ORDINANCE NO. 20-17
An Ordinance of the City Council of the City of Whitefish, Montana, amending Title 11 -Zoning Regulations, Chapter 2-Zoning Districts.
 
WHEREAS, the City's Legacy Homes Program went into effect in July of 2019 with the goal of achieving a stock of affordable housing within the City; and
 
WHEREAS. the Legacy Homes Program requires that with certain exceptions, new residential developments which are subject to a discretionary permit must build affordable units; and
 
WHEREAS, prior to the adoption of the Legacy Homes Program, multi-family developments on properties zoned WR-4 (High Density Residential) could build an unlimited number of units without having to obtain a discretionary permit, provided all development standards could be met; and
 
WHEREAS, § 11-2l-3 of the Whitefish City Code, adopted as part of the Legacy Homes zoning regulations, requires multi-family developments on properties zoned WR-4 to obtain an administrative conditional use permit to build between eight and eighteen units; and
 
WHEREAS, at a joint meeting held with the Whitefish City Council on October 19, 2020, the Strategic Housing Plan Steering Committee recommended that the Council reduce the threshold triggering the requirement of administrative conditional use permit on property zoned WR-4 from eight units to four units; and
 
WHEREAS, the Strategic Housing Plan Steering Committee expressed concern that developers are building projects with seven units to avoid triggering the administrative conditional use permit requirement, and therefore the Legacy Homes requirements; and
 
WHEREAS, at the meeting, City Council directed Planning staff to initiate a proposed text amendment to the WR-4 zoning district in order to discuss it further and obtain more public input; and
 
WHEREAS, pursuant to § 76-2-303, MCA, notice was published in the Whitefish Pilot on November 4, 2020; and
 
WHEREAS, Planning staff drafted Staff Report WZTA 20-05 dated November 12, 2020, which evaluated a proposed text amendment pursuant to § 11-7-12E of the Whitefish City Code and recommended the Whitefish Planning Board deny the proposed text amendment; and
 
WHEREAS, at a lawfully noticed public hearing on November 19, 2020, the Whitefish Planning Board received an oral report from Planning staff, reviewed Staff Report WZTA 20-05, invited public comment, and thereafter voted to amend the proposed text amendment to require an administrative use permit at five (5) units instead of four (4) units; and
 
WHEREAS, at a lawfully noticed public hearing on December 7, 2020, the City Council received an oral report and a written report from Planning staff, reviewed Staff Report WZTA 20-05 and letter of transmittal, invited public input, and thereafter voted to approve the text amendment as amended, attached as Exhibit A; and
 
WHEREAS, it will be in the best interests of the City of Whitefish and its inhabitants to adopt the proposed text amendment.
 
NOW, THEREFORE, be it ordained by the City Council of the City of Whitefish, Montana, as follows:
 
Section 1:   All of the recitals set forth above are hereby adopted as Findings of Fact.
 
Section 2:   The Whitefish Planning Board Recommended Findings of Fact, attached as Exhibit B and incorporated herein, are adopted as additional Findings of Fact.
 
Section 3:   Title 11 - Zoning Regulations, Chapter 2 – Zoning Districts, of the Whitefish City Code is hereby amended as set forth in Exhibit A attached hereto.
 
Section 4:   In the event any word, phrase, clause, sentence, paragraph, section or other part of the Ordinance set forth herein is held invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction, such judgment shall affect only that part held invalid, and the remaining provisions thereof shall continue in full force and effect.
 
Section 5:   This Ordinance shall take effect thirty (30) days after its adoption by the City Council of the City of Whitefish, Montana, and signing by the Mayor thereof.
 
PASSED AND ADOPTED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF WHITEFISH, MONTANA, THIS 4TH DAY OF JANUARY 2021.
 
      
   John M. Muhlfeld, Mayor
ATTEST:
 
   
Michelle Howke, City Clerk
 
EXHIBIT A
 
Whitefish City Code Title 11 – Zoning Regulations
Chapter 2 – Zoning Districts
 
11-2I-3:   CONDITIONAL USES:
 
Bed and breakfast establishments (see special provisions in section 11-3-4 of this title).
Boarding houses.
Catering services.
Churches or similar places of worship, including parish houses and parsonages.
Daycare centers (more than 12 individuals).
Hostels.
Mixed use professional office/residential with professional office only permitted on the street level between Railway Street and Second Street.
Music and dance schools and studios.  (Limited to Spokane Avenue, Central Avenue south of Fourth Street, Baker Avenue between Fourth Street and Fifth Street, Wisconsin Avenue south of Glenwood, and East Seventh Street east of Park Avenue. See special provisions in section 11-3-31 of this title.)
Nursing or retirement homes.
Personal services.  (Limited to Spokane Avenue, Central Avenue south of Fourth Street, Baker Avenue between Fourth Street and Fifth Street, and Wisconsin Avenue south of Glenwood. See special provisions in section 11-3-30 of this title.)
Private recreational facilities.
Professional artist studio/gallery.  (Limited to Spokane Avenue, Central Avenue south of Fourth Street, Second Street West, Baker Avenue between Fourth Street and Fifth Street, and Wisconsin Avenue south of Glenwood.  See special provisions in section 11-3-15 of this title.)
Professional offices. (Limited to Spokane Avenue, Central Avenue south of Fourth Street, Baker Avenue between Fourth Street and Fifth Street, and Wisconsin Avenue south of Glenwood. See special provisions in section 11-3-16 of this title.)
Residential:
Accessory apartments.
Dwelling groups or clusters.
Guesthouses, only on lots over ten thousand (10,000) square feet.
Multi-family dwellings, five (5) to eighteen (18) dwelling units - administrative conditional use permit (subsection 11-7-8 M of this title) (see special provisions in section 11-3-42 or 11-3-43 of this title).
Multi-family dwellings, nineteen (19) or more dwelling units (see special provisions in section 11-3-42 or 11-3-43 of this title).
Schools (K - 12).
Type I and type II community residential facilities.