Local News

AP ordinance aimed at overcrowding

AVON PARK - A proposed ordinance addressing housing standards including occupancy levels will be presented for discussion at Monday’s city council meeting. City Manager Julian Deleon said, “We regularly get complaints of overcrowded housing within the city from the residential zoning districts. We are establishing a housing standard, which provides regulatory guidelines on what those [maximum] occupancy levels will be based on the housing size.” There is no restriction on the number of children, but the proposed ordinance specifies the maximum number of adults allowed in a dwelling based on the number of bedrooms, he said. A maximum of four occupants would be allowed in a dwelling with one bedroom, six in a two-bedroom dwelling, eight in a three-bedroom dwelling and 10 occupants in a five-bedroom dwelling, according to the proposed ordinance.
A copy of the draft document was provided, three weeks in advance of Monday’s meeting, to The League of United Latin American citizens (LULAC), the NAACP and the city council, Deleon said. It’s only a discussion item for the city council and the community to come back and provide input. “From there we will determine which direction we will end up going, but we are certainly trying to hear everybody’s point of view,” Deleon said. In the past, the city has heard both sides of the argument, he said. Some believe there should be no restrictions on how many people can live in a house while others argue that if it’s a single-family zoning district how can you have a home with a high density of individuals. The 10-page proposed ordinance also specifies space requirements and minimum standards for bathroom facilities, lighting, windows, ventilation and basic needs and equipment (such as hot water and cooking facilities).

LaRue Planning & Management Services, Inc. is scheduled to present a housing workshop on the proposed revisions to the housing code and related changes to the land development code.

Currently the land development code and housing code have different definitions for a boarding house/rooming house. There is one recommended new definition for both documents.

Also, the current land development code has no definition for a sleeping room or bedroom and the housing code has no definition for a building.

LaRue Planning is recommending a single definition for a bedroom and a single definition for a building in both land development code and the housing code.

The proposed revisions and a draft of the housing ordinance are available in the council meeting packet, which is online on the City’s website avonpark.cc.


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