by AnnGardner Eubank
IRVINGTON—Dawn Fowler on Tuesday, February 7, was sworn in by Mayor Julie Harris to fill the unexpired term of Phil Robinson on the planning commission.
She then was appointed by commission chairman Tom Chapman to serve as secretary to the planning commission, a position previously held by Robinson.
The commission discussed a number of conditional use permit (CUP) applications, most of which pertained to short-term rentals (STR).
Regarding an application submitted by John Baker IV to operate an STR at 125 Edgewood Lane, Chapman brought up a previous complaint from neighbor Colleen Sweeney who voiced concerns of a high volume of STRs in her neighborhood.
During discussion, Chapman reminded the commission members they had recommended to council an amendment to the STR ordinance, stating neighbor complaints and area STR density could be taken into consideration when voting on applications.
Commission member Jeremy Taylor noted no matter what, neighbor complaints would always exist.
Commission member Albert Pollard Jr. noted that there is a very strong renter’s market and that because there is seemingly no interest in long-term rental but just short-term stays on top of the density issues and neighbor complaint, he would be inclined to vote against recommending the CUP approval.
Pollard then introduced a motion to send the application to the town council without a recommendation. David Clarke seconded the motion. Members Lee Hood Capps, Fowler, Taylor, Chapman, Pollard and David Clarke voted in favor and the motion passed, 6-0. Member Ruth Fuller was absent.
Kim and Jessie Hillenbrand submitted an application to