Elizabethtown businessman Ronald Huggins petitioned for the property to be rezoned from Residential Agricultural (RA) to commercial (C). In the petition, Huggins states that the property will be used for a retail establishment.
In answer to a question from an adjoining property owner, Huggins stated that he plans to build a eating establishment and/or convenience store on the site.
The 6.93-acre parcel of land has 794 feet of road frontage and is located on the southeast corner of the intersection. It is presently a field and is owned by Charlene and Ronald Gooden of Elizabethtown.
The Planning Board had previously reviewed the request and recommended to the commissioners that it be approved.
The request was unanimously approved.
On another planning issue, the commissioners approved an amendment to the Bladen County Zoning ordinance regarding private family cemeteries.
When the zoning ordinance was initially adopted two years ago, new private family cemeteries were prohibited. However, the commissioners, on the recommendation of the Planning Board, amended the ordinance earlier this year to permit new family cemeteries with certain restrictions.
The amendment passed on Monday will add another restriction-that cemetery boundaries must be at least 100 feet from any property line.
The original restrictions required gravesites to be at least 100 feet from any water supply and that cemetery boundaries be at least 100 feet from existing dwellings. However, no buffer was required between the cemetery and adjoining property lines.
In presenting the amendment to the commissioners, County Planner Greg Elkins said the present ordinance would restrict what adjoining property owners could do with their property unless a buffer were added.
He explained that the first cemetery he permitted after the commissioners agreed to allow new family cemeteries was placed at the corner of the large property and that the first grave was placed next to the adjoining property line. He stated that this would prohibit the adjoining property owner from building a dwelling or drilling a well within 100 feet of the property line.
After a very brief discussion, the commissioners voted unanimously to adopt the additional restriction.