Friday, May 12, 2017

Project on state trust lands not subject to local zoning

A state judge has invalidated a conditional-use permit Wayne County officials issued for a gravel pit on state trust lands on the edge of Teasdale, raising new questions on how much say local governments have over projects authorized by the Utah School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration.

The county last year approved a gravel pit on part of a 120-acre SITLA parcel just upwind from Torrey, the artsy gateway to Capitol Reef National Park, in an area zoned for agriculture and low-density residential. The move outraged some residents, who took the dispute to court.

Judge George Harmond ruled that state-owned land is exempt from county zoning rules, so Wayne County properly declined to "rezone" the parcel in question. At the same time, Harmond said in his ruling the conditional-use permit issued to Brown Brothers Construction to operate the pit is not valid — since such permits are premised on a zoning designation. Salt Lake Tribune