City Council Approves RV Public Hearing, Decides On Stop Sign Actions

Oskaloosa City Hall

Oskaloosa City Hall

by Eduardo Zamarripa, CRI

Oskaloosa, Iowa – On Monday night, City Council approved a resolution to schedule a public hearing that will amend changes to the city code (Chapter 17.28) regarding the parking of recreational vehicles on properties. Now that the council has passed the resolution, the amendment will have to go through three readings before it’s put into effect. The first reading will be on Aug. 5.

Some of the changes proposed regarding the parking of RVs on a property are:

  • Change the allowed height of an RV on a property from eight feet to 13 feet and six inches
  • Change the allowed length of an RV on a property from 25 feet to no restriction
  • RVs have to be parked at least 20 feet away from the end of the driveway on a property
  • Add gravel and crushed stone as surfaces where an RV can be parked on a property
    • This only applies to campers; heavy commercial vehicles can still only be parked on a property’s hard surface

According to Chapter 17.04.030 of the code, an RV is defined as “a vehicle towed or self-propelled on its own chassis or attached to the chassis of another vehicle and designed or used for temporary dwelling, recreational, or sporting purposes. Recreational vehicles include, but are not limited to, travel trailers; campers; motor coach homes; converted buses and trucks, boats, and boat trailers.”

Heavy commercial vehicles are trucks, tractor cab units, trailers, recreational vehicles, boats over twenty-five feet in length and vehicles over ten tons gross empty weight.

The current code only allows RVs to be parked on a property’s paved driveway (which can be asphalt, concrete or brick) if they do not exceed 25 feet in length or eight feet in height.

The council also agreed on action relating to four way stop intersections:

  • To not make the intersection a four-way stop, but to re-study the intersections of C Ave. and North 9th Street as well as C Ave. and North 11th Street after the hospital addition is complete and school is back in session.
  • To place the Mahaska county sheriff’s speed trailer on C Ave. to encourage drivers to follow the speed limit. To continue recording vehicle speed at the intersection by marked and unmarked police vehicles. And, to install 25 MPH speed limit signs on C Ave.

Recently, residents that opposed the removal of stop signs at the intersection of C Ave. East and North 9th Street submitted a petition with seventy-seven signatures to the council. They requested that the stop signs at that intersection be put back. That prompted Mayor Dave Krutzfeldt to ask the public projects committee to meet and make recommendations on what the city council should do next.

The council also approved a request from the Cellar Peanut Pub for outdoor entertainment, alcohol consumption outside building premises, and a temporary variance from noise during RAGBRAI on Thursday, July 25. The approval is contingent upon the “Pub” getting the necessary application filed with the State of Iowa. The application is required because the Pub is requesting to sell alcohol in an area adjacent to its property.

Two other public hearings were scheduled by the council. One hearing will be in regards to the vacation and sale of 60′ by 16.5′ feet of the North-South public alley adjacent to 835 South 2nd Street. The other hearing is scheduled for Aug. 19 to consider levying a “special” assessment against private property for weed cutting by the city in accordance with section 8.20 of the city code.

An ordinances also went through a second reading. William Penn University is attempting to change its zoning district from multiple family residential district (R-3) to multiple family residential district with conditional planned use overlay district (R-3/CP). William Penn needs to change its zoning district in order to be able to have alcoholic beverages on its premises. The university is not going to sell alcoholic beverages. It requested the zoning change to be able to provide alcohol for an event, such as a wedding.

The council authorized two resolutions:

  • Approved an amendment to loan and disbursement agreements between Oskaloosa and the Iowa Finance Authority. By doing so, the council authorized and provided for the re-issuance of the $1,515,000 sewer revenue capital, loan note, series 1994, the $2,671,000 sewer revenue capital, loan note, series 1996, and the $4,017,000 sewer revenue capital, loan note, series 2002.
  • Directed the city manager to complete a land purchase agreement for the West End Sanitary Sewer Project lift station site.

The council also approved to direct the city manager to execute a professional services agreement with Garden & Associates for the First Ave. East sidewalk project in an amount not to exceed $24,600 and received a report on quarterly activities by Mahaska Community Recreation Foundation Executive Director Sherry Vavra.

The next City Council meeting is on Aug. 5 at 6 p.m.

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