Cheney Free Press -



Planning Commission meeting rescheduled for March 17


Cheney residents hoping to provide public comment on a pair of zoning issues will have to wait one more week to do so.

Monday’s Planning Commission meeting, which contained two public hearings dealing with a high-density residential rezone and another on commercial marijuana production, has been rescheduled to next Monday, March 17, at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall. Planning Department administrative secretary Sue Beeman said the postponement is due to illnesses. The commission also has two vacancies, making a quorum difficult for the seven-member body.

The first hearing was a continuation of one started at the commission’s February meeting regarding a rezone of a one-third acre parcel of land at 625 Clay St. near Centennial Park. The parcel, owned by Randall Gillingham, is currently zoned R-3 (multi-family residential) and is being considered for a change to R-3H (high density multi-family residential).

The change would allow Gillingham to build a potential 14-unit, 4,550-square-foot multi-family structure on the property. While the parcel is already zoned for multi-family use, properties across Clay Street are zoned R-1 (single-family residential), and several homeowners have opposed the change.

The other public hearing would be the first on a zoning ordinance “Concerning Commercial Activities Related to Marijuana Production, Processing and Sale” in Cheney. The ordinance, W-18, was put in place as an interim measure by the City Council in response to the passage of statewide Initiative 502 in November 2012 legalizing marijuana for recreational use.

The ordinance is “not site specific,” according to the Cheney planning staff report. It incorporates language in I-502 that require a 1,000-foot buffer between such facilities and sensitive uses such as schools, parks, daycares and public transportation, effectively limiting their location in Cheney to business park (BP), light industrial (I-L) and general commercial (C-2) zones.

The ordinance has already been the subject of a special City Council meeting as well as a regular council public hearing conducted over two meetings. At the second meeting Feb. 11, the council voted to move the ordinance along the normal process toward becoming permanent zoning regulations under Chapter 21. The rescheduled March 17 Planning Commission meeting is the next step in that process.

John McCallum can be reached at


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