The Roosevelt City Council has given temporary permission to the owner of a feedlot in south Roosevelt to bring in cattle even though the area is zoned residential.

Council members unanimously approved a motion granting Sherm Richens permission to begin operations at the feedlot while he pursues the required zoning change and variance.City officials say Richens must obtain a zone change to A-10 for agricultural use for the 100 acres Richens owns just off State Street.

He was told he must also obtain a variance from the Board of Adjustment for corrals that he has built.

The council told Richens to "spell out" the proposed 300-head cow-calf operation and detail what he wants to be allowed to do.

Residents of a nearby subdivision reportedly have shown no opposition to the feedlot.

Richens initially threatened to de-annex from the city rather than seek a zoning change.

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De-annexation, however would mean lengthy legal battles and delays.

City leaders told Richens they realize they need to protect agricultural interests but also need to regulate such growth so such operations don't "pop up just anywhere in the city."

Richens was told two years ago, before he started building, to obtain the zoning change and variance.

He said he didn't seek the proper approval because he "doesn't like restrictions." He did pledge to work with the city to solve the problem now.

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