At last week’s Cody City Council work session, council members and Mayor Matt Hall decided to start the process of forming a committee to reconsider revisions to the city’s Planning & Zoning rules at its December work session.

That procedure is called “kicking the can down the road.”

Led by council member Landon Greer, members of the council have been considering ways off-and-on over the past eight years to streamline the P&Z process.

Hopefully, council members will take ownership of the issue and get a start at a resolving the problem in December.

At the heart of the issue is how much decision-making authority nonelected P&Z board members have in ruling on site plans and other building issues.

Greer wants the city ordinance to be changed so that P&Z members are only deciding on issues mandated by the state.

Council member Heidi Rasmussen says there needs to be clearer delineation between P&Z requirements and simple suggestions.

Very few citizens want an “anything goes” policy for building sites and architecture so that one owner can devalue properties around it.

City planner Todd Stowell said, “For at least some of the community, architecture and landscaping is important.”

That is not the issue. It appears the subject before the council is not a question of what should be allowed, but should unelected P&Z members or city ordinances control the process.

Stowell further noted, “I’m willing to look at city ordinances, but it’s a heavy rewrite.”

We agree the ordinance rewrite will be a long, arduous process, but it needs to be done.

We urge the Cody City Council to start the heavy lifting now. This issue has been kicked down the road far too long and the December work session is an ideal time to get started.

John Malmberg

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