Landwatch Lane County v. Lane County

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Municipal Law
  • Date Filed: 06-13-2016
  • Case #: 2016-019
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Opinion by Bassham
  • Full Text Opinion

Pursuant to Lane County Rural Comprehensive Plan (RCP) Goal 5 and Flora and Fauna Policy 11, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife recommendations must be considered with regard to proposed increases in overall residential density for properties inventoried in the RCP as Big Game Habitat.

The petitioner appealed a county decision approving a comprehensive plan map amendment to redesignate land from Agricultural to Marginal Land, and rezone land from Exclusive Farm Use (E-40) to Marginal Land with Site Review (ML/SR).

The property on which development was proposed is an 85-acre parcel zoned for agricultural use and developed with a single family dwelling. The property is inventoried as a Big Game Habitat in Lane County’s Rural Comprehensive Plan (RCP), and sub-classified as Peripheral Big Game Range and Impacted Big Game Range. Intervenors (Iversons) applied to the County to redesignate and rezone the property from agricultural use to marginal lands, which would allow the property to develop with a density of one dwelling per 20 acres. To comply with RCP Goal 5, the Iversons submitted an Economic, Social, Environmental and Energy (ESEE) analysis regarding the impacts of the proposed development. ESEE claimed that the development at a density of 20 acres per dwelling would not interfere with the inventoried Big Game Habitat resources.

The county approved the application. In this appeal, petitioner, Landwatch Lane County asserted that RCP Goal 5 and Flora and Fauna Policy 11 require that the county use Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) recommendations for overall residential density in order to protect big game. ODFW recommended one dwelling per 40 acres on this type of land. Both parties agree that remand is necessary to address the issues raised. REMANDED.