Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Photos and questions and answers on facts of Riparian-zone ordinance of Fayetteville, Arkansas

Streamside Protection Ordinance

Streamside Protection Ordinance FAQs

1)    Why is the streamside protection ordinance necessary? 

2)    I have property on a stream in the City limits.  Am I affected by this ordinance?

3)    Why is the buffer 50 feet?

4)    How do I measure the 50-foot buffer?

5)    What is the Top of Bank?  Who can help me determine where the top of bank is?

6)    Is the buffer an easement?

 7)   What provisions are in place for existing property owners who are affected?

8)    So I can continue to use my property just as I am now?

9)    If I sell my property, are the uses still grandfathered in?

10)   How does someone get a variance?

11)   Is the City exempt from any part of the ordinance?

12)   How will the City trails program be affected by the ordinance?

13)   Why does the City Engineer have the power to administratively change the Best                                   Management Practices Manual? What checks does the Council have in place?

14)   Why is the ordinance not a “taking?”

15)   How does this ordinance affect property values?


Streamside Protection Background

The Nutrient Reduction Plan, completed in April 2009 by Geosyntec Consultants as part of an Agreement with the Beaver Water District and the City of Fayetteville, recommends the development and implementation of a riparian buffer ordinance. This ordinance is part of a series of recommendations designed to reduce non-point source loadings of total phosphorus in the Beaver Lake Watershed and would ultimately reduce the non-point source loadings of total phosphorus in all the City’s waterways.

The City of Fayetteville hosted two public education and input sessions on streamside protection in early March, as well as an online survey during March and April, in order to get citizen input in the development of the ordinance.  Questions asked of participants included input into which streams should have buffer protection and what activities should be allowed or prohibited in the protected areas.   

A question and answer session for property owners who might be affected was held on October 12 at the City Administration building.  The question and answer slide show from this meeting can be found HERE.

The Planning Commission forwarded the Streamside Protection Ordinance to the City Council with a recommendation for approval on November 8, 2010 with a vote of 7-2-0. The ordinance was tabled at City Council on February 3 and February 15, 2011.  The ordinance was adopted with a vote of 7-1-0 at the March 1 City Council meeting.  Please contact the City Clerk's office to view a copy of the adopted ordinance.

View a letter containing City Attorney's legal opinion on the Streamside Protection Ordinance.
View the City Council Staff Report for the Streamside Protection Ordinance.
View a draft of the City's Streamside Protection Zone Map.
The Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service published a Streamside Protection Ordinance Fact Sheet which also offers information on protecting riparian zones.

Images from March 6 Input Session and field trip to College Branch at Martin Luther King Boulevard
(March 6 Images courtesy of Aubrey Shepherd)


Images from March 10 Input Session and field trip to College Branch