A group of citizens lost its fight to impose a six-month moratorium on the approval of new subdivisions when the City Council rejected an ordinance drafted by the group.
The residents have been working on the ordinance that outlined the problems associated with growth in the suburban city. Resident Neil Spencer, who helped draft the ordinance, said the vote disappointed him because the city isn't able to keep up with growth."We're already having problems with traffic and schools," Spencer said. He says the city has problems keeping up with new construction, including inspecting new subdivisions. But city officials say they're not only dealing with growth, they're staying a step ahead.
Councilman Thaddeus Speed said he voted against the moratorium because it wouldn't solve the problems outlined by the group.
Spencer and others in favor of the moratorium said in six months the council could finish the city's master plan, deal with mounting traffic problems and lobby for more schools to be built in the city limits.
Council members told the citizens that they were continuously working on the master plan and that the other problems couldn't be solved by the city alone.
"I was afraid all it would do is hinder the citizens' ability to take advantage of the low interest rates," Speed said. He added that the city has made a concerted effort to plan ahead for things like water and sewer needs.
"We have made sure that infrastructure was there before the need," Speed said. Ed Cassidy, owner of Mountain View Realty, said he believes the city is dealing well with growth and that a moratorium wouldn't have benefited anyone.
Councilman Keith Coleman was the only one who voted in favor of the moratorium, but he says it wasn't because he thought it would help the city deal with the growth.
"I got into goverment because I didn't think most elected officials listened to the people they represent," Coleman said. "I felt strongly that I should represent."
While he concedes the city is growing at an incredible rate, it's not too much for the city to deal with.
"We'd like to see (growth) at a slower pace, but it's not out of control," Coleman said. Spencer said his group doesn't plan to lobby for any other growth-inhibiting ordinances.
"We're just going to suffer for about 20 years, until the growth is over," Spencer said.