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The Winter Springs City Commission voted to extend a temporary development moratorium after discussing new stormwater improvement standards during its Monday night meeting.
“The entire intent of the moratorium was to pump the brakes for a second to make sure that we’re providing some protection for the residents, making sure that our stormwater systems are designed at a level that will offer greater protection to our residents,” Mayor Kevin McCann said. “Now that we’ve decided on some improvements, what are the next steps? First of all, the moratorium is due to expire in … roughly two weeks.”
The temporary moratorium was originally adopted on Jan. 9 by the Commission, when it passed 3-2, with Commissioners Cade Resnick and Victoria Colangelo voting against. The moratorium would have expired on April 9.
The moratorium was originally introduced to pause development as the city amended section 9-241 of the city code to enhance its stormwater design requirements and conduct a stormwater management study after flooding from recent hurricanes and large storms. Prior to the moratorium discussion, the Commission unanimously voted to adopt the Florida Department of Transportation’s critical duration analysis as a means of improving development standards for stormwater criteria.
McCann said the Commission wants to avoid “undue burdens” on developers as it takes time to prepare the ordinance, while still prioritizing its citizens’ concerns.
“We are trying to do the right thing, be aware of the costs of these things to people,” McCann said. “But be certainly aware residents are going to come first.”
The Commission voted 5-0 in favor of extending the moratorium another 90 days until July 8. Assistant City Attorney Kristin Eick said the drafted resolution would extend the moratorium beyond April 9 but then could be terminated when the Commission brings the stormwater ordinance back around for a second reading on April 24.
Resnick said he was concerned about section four of the ordinance and if the moratorium would impact any projects.
“Are there any projects at this point or coming forward that if we continue this, is going to be affected?” Resnick asked.
“I don’t know anyone that would be held off by a couple more weeks, but I can’t say for sure,” Community Development Director Casey Howard said.
McCann said that though there are still conversations to be had about specific stormwater improvements and projects, the city has made those steps without unreasonably burdening developers.
“We’ve improved the standards for stormwater without an incredible undue burden on development, where it would just be beyond unreasonable, developers giving up astronomical parts of their investments and things,” McCann said. “But we had to do something. The work will continue on improving our city to face storms in the future like Ian.”