto that land.
"I don't want to deal with the runoff, the stink and everything else," Socey said.