After a lengthy public debate Tuesday night, Town Council members said "nay" to a request to rezone 12 acres of Chaparral Pines Drive property to accommodate about 18 $500,000 homes.
They voted 7-0 to deny a request by developer Jeffrey Edens to rezone what was described as "horse country." Current R1-90 zoning on the property allows Edens to place only half a dozen homes there.
Residents of the area opposed to the rezoning described their lifestyle as a dying breed. They said they purchased their 2-acre lots because they believed the zoning would remain in place.
Town Council member Hoby Herron said the council had a contract with the people to keep the east Payson neighborhood intact.
Edens argued that the smaller lots would bring down the cost of housing, but the council didn't buy Edens' idea of the $400,000 to $500,000 homes as "affordable housing."
One of those opposing the rezoning request, Gary Sceli, a homeowner on Chaparral Pines Drive, said he was not against Sheehan dividing his property into 2-acre parcels.
Another resident, Don Harmon, said that Edens purchased 12 acres of Sheehan's 14-acre property on Chaparral Pines Drive knowing the zoning that was in place.
Council member Jack Monschein, who said he has been a horse owner for 60 years, told the group that he will do all he can during his term of office to protect the horse owner.
"I fear what I see in the future," Monschein said.
Airport fees increased
In other business, the council voted 4-3 in favor of raising airport tie down, through-the-fence and campground fees, as recommended by Town Manager Rich Underkofler.
The increase in fees at the airport will become effective July 1 and will be $30 a month for tie downs (up from $22.50 a month), $15 for through-the- fence (up from $11.25 a month) and $12 a night for campground fees (up from $10 a night).
Council members Ken Murphy, Barbara Brewer and Monschein cast the dissenting votes.
The Town Council's public hearing on its proposed ordinance to control loud car and home stereos generated no public comment. It will be brought before council for another public hearing and final council action.