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Washington County v. Presley

Court of Appeals of Arkansas, Division IV

March 6, 2019

WASHINGTON COUNTY, ARKANSAS; QUORUM COURT OF WASHINGTON COUNTY, ARKANSAS; AND HONORABLE JOSEPH K. WOOD, IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS COUNTY JUDGE APPELLANTS
v.
TERRY PRESLEY APPELLEE

          Appeal From The Washington County Circuit Court [No. 72CV-17-426] Honorable Mackie M. Pierce, Judge

          Davis, Clark, Butt, Carithers & Taylor, PLC, by: Constance G. Clark, for appellant.

          Taylor Law Partners, LLP, by: Nick Mote and W.H. Taylor, for appellee.

          N. MARK KLAPPENBACH, Judge.

         Terry Presley applied for a conditional-use permit to operate a wedding and event center on property he owns in Washington County. The permit was denied by the Washington County Quorum Court. Presley appealed to the Washington County Circuit Court, which granted summary judgment to Presley. Washington County, its quorum court, and its county judge now appeal. We affirm.

         Presley filed his application for a conditional-use permit in August 2016 and thereafter worked with the Washington County Planning Office to meet the requirements for such a permit as outlined in the Washington County Code. Although the property was zoned for residential and agricultural uses, the Washington County Planning Board and Zoning Board of Adjustments (the board) may authorize other uses upon a finding of the following:

(1) That a written application has been filed with the Planning Office and the appropriate fee has been paid.
(2) That the applicant has provided proof that each property owner as set out in section 11-204 has been notified by return receipt mail.
(3) That adequate utilities, roads, drainage and other public services are available and adequate or will be made available and adequate if the use is granted.
(4) That the proposed use is compatible with the surrounding area.
(5) That the establishment, maintenance, or operation of the conditional use will not be detrimental to or endanger the public health, safety, morals, comfort or general welfare.
(6) That the conditional use will not be injurious to the use and enjoyment of other property in the surrounding area for the purposes already permitted, nor substantially diminish and impair property values within the surrounding area.
(7) That the establishment of the conditional use will not impede the normal and orderly development and improvement of the surrounding area for uses permitted in the zone.

         Washington County, Ark., Code § 11-200(a) (2017). Although some neighbors opposed the permit, the board eventually approved it with conditions in November ...


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