Family rallies for change in ordinance

By Emily Bialkowski

Caledonia Argus


In an effort to bring their family recreation destination into compliance with Houston County zoning regulations, the Frydenlund family, of Black Hammer Township, has requested an amendment to the Houston County Zoning Ordinance to allow interim uses. More specifically, the family needs an interim use permit for their cabins or some other action that will bring the situation into conformity.

The request was brought to the Houston County Board Sept. 10 by Zoning Administrator Bob Scanlan, who said the matter is several years old.

“They have been working to figure out different avenues to come into compliance,” Scanlan said.

The family trust has a couple hundred acres and several cabins, none of which are used year round, according to Scanlan.

“There’s nothing in the ordinance that’s specific to what they use their property for,” he said.

The family has now submitted a “good sized” application to amend the ordinance to allow interim uses. They used a template from Sherburne County that allows for non-commercial family cabins.

An interim use would differ greatly from Houston County’s typical “conditional use” in that the permit would expire at some point, usually with the sale of the property. Conditional uses stay with the land.

An amendment like this requires a 4-5 or unanimous vote and a public hearing. Because two of five commissioners were absent from the meeting, no action could be taken on the item.

Scanlan said he will use the time to research what criteria could be applied to such an ordinance.


Variances, preliminary plats

In other business, two variances were approved.

The first came from Peter and Jeanne Johnson, of Houston Township, to build a shed. The second came from Dean Miller, of Wilmington Township, for a shed, as well.

A preliminary plat for a single lot subdivision for Nick Thesing, of Money Creek Township, got the okay, but a similar request from Larry Hanson, of Yucatan Township, was tabled after a discrepancy in the land description was found. The matter will be reviewed and likely returned for approval.

August’s zoning permits were also presented. (See chart.)


August Zoning Permits


Charles and Kevin Kruse, Winnebago Township, build grain bin

Sheldon Neeley, Spring Grove Township, build house

Ron and Kim Holty, Wilmington Township, build two additions to house, no new bedrooms

Scott Feine, Money Creek Township, build pole barn

Tom Welscher, Caledonia Township, build utility building, corn dryer and two bulk bins

Lowell Kinstler, Money Creek Township, build a hay shed

Matt Kubly, Houston Township, build deck on house

Hetland Family Limited Partnership, Money Creek Township, build multi-purpose garage with bathroom

Randy Krueger, Brownsville Township, build pole shed

Gary and Dawn Huebner, Mound Prairie Township, install house, three-car garage and deck

Mike Banse, Winnebago Township, build addition to free-stall barn

Joshua Dahl, Yucatan Township, build mono slope building

Mark Schulte, Mayville Township, build livestock building

Tim Orr, Yucatan Township, build shop with porch

John Koch, Caledonia Township, build dog house

Franklin Hahn, Yucatan Township, replace hay shed due to fire loss

Dan Gade, Jefferson Township, build grain bin

Karl Sylling, Wilmington Township, build shop