The Spokane County Planning Commission on Thursday shot down a proposed ban on lots smaller than 40 acres in traditional farming areas in the shadow of Mount Spokane.
The plan had sparked strong opposition from the few people who still make a living working the fertile soil in the Foothills area, and Peone and Pleasant prairies.
Those farmers were joined by developers and other angry landowners to pack a Nov. 14 hearing on the matter.
Zoned for general agriculture, the area can be subdivided into 10-acre lots. The planning commission had considered changing the zoning to “exclusive agriculture,” which is used in far-flung areas of the county to preserve farmland from urban sprawl.
The planning commission also considered - and rejected - plans to spread the exclusive agriculture zone to an area straddling state Highway 27, near the towns of Mica and Valleyford, and to the Four Mounds area in northwest Spokane County.
In a related matter, the planning commission adopted a new “forest zone” to protect timber-producing areas. But commissioners reduced the minimum lot size from 40 acres to 20, and deleted land near Newman Lake and other semi-rural areas from the protective zoning.
The commission’s decisions are advisory only. The final decision on each of the zones must be made by county commissioners. , DataTimes
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