City Council being asked to exempt 9 properties from the IDCO. We say NO!
We need your voice at tomorrow's City Council meeting to oppose handing out 9 exemptions to the IDCO for properties that did not pay plan review fees or have finalized plans prior to the March 10th deadline. City Council had promised to hear "hardship cases" for homeowners who had already made plan applications and paid plan fees prior to the March 10th deadline. All of these projects were submitted after the deadline and had not paid their fees.
If you can make it to the meeting on Tuesday night at 6:00 and would like to speak, here are some things to mention. If you cannot make the meeting, please send an email to the council (email addresses below to copy and paste) and let them know your opinion.
1. A deadline is a deadline. Extending a deadline and even the offer of the "hope" of extending a deadline creates a mad rush at the permit desk to usher in even more projects. The March 10th deadline was proposed by the council members themselves and was voted on unanimously on that date. Please don't backslide.
2. The only reason these applicants are asking for exemption from the IDCO is because they want to build very large homes that are inconsistent with the neighborhood, and this is the sole purpose of the IDCO.
3. Each one of these non-conforming homes affects the views, sunlight, privacy and enjoyment of at least a dozen homes around it. Exempting these homes isn't just allowing 9 more large homes to be built, but instead infringing on the rights of over one HUNDRED existing homeowners who are counting on YOU to protect their rights.
4. The IDCO does not prevent a homeowner who wants to build a home to accommodate their growing family. There is no limit on the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, balconies or garage spaces. The IDCO simply means you must prioritize your square footage for your needs which means you may have to compromise on the size of your garage or back off on the number of covered porches or vaulted space that you may desire.
5. City Council directed staff to draft the IDCO to allow the architectural firm recently hired (to the tune of $120,000) the time to draft, educate and present new Design Guidelines to City Council. These new Design Guidelines won't be ready for implementation until the end of the year. Many of the provisions in the IDCO will likely be implemented in the finalized Design Guidelines. Allowing exemptions after the fact only puts more stress on the Planning Department which is already unable to keep up with the volume of applicants.
6. The only valid reason for anyone to oppose the IDCO was the concern that tightened guidelines would drive new home buyers away from Burbank. This MAD RUSH for exemptions only proves that people want to buy and build in Burbank and the IDCO has only increased that desire. Let's stop listening to the fatalists and start representing the current residents of Burbank NEIGHBORHOODS, not just the builders, speculators and new purchasers who are only interested in maximizing their own property at the expense of many life-long Burbank home owners and residents.
The IDCO was implemented to stop the ramping up of tear-downs and the building of huge new homes that seem to be flooding into our city...