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A. Standards For Granting Variances: The city council may authorize, upon request in specific cases, such variances from the terms of this chapter that will not be contrary to the public interest where, owing to special conditions, a literal enforcement of the provisions of this chapter will result in unnecessary hardship. Variances granted must meet the following applicable standards:
1. Variances shall only be granted upon: a) a showing of good and sufficient cause, b) a determination that failure to grant the variance would result in exceptional hardship to the applicant, and c) a determination that the granting of the variance will not result in increased flood heights, additional threats to public safety, extraordinary public expense, create nuisances, cause fraud on or victimization of the public or conflict with existing local codes or ordinances.
2. Variances shall not be issued within any designated floodway if any increase in flood levels during the 100-year flood would result. Consideration of the effects of any development on flood levels shall be based upon the assumption that an equal degree of development would be allowed for similarly situated lands.
3. Variances shall only be granted upon a determination that the variance is the minimum necessary, considering the flood hazard, to afford relief.
4. In cases where the variance involves a lower level of flood protection for buildings than what is ordinarily required by this chapter, the applicant shall be notified in writing over the signature of the administrator that: a) the issuance of a variance will result in increased premium rates for flood insurance up to amounts as high as twenty five dollars ($25.00) for one hundred dollars ($100.00) of insurance coverage, and b) such construction increases risks to life and property.
5. All variances granted shall have the concurrence or approval of the department of natural resources.
B. Factors Upon Which Council Decision Based: In passing upon applications for variances, the council shall consider all relevant factors specified in other sections of this chapter, and:
1. The danger to life and property due to increased flood heights or velocities caused by encroachments.
2. The danger that materials may be swept onto other land or downstream to the injury of others.
3. The proposed water supply and sanitation systems and the ability of these systems to prevent disease, contamination and unsanitary conditions.
4. The susceptibility of the proposed facility and its contents to flood damage and the effect of such damage on the individual owner.
5. The importance of the services provided by the proposed facility to the city.
6. The requirements of the facility for a floodplain location.
7. The availability of alternative locations not subject to flooding for the proposed use.
8. The compatibility of the proposed use with existing development and development anticipated in the foreseeable future.
9. The relationship of the proposed use to the comprehensive plan and floodplain management program for the area.
10. The safety of access to the property in times of flood for ordinary and emergency vehicles.
11. The expected heights, velocity, duration, rate of rise and sediment transport of the floodwater expected at the site.
12. The cost of providing governmental services during and after flood conditions, including maintenance and repair of public utilities (sewer, gas, electrical and water systems), facilities, streets and bridges.
13. Such other factors which are relevant to the purpose of this chapter.
C. Conditions Attached To Variances: Upon consideration of the factors listed above, the council may attach such conditions to the granting of variances as it deems necessary to further the purpose of this chapter. Such conditions may include, but not necessarily be limited to:
1. Modification of waste disposal and water supply facilities.
2. Limitation of periods of use and operation.
3. Imposition of operational controls, sureties, and deed restrictions.
4. Requirements for construction of channel modifications, dikes, levees, and other protective measures, provided such are approved by the department of natural resources and are deemed the only practical alternative to achieving the purpose of this chapter.
5. Floodproofing measures. (Ord. 2002-104, 8-27-2002)