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Rezoning request denied by council

The Farmington City Council voted to deny a boundary adjustment and rezoning request by a local businessman during the meeting on Monday night.

The request for rezoning by local businessman, Rafi Kthiri, the owner of Rafi’s Lawn Service in Farmington, was unanimously denied by the city council. In addition, the council also denied his request for a boundary adjustment to merge the two adjacent properties Kthiri owns at 713 and 709 Janey Dr.

“Mr. Kthiri wanted to locate his lawn service business in a residential neighborhood,” said Mayor Mit Landrum. “He bought some property, graveled the back area and added a fence. To many of his neighbors, they viewed this as damaging to the neighborhood.”

Landrum added that the city did make a mistake on the interpretation of the ordinance that would allow for the rezoning and the city would help Kthiri find a suitable location for his business.

“The city was initially responsible because Kthiri was led to believe he was able to rezone his property,” Landrum said. “There was a misinterpretation of the ordinance where he would be able to operate in a residential area because he was a home-based business, which he clearly isn’t. As a result, the city is going to try and find him a home in our industrial park where he really belongs.”

In other business, the board unanimously approved a request from Jones Farmington Properties, LLC, for an alteration to their planned unit development to allow a pick-up window to be installed for the new location of Imo’s Pizza at the Mineral Area Shopping Center.

Before the meeting ended, the council listen to both Farmington Fire Chief Todd Mecey and Police Chief Rick Baker give their annual reports.

Chief Baker’s report can be found in this week’s edition of the Farmington Press.

During his report, Mecey reported his department responded to 2,380 total incidents, an increase of 164 over the prior year. In 2015, the department responded to 2,216 total incidents, and according to Mecey, the department’s five year average is 2,160 total incidents.

Mecey further added that 52 percent of the incidents the department responded to were EMS calls, followed by 12 percent false alarms, 11 percent good intent service, 8 percent mutual aid, 5 percent structure fires, 5 percent vehicle accidents, 4 percent other hazards and 3 percent other fires.

Additionally, the chief reported the response time for his department is 4 minutes, 23 seconds – an increase over last year’s response time by 15 seconds. According to Mecey, the longer response time is due to the fact that Farmington is still expanding.

After Mecey’s presentation, Landrum stated the service provided by both the fire department and the police department was exemplary.

“Year after year, both departments perform better than their peers across the United States,” Landrum said. “Farmington is a very safe place to live. That is why people come back here to retire. For a long time we have said, ‘Farmington is an hour away from everything you love about St. Louis, but 100 miles away from everything you hate’ and they are just one of the (good) things about Farmington.”

Before the evening ended, Councilman Larry Forsythe publicly thanked Landrum for his service to the community. Landrum’s term as mayor will be ending after the April 4 election.

During the March 27 meeting of the Farmington City Council, Chief Todd eacey with the Farmington Fire Department gives his yearly report. During the previous year, the department responded to 2,380 calls, an increase of 164 from the previous year. 

During the March 27 meeting of the Farmington City Council, Chief Todd eacey with the Farmington Fire Department gives his yearly report. During the previous year, the department responded to 2,380 calls, an increase of 164 from the previous year. 

Craig Vaughn is a reporter for the Farmington Press and can be reached at 573-518-3629 or at cvaughn@farmingtonpressonline.com.

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